Survey shows cloud computing gaining steam in the enterprise, though concerns remain.
A survey of network managers and other IT pros attending this week's Interop Las Vegas business technology conference found that more than 40% have some form of public cloud resources available on their corporate systems.
Of the 104 respondents, 41% said their companies tapped the cloud for apps and services such as Google's Google Apps productivity software and Salesforce.com's online CRM tools.
29% of respondents to the survey, which was conducted Network Instruments, said their organizations have adopted private clouds, while 19% reported using some form of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), like Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2).
33% indentified lower infrastructure costs as the primary reason their organization is adopting cloud computing services. Another 30% moved to cloud services to leverage the added flexibility it gave their IT departments to answer business changes. Just 3% said they didn't see any benefits to cloud computing.
"Many Interop attendees we are speaking with embrace cloud computing, but are migrating without fully realizing the visibility and management challenges this shift presents," said Stephen Brown, product manager for Network Instruments, in a statement Wednesday.
Indeed, 22% percent said they lacked the tools necessary to monitor and manage cloud activities. 15% said they lacked sufficient knowledge to manage cloud issues, and 12% reported being unable to resolve delays caused by cloud service providers.
"It was significant to note the number of organizations without adequate monitoring technologies and network resources in place," said Brown.
The top concern (27%) among potential cloud users was the fear that network bandwidth costs would exceed estimates.
"Cloud implementations can be fraught with challenges that consume troubleshooting time and bandwidth, jeopardizing the organization's ability to realize cost savings promised by these services," said Brown.
Still, cloud computing has many backers. Earlier Wednesday, IBM cloud CTO Kristof Kloeckner, said organizations that embrace cloud computing could cut IT labor costs by up to 50% and improve capital utilization by 75%.
2014 Next-Gen WAN SurveyWhile 68% say demand for WAN bandwidth will increase, just 15% are in the process of bringing new services or more capacity online now. For 26%, cost is the problem. Enter vendors from Aryaka to Cisco to Pertino, all looking to use cloud to transform how IT delivers wide-area connectivity.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.