Architecting a Microsoft Private Cloud

The first part of a four-part article series titled Architecting a Microsoft Private Cloud, by myself and my colleague Adam Fazio (@adamfazio) has been published in TechNet Magazine here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/hh127072.aspx Microsoft Services has designed, built and implemented a Private Cloud/IaaS reference implementation using Windows Server, Hyper-V and System Center. Our goal throughout this four-part series will be…

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From Virtualization to Dynamic IT

Issue 24 of the Microsoft Architecture Journal focuses on virtualization. My paper, From Virtualization to Dynamic IT, has been published in this issue. My thesis: Virtualization is a critical infrastructure-architecture layer that is required for achieving higher IT-maturity levels, but several others layers—such as automation, management, and orchestration—are equally important. For the last several months…

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The Year Ahead

What is a dynamic datacenter? How does a dynamic datacenter enable private cloud computing and fit within a long term, enterprise cloud strategy? What can be achieved now with Microsoft and partner solutions while laying the ground work for future product and service waves? These questions and many more like them will be my focus…

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Private Clouds: Believe it or not?

Recently there has been some healthy debate around the validity of “private clouds” and whether such a construct is new or just a different name for virtualization and automated provisioning, i.e. a marketecture. In this corner for the anti-Private Cloud sentiment, we have the 2009 Prediction – Rise and Fall of the Private Cloud which…

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Cloud Computing: Taxes Analogous to Atmospheric Pressure

In a blog posting earlier this week, the Azure team announced that they would be moving all Azure applications out of our “USA – Northwest” datacenter. I was fascinated by this given that the stated reason for this move is a change in local tax law which presumably make it less financially attractive to offer…

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Head-to-Head: Workflow Studio vs PowerShell for Automation

Here’s an interesting and slightly amusing mock debate between Brandon Shell and Jason Conger on Citrix’s Workflow Studio vs PowerShell for automation. If you aren’t familiar with it, here is the description of what Workflow Studio is: “Citrix Workflow Studio™ is an infrastructure process automation platform that enables you to transform your datacenter into a…

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Threat Modeling Guide for IT Infrastructure

Over on the Solution Accelerators Security Blog is a post and link to the IT Infrastructure Threat Modeling Guide. From the guide: The IT Infrastructure Threat Modeling Guide provides an easy-to-understand method for developing threat models that can help prioritize investments in IT infrastructure security. This guide describes and considers the extensive methodology that exists…

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Excellent Data Center Article in the NY Times Magazine

The New York Times magazine has a very interesting article by Tom Vanderbilt on datacenters and the infrastructures that power today’s online services. Several Microsoft (and former Microsoft) execs were interviewed including Mike Manos, Debra Chrapaty, Daniel Costello, etc. The article ends with a very insightful comment by Mike Manos: “We’re at the beginning of…

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White Paper: Comparing the Power Utilization of Native and Virtual Exchange Environments

The Exchange team has published a whitepaper on TechNet comparing the power utilization of a typical 8 server physical Exchange environment compared to a a virtualized environment using the same number of logical processors but on only two Hyper-V host servers. The result: a 50% reduction in power usage (excluding storage). If storage is included…

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Hyper-V and VMM: Scale Up, Out, and to the Cloud

Between MMS and TechEd there have been a lot of announcements on the virtualization and cloud computing front. First, over on the Virtualization Team Blog, Jeff provided the announcement and details around some new capabilities coming in Hyper-V with Windows Server 2008 R2: 64 logical processor support. A 4x improvement over Hyper-V R1 and means…

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