Technology standards organization aims to be a comprehensive resource to help agencies comply with government's "cloud-first" mandate.
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: Top 20 Government Cloud Service Providers
The federal technology standards organization has released its most comprehensive guide to date for how agencies should implement cloud computing, a move that should clear up myths about the technology and pave the way for more standard cloud implementations among agencies.
The National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) has published an 84-page draft of its cloud computing guidelines, NIST Cloud Computing Synopsis and Recommendations, or SP 800-146, and is seeking comment from federal agencies and the public on its recommendations.
There are still many myths about cloud computing, even from technologists who are charged with implementing it. Since government agencies look to NIST for guidance in deploying technologies, the document tackles the cloud from various angles and tries to cover as much ground as possible.
Because cloud computing is not merely one technology but a collection of many in a particular systems environment, NIST provides an overview of different cloud environments--software as a service, platform as a service, and infrastructure as a service--and discusses each in detail.
The document also provides information on how organizations should balance the opportunities and efficiencies that cloud computing presents with its security risks. Other topics include computing performance, reliability, economics, compliance, and data and applications security, as well as the typical costs of cloud computing.
Last December U.S. CIO Vivek Kundra issued a "cloud-first" mandate to agencies requiring they consider the cloud as an option before deciding on new technology deployment.
He also demanded that agencies identify three existing systems that could move to the cloud, which he said recently has been done. Cloud computing is an integral part of the feds' 25-point IT reform plan.
Earlier this year NIST also published a draft for managing security and privacy in the cloud, hastening the document's release at Kundra's request to support the cloud-first policy. The standards body sets security requirements for technology the government uses under the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA).
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.
Top IT Trends to Watch in Financial ServicesIT pros at banks, investment houses, insurance companies, and other financial services organizations are focused on a range of issues, from peer-to-peer lending to cybersecurity to performance, agility, and compliance. It all matters.
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of September 18, 2016. We'll be talking with the InformationWeek.com editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."