Feds Use Cloud To Clean Up Nuclear Site - InformationWeek

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Cloud // Software as a Service
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12/20/2013
01:08 PM

Feds Use Cloud To Clean Up Nuclear Site

The Department of Energy's Hanford site conquers a wide area with a flexible cloud environment and thin clients to improve performance and lower costs.

 MSA's Todd Eckman (left) and DOE's Ben Ellison
MSA's Todd Eckman (left) and DOE's Ben Ellison

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smcduffie
50%
50%
smcduffie,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/2/2014 | 2:06:38 PM
The stormy cloud
With no disrespect to Mr. Eckman and Mr. Ellison, the Hanford cloud environment is not as wonderful as this piece suggests. I have been a user of Hanford IT services for 15 years. I appreciate the considerable savings in hardware costs, but the thin clients absolutely do not provide "striking improvements in computer performance." Before the thin clients, I was tied to the Hanford network with a standard laptop and a docking station. With the move to thin clients I found that processing time declined slightly, and it has deteriorated noticably in the two years since. I do not perform complex work: I am talking about the time to open e-mails and MS Word documents and load web pages. Before the cloud we could log in remotely from most locations and access files that we elected to store on the server, so little changed with that capability. The VoIP phone system provides noticably better audio quality for calls within the Hanford network, but I have also had multiple occasions in which my desk phone simply does not provide a dial tone when I try to make a call. The reliability is less than a standard phone line. I have far more IT frustrations with the cloud than I did before.
cbabcock
50%
50%
cbabcock,
User Rank: Strategist
12/23/2013 | 2:52:30 PM
Thin clients save money. What does VMware cost?
It's important that the Hanford site have the best computing resources available. Plutonium polluted ground water has been spreading out for years from beneath the site and headed for the Columbia River, a by-product of producing 60,000 nuclear weapons there. Monitoring and managing the clean-up is a top priority. One question: the savings of moving to thin clients is well established and a real one. How does the cost of VMware end user virtualization figure into that as an offsetting, additional cost? 
Whoopty
50%
50%
Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
12/23/2013 | 7:07:02 AM
Good to see
Good to see Federal agencies starting to take advantage of the cloud - the current administration is certainly something that could do with streamlining. 
Gary_EL
50%
50%
Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
12/22/2013 | 10:21:37 PM
Worth the Effort
With this system they have tighter control, reduced costs, and much greater versitility to respond to future challenges. Great use of a private cloud.

 
Gary_EL
50%
50%
Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
12/22/2013 | 10:21:34 PM
Worth the Effort
With this system they have tighter control, reduced costs, and much greater versitility to respond to future challenges. Great use of a private cloud.

 
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