Optimizing Your Network

By Gary Bolles  |  Posted 2003-09-01 Print this article Print

The Best a Wan Can Get Strategies for Optimizing Your Network

Technologies are now appearing that treat network resources—bandwidth, storage and processors—as pools, allowing IT to allocate them more efficiently than ever before. Its not "grid computing": Rather than running a single application on a single server, the idea is to consolidate resources so theyre used more efficiently.

Peter Christy, a principal analyst at NetsEdge Research Group, says commoditization down in the network means the move to standardization and simplification is going to continue. "I think people are seeing that arbitrary differentiation at the lower levels is irrelevant," he says.Effective network optimization strategies include:

  • Wan Links: Some companies are simply including optimizing technology with each new link they order, according to Aberdeens Michael Hoch. Example: Tacit Networks vice president of sales and marketing, Jeff Helthall, claims customers can get payback in as little as three months by installing his companys products to enable real-time global file-sharing over wide-area networks.

  • Servers: Aggregating processors can provide significant savings, says B.V. Jagadeesh, CEO of infrastructure optimizer Netscaler Inc. The Microsoft Network, which he says had 24 servers, budgeted for growth to 82—and instead trimmed to eight by using server-pooling technology.

  • Storage:"Theres a massive oppor- tunity to reduce data storage costs," says Accentures Tony Roby. Some companies are moving to network-attached storage and storage area networks, which decouple storage from specific servers.

  • IT Governance:Ensuring internal processes are efficient—and followed through—is the goal of software that helps IT departments stay in step with corporate goals while managing their own operations as effectively as possible.
  • Change Management: These applications track hardware and software changes to ensure that no errors are introduced, patches are up to date and corporate standards are followed.

    The results are available in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. To download the free Adobe Acrobat Reader plug-in, click here.
  • IT Optimization
  • Optimization Chart

    Gary Bolles Gary A. Bolles is the Editorial Director for Ziff Davis Media's Custom Conference Group. He is responsible for directing the group's editorial efforts, ensuring the quality of the content it delivers, and moderating and speaking at client events. A frequent lecturer and keynote speaker on a variety of technology topics, he has hosted more than 50 events in the past year alone.

    Bolles was the founding Editor-in-Chief of Interactive Week, developing its unique vision, the founding editorial director of Sm@rt Reseller magazine, creating the publication from initial research, and the founding Editorial Director of Yahoo! Internet Life, managing its successful launch. Bolles was also the Editor-in-Chief of Network Computing Magazine, and for one year was the host of 'Working the Web' for TechTV, covering a wide variety of technology-related topics. Until recently, he was a contributing editor to CIO Insight, writing on a broad range of technology subjects, and assisting in the coordination of the publication's research efforts.

    Bolles is the former Chief Operating Officer of Evolve Software, Inc., and the former VP of Marketing for Network Products Corporation. He has served as a marketing consultant to a variety of organizations, and has advised a number of software startup companies in arenas such as online marketing and data mining.

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