Trend 1:Pre-Configured Software/Hardware

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Trend 1:Pre-Configured Software/Hardware

Enterprises are looking to simplify all their IT as much as possible by buying ready-to-run appliances with pre-configured middleware and applications. This includes servers, storage arrays, and switches.

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Trend 2:</b><br /><b>Smaller, Low-end Servers Using Cell phone-type Chips

Customers are starting to think about how to use these cheaper, less-power-hungry servers with standard processors for low-end workloads. Massive cloud service providers like Google are already all over this one.

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Trend 3:</b><br /><b>More Apps Moving to Virtual Machines

Almost half of all enterprise applications now are living in Virtual Machines and the trend will continue upward for a while to come.

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Trend 4:</b><br /><b>Virtualization Still Gaining Momentum

Globally, virtual machines will surpass physical servers in sheer numbers sometime in 2011. Credit the maturity of x86 machines for this.

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Trend 5:</b><br /><b>More Data Centers Being Built for the 'Consumer Cloud'

Up to now, this is by far the most successful use of cloud computing: data centers that handle high-traffic Web sites such as Google, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Amazon, Yahoo and numerous other social-networking and gaming locations. Ad-based revenue is driving this model quite nicely.

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Trend 6:</b><br /><b>B2B Clouds Disrupting Traditional IT Delivery Models

For example, sells sales automation tools to businesses. Amazon and Rackspace are selling virtual servers to businesses. Server and networking hardware makers can't be too happy about that bigger picture even though they sell plenty of units to Amazon, and Rackspace.

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Trend 7:</b><br /><b>Business Analytics Gaining Traction

New, less-expensive software—both on-premise and in cloud services—that charts, stores and analyzes business data is changing data centers from cost centers into strategic business assets.

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Trend 8:</b><br /><b>Keeping Closer Track of the Holistic Data Center

New software from DCIM (Data Center Infrastructure Managment) companies such as nLyte, Avocent, AccessIT, BMC, Aptare, Modius and Rackwise can monitor activity and enable control of all aspects of a data center—physical and digital, including power usage, storage capacity, and a legion of other metrics. Efficiency has never been so efficient.

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Trend 9:</b><br /><b>Storage Capacities Keep Going Up

Thankfully, storage hardware and software makers are keeping ahead of the curve (just barely, by the way), thanks to continually improving disk capacities and faster, more efficient file system software.

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Trend 10:</b><br /><b>Solid-State Processors Finding More Places to Work

SSDs are in every type of data center hardware, whether it's servers, storage arrays, switches, routers, power supplies, surveillance cameras inside the building—you name it. Nonetheless, hard disk drives and tape storage are years away from obsolescence.

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Trend 11:</b><br /><b>VDI Finally in Legitimate Ascension

CIOs and CTOs are finally starting to look seriously at ditching the Microsoft client-server standard and instead deploy enterprise virtual desktops that are secured in the data center and can be accessed by any device, anywhere.

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Trend 12:</b><br /><b>Monolithic Data Centers Dying Out

If all your servers are dedicated, you're not using some form of virtualization or not using a cloud service somewhere in your IT establishment, then you've officially been passed by. Consider yourself warned.

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