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Hybrid IT: How Internal and External Cloud Services are Transforming IT

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Hybrid IT is the result of combining internal and external services, usually from a combination of internal and public clouds, in support of a business outcome. Adoption risks of public clouds have led to architectures that connect internal core services and critical data to external, commoditized services.

Hybrid IT relies on new technologies to connect clouds, sophisticated approaches to data classification and identity, and service oriented architecture. In addition, the role of IT and its practitioners is undergoing significant change.

Gartner Technical Professional Research Analysts discuss business and technology trends for 2013.

Gartner for Technical Professionals: Hybrid IT Research

  • Architecture & Strategy
  • Infrastructure
  • Applications, Data & Providers
  • Security & Identity

Architecture & Strategy

2014 Planning Guide for Cloud Computing

3 October 2013

Cloud computing is no longer a new concept, and many organizations have been consuming cloud services for the past several years. However, in 2014, many organizations will look to move cloud computing past the early phase and constrained use cases and into more widespread, production adoption.

Solution Path for Public Cloud Adoption Maturity Plan

8 November 2012

IT organizations must commit to a maturity transformation of their organizations, governance, technology, applications and management processes in order to better adopt public cloud services. This Solution Path presents a multiyear maturity plan for public cloud computing adoption.

Defining Cloud Computing

9 January 2012

Cloud computing's on-demand, pay-as-you-go service model is transforming IT from massive, cumbersome, internal cost centers into agile, reactive, external services that are used not merely as business tools, but as the medium by which business is conducted. Unfortunately, marketing hype, unclear return on investment, and difficult risk/benefit analysis continue to hinder cloud adoption. Organizations that best understand cloud computing can take advantage of its strengths and mitigate its risks. In this management initiative, Gartner clarifies the discussion by defining cloud computing and its characteristics, architectural model, benefits, and shortcomings.

Cloud Computing Tiered Architecture

6 January 2012

Clients continue to request help with understanding cloud computing architecture and information. Unfortunately, the volume of hype and conflicting information slows down the adoption of cloud computing, but IT organizations are aware that implementing cloud services is complex. If cloud computing is to mature, IT organizations must develop a cloud adoption strategy -- a strategy that is built on a simple, easy-to-understand architecture. This Gartner cloud computing root template depicts the root diagram for cloud computing by breaking it into three separate tiers. Using this template, IT organizations can level-set cloud comprehension, understand its value, and devise an adoption strategy.

Cloud Characteristics, Principles and Design Patterns

15 July 2012

How do you maximize the cloudiness of an IT solution? IT architects need a framework for evaluating cloud platforms and custom-developed applications intended to run on them. The benefits of cloud computing are realized by implementing an architecture with desirable characteristics, such as elastic scalability, metered consumption and self-service. This template defines the architectural principles and design patterns that maximize cloud characteristics and determines the cloud tier in which each pattern can be implemented (infrastructure, platform or application code). This template also guides architects around the anti-patterns that counteract potential benefits of cloud computing.

Building a Solid Cloud Adoption Strategy: Success by Design

19 May 2010

As cloud computing enters the adoption era, IT organizations are being asked to take a serious look at using cloud computing to lower costs and create a more agile IT environment. But cloud computing still presents many risks regarding data compliance, security, vendor viability, and liability. To date, cloud computing has been adopted in an ad hoc manner, often starting as "pilot projects" projects deep within the IT organization. For cloud computing to be successful, IT organizations need a solid, well thought-out cloud adoption strategy--one that takes into account the risks and rewards.

Hybrid Cloud Network Architecture

13 November 2013

A variety of hybrid cloud network architectures has emerged, and choosing the right one depends on both the use case and the cloud environment. Logically extending the corporate data center perimeter to the cloud should also be addressed and can be facilitated by SDN and network virtualization.

Solution Path for Public Cloud Adoption Maturity Plan

8 November 2012

IT organizations must commit to a maturity transformation of their organizations, governance, technology, applications and management processes in order to better adopt public cloud services. This Solution Path presents a multiyear maturity plan for public cloud computing adoption.

Infrastructure as a Service

9 July 2012

IT organizations are increasingly looking to build cloud-based infrastructures to reduce cost of ownership while improving agility and business continuity. However, designing cloud-based infrastructure as a service (IaaS) architecture brings numerous challenges, especially in regard to mobility, security, interoperability, and management. In this Reference Architecture template, Research VP Chris Wolf and Research Director Alessandro Perilli outline the core components for an IaaS cloud architectural model that leverages virtualization technologies to successfully deliver IaaS.

Architectural Elements of Software as a Service

28 June 2013

This template offers a high-level architectural model to aid an enterprise in determining its SaaS strategy.

Decision Point for Selecting an Application's Cloud Migration Strategy

3 July 2012

The CIO issues a simple directive: "Move some applications to the cloud." To do this, architects face bewildering choices. In this Decision Point, Richard Watson steers architects to a choice from among five alternatives: rehost on IaaS, refactor using IaaS and PaaS, revise for IaaS or PaaS, rebuild on PaaS, or replace with SaaS. The decision must consider an organization's requirements, evaluation criteria, and architecture principles. However, no alternative offers a silver bullet: All alternatives require architects to understand application migration from multiple perspectives and criteria, such as IT staff skills, existing investments, and application architecture.

Solution Path: Software-as-a-Service Email

14 June 2013

This document defines a solution path that helps enterprises determine when, where and how to leverage the software as a service (SaaS) delivery model for email.

Access to research documents may vary based on your subscription.

Infrastructure

2014 Planning Guide for Private Cloud, Data Center Modernization and Desktop Transformation

3 October 2013

In 2014, organizations will face increasing pressure to support greater business agility, increase service availability and improve efficiency. Decisions regarding private cloud management, data center modernization and desktop transformation will dominate 2014 data center planning and operations.

Climbing the Cloud Orchestration Curve

13 January 2014

Gartner conducted field research on cloud orchestration with 16 IT organizations. While each organization had unique strategies and implementations, many similarities existed. This research summary provides findings and recommendations for enterprise architecture teams orchestrating clouds.

How to Prepare Your Network for Private and Hybrid Cloud Computing

30 July 2013

Data center network architecture must meet the demands imposed by private and hybrid cloud computing. This document provides a step-by-step methodology for maturing a traditional data center network to deliver dynamic provisioning and to leverage new technologies such as SDN and VXLAN.

Architecting Storage for the Internal Cloud: One Step at a Time

30 May 2013

Enterprise organizations are considering internal clouds to increase operational efficiencies, improve business agility, and drive down cost. The internal cloud requires a different storage model than traditional data centers. What does storage for the internal cloud look like? How does storage integrate into infrastructure as a service (IaaS) cloud? What are the key storage considerations organizations need to consider to ensure storage is ready for this transformation?

Evaluation Criteria for Cloud Management Platforms

19 July 2012

The cloud management platform (CMP) market is so crowded, and it is evolving so rapidly, that tracking competing solutions and their capabilities represents a significant challenge. Additionally, CMP vendors differ highly in terms of platform maturity, architecture complexity and feature sets, which makes it harder to identify the best solution for cloud management. Organizations that are evaluating CMP solutions require common criteria to objectively evaluate and compare competing products.

Market Profile: Cloud Management Platforms, 2013

30 November 2012

The cloud management platform (CMP) market is highly dynamic and yet in its infancy because no CMP addresses all use cases out of the box. Mergers and acquisitions complicate CMP selection. Enterprise-grade CMPs are not easily replaced, so organizations should demand long-term vendor commitments.

VMware vCloud Suite 5.1: In-Depth Assessment

11 October 2013

vCloud Suite 5.1 is VMware's cloud management solution. This document reviews the product and compares Enterprise Edition features against the Gartner evaluation criteria for cloud management platforms (CMPs).

Microsoft System Center 2012 SP1: In-Depth Assessment for Cloud Management

25 February 2013

System Center 2012 Service Pack 1 is Microsoft's cloud management solution. This document reviews the product and compares its features against Gartner's evaluation criteria for cloud management platforms (CMPs).

Evaluation Criteria for Server Virtualization Infrastructure Platforms

31 October 2013

This document provides a comprehensive criteria set for assessing server virtualization infrastructure platforms such as Citrix XenServer, Kernel Virtual Machine (KVM) Microsoft Hyper-V, Oracle VM, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization, VMware vSphere and Xen.

In-Depth Assessment of Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V and System Center Virtual Machine Manager

17 January 2014

This document scores Windows Server 2012 R2 Hyper-V and System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) against Gartner's 237-point evaluation criteria for server virtualization infrastructure platforms.

Field Research Summary: Building Internal Clouds

28 September 2011

Gartner conducted field research encompassing 17 end-user organizations that are early adopters of internal/private cloud infrastructure as a service (IaaS). Although each organization had unique strategy, architecture, and implementation details, considerable similarities existed among the participants. In this field research summary, Research VP Chris Wolf reveals the key insights customers learned on their journey to internal/private cloud.

Cloud Backup Assessment: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

13 May 2013

Cloud backup is gaining wider acceptance for distributed systems and data for good reasons. However, data recovery using only cloud backups can get ugly in some scenarios. This document cuts through the vendor hype to present Gartner cloud backup and recovery recommendations and best practices.

Calculating Per-VM Costs in Private Clouds

29 January 2013

Many organizations are interested in implementing chargeback or showback for virtual machines that are hosted in private clouds. The goal is to make business units aware of the cost of services they consume and provide a useful comparison to public cloud costs.

Stuck Between Stations: From Traditional Data Center to Internal Cloud

1 July 2013

Many enterprises understand the attraction of cloud computing but are wary of placing critical applications or sensitive data on public shared infrastructure. Rather than wait out public cloud maturity, organizations can realize many operational benefits by deploying internal clouds to deliver hardware infrastructure as service (HIaaS) today. In this Gartner guidance document, Research VP Chris Wolf outlines the technical requirements, tools, and practical steps necessary to build an internal cloud HIaaS infrastructure.

Managing Network Performance of Cloud-Based Applications

24 June 2013

Cloud computing is a hot topic, and the performance of the network is a critical factor in user satisfaction. This assessment will help organizations decrease the duration of poor-performance incidents by setting up the appropriate technical service level agreements (SLAs) with providers, establishing the appropriate technical metrics for incident rapid-diagnosis (i.e., triage) procedures, and using wide area network (WAN) performance optimization if necessary and possible. The metrics can also be used to evaluate the cost/performance tradeoffs that result from hosting applications in the cloud.

Data Center Sourcing: Cloud, Host, Co-Lo, or Do It Yourself

2 September 2010

The decision to outsource or in-source applications that support a given enterprise function is not a simple matter. Just when IT organizations felt they had figured out what to outsource and what to keep in-house, cloud computing has fueled renewed interest in outsourcing and caused enterprises to reassess their IT services sourcing strategies. In this Decision Point, Managing Vice President Richard Jones describes the decision process to determine when and how enterprise applications should be sourced. Sourcing may be done internally or by one of many externally hosted cloud and managed- services models.

Self-Service Provisioning for Internal Clouds: Buy or Build?

6 September 2011

A fundamental requirement of internal clouds is the provision of on-demand self-service. Provisioning portals and IT service catalogs help reduce operating expense, thus providing benefits for both IT and organization users. IT can reduce architecture approval cycles and provisioning time, while users benefit from increased productivity and easier access to IT services. However, in a market with many immature products, IT must decide whether to buy a commercial solution or build a homegrown self-service platform. In this assessment, Research Director Alessandro Perilli reviews alternatives and provides guidance on how to engineer the internal cloud provisioning stack.

Field Research Actions to Take: Devising a Cloud Application Onboarding Strategy

7 June 2013

During 2011, Gartner interviewed 17 worldwide organizations to learn about their successes and failures implementing internal cloud computing infrastructures. Although each organization built its internal cloud to address unique business needs and use cases, all participants faced similar organizational and cultural challenges during the application onboarding process. In this document, Research Director Alessandro Perilli highlights lessons learned by field research participants and discusses common approaches to building onboarding decision criteria across common deployment alternatives. Those may include software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS), and traditional infrastructure.

Access to research documents may vary based on your subscription.

Applications, Data & Providers

2014 Planning Guide for Cloud Computing

3 October 2013

Cloud computing is no longer a new concept, and many organizations have been consuming cloud services for the past several years. However, in 2014, many organizations will look to move cloud computing past the early phase and constrained use cases and into more widespread, production adoption.

Calculating and Comparing Public Cloud IaaS Costs

19 November 2013

Public IaaS offerings are defined with different virtualization parcels and pricing models, making strategic budget planning and determining correct provider or cloud strategy difficult. Gartner's guidance and tool provides direction on understanding and comparing costs for the public IaaS cloud.

Assessing Business Analytics in the Cloud

26 December 2013

Business analytics in the cloud is an alluring alternative for deploying flexible, cost-effective business analytics, but does it live up to the hype? Technical professionals must understand the application and benefit of cloud BA technology and its potential use as a catalyst for BA.

Devising a Cloud Exit Strategy: Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance

28 March 2013

Savvy organizations that leverage cloud computing realize risk management is part of the game. They expect the unexpected. Hence, they have a comprehensive cloud strategy, including purposefully devised exit plans, before the first application or byte of data is hosted in the public cloud.

Field Research Summary: Public Cloud Adoption

21 January 2013

In 2012, Gartner field research revealed that customers adopting public cloud services struggled with both internal and external barriers. Although these barriers are formidable, Gartner analysis found many best practices that customers can use to overcome them.

Evaluation Criteria for Public Cloud IaaS Providers

18 June 2013

Public cloud infrastructure as a service (IaaS) stands at a crossroads. In one direction, it will mature and host critical enterprise workloads. In the other direction, its adoption will fizzle and it will remain viable only for noncritical applications. In order to succeed, IaaS and its providers must withstand the scrutiny of IT organizations with a core set of enterprise capabilities necessary to run mission-critical business. In this assessment, Gartner identifies such capabilities and provides measurable criteria for public IaaS customers to evaluate enterprise-grade IaaS providers and solutions.

Amazon Web Services (AWS): In-Depth Assessment

17 January 2013

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the market share leader in public cloud infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and attracts much attention from customers. Does AWS meet production-grade enterprise requirements? This assessment evaluates AWS against Gartner's required, preferred and optional IaaS criteria.

Microsoft Windows Azure Infrastructure Services: In-Depth Assessment

6 September 2013

In April 2013, Microsoft entered the public cloud IaaS market by unveiling Azure Infrastructure Services. Azure Infrastructure Services is positioned as an enterprise public cloud IaaS offering. This assessment evaluates Azure IaaS against Gartner's enterprise criteria for public cloud IaaS.

Rackspace Public Cloud: In-Depth Assessment

23 July 2013

Rackspace has a strong brand in the public cloud infrastructure as a service market and is a co-founder of the OpenStack open-source cloud management platform. This assessment scores Rackspace's next-generation public cloud IaaS services against Gartner's IaaS evaluation criteria.

Evaluating Public Cloud SaaS Providers: Developing RFP Criteria

28 June 2013

Technical professionals must scrutinize public cloud software-as-a-service solutions to determine whether providers meet their enterprise's core IT requirements. Gartner identifies such requirements and describes a methodology that customers can use to evaluate leading providers and solutions.

Cloud Suites for Collaboration: Assessing Microsoft Office 365, Google Apps and IBM SmartCloud for Social Business

8 October 2013

Enterprises are investigating cloud offerings for 3CS to achieve lower costs and more agility. Selecting a SaaS 3CS suite is difficult. Which vendor has the best suite? This assessment compares offerings from Google, IBM and Microsoft.

Comparing Cloud Platform Options for .NET Applications

10 June 2013

Organizations are looking for cloud adoption use cases for all their major application platforms, including .NET on Windows. This assessment compares cloud platform options for building and deploying .NET applications and evaluates their fit against common enterprise criteria.

Platform as a Service (PaaS) for Private Cloud

19 June 2013

Organizations are turning toward private platform as a service (PaaS) to gain the benefits of PaaS while avoiding the business and technical risks that come with public cloud computing. Private PaaS allows IT departments to retain control of security and performance characteristics while providing their developers with an agile environment for solution delivery. Enterprises also look to private PaaS as a lever to standardize application infrastructure. This assessment discusses the drivers for private PaaS and different implementation approaches and challenges that organizations will face in this pioneering stage.

What's New in the Office 2013 Productivity Suite, and Should You Move to It?

6 March 2013

The Office 2013 productivity suite sports a new, mobile-friendly interface, leverages the cloud to install software, and integrates with non-Microsoft services. Ultimately, it offers significant benefits for IT, but minimal benefits for users not running Windows-based tablets.

Access to research documents may vary based on your subscription.

Security & Identity

2014 Planning Guide for Security and Risk Management

3 October 2013

Planning for security and IT risk in 2014 requires supporting and balancing game planning, fortification, search and destroy, and (counter) intelligence approaches.

2014 Planning Guide for Identity and Privacy in an Age of Converged IT

3 October 2013

To meet mobility, cloud, information and social requirements, identity and privacy professionals must think about IAM not as a set of rigid capabilities, but as dynamic services with which business can innovate. 2014 will prove to be a pivotal year as IAM serves new constituencies in new ways.

Solution Path: Providing Single Sign-On Access to Cloud Applications

6 December 2013

Single sign-on to SaaS applications is the most common use case for enterprise federation, regardless of whether the user has a mobile device. This Solution Path provides IT organizations with a road map to implement outbound SSO to cloud applications to delight users and increase security.

Preparing Your IAM Environment for Working With Azure AD and Office 365

6 January 2014

IT organizations wishing to adopt Microsoft Office 365 need to address a number of identity and access management issues with their existing on-premises Microsoft Active Directory and federation environments before they can make the move.

Designing Authorization Infrastructure to Power Applications in a Federated and Hybrid Cloud World

15 June 2013

How and where applications decided what actions users were allowed to perform was once relatively straightforward — but no longer. Advancements in externalized authorization technologies and the increase in federated and cloud applications present new challenges and opportunities for identity teams.

Identity and Access Management Within Amazon Web Services' Public Cloud

5 February 2013

Amazon Web Services has amplified its capability in IAM, providing better management and security for the services it offers. However, AWS should be considered as a complex, self-contained environment when integrating with existing enterprise IAM infrastructure and governance processes.

Determining Criteria for Cloud Security Assessment: It's More Than a Checklist

26 June 2013

Enterprises need effective and efficient cloud security assessments. This document provides guidance on developing assessment criteria that leverages existing frameworks for public cloud computing and uses risk to prioritize assessment criteria.

Managing Privacy Risks in the Public Cloud

7 May 2013

Privacy risks in the public cloud can be managed through technical and legal tools that identify, evaluate and mitigate associated risk. Whether the move to the public cloud is proactive or reactive, organizations must and can develop strategies specific to the privacy risks of the public cloud.

Peer Practices: What Are Other Customers Doing in Cloud Security?

24 January 2013

Ever wondered what your peers are doing in cloud security? Then wonder no more. From service provider assessments, to risk management, to innovative security and identity architectures — Gartner provides quotes and findings from early adopter organizations interviewed in our field research project.

The State of Identity and Access Management With Regard to Public and Private Clouds

6 June 2013

As enterprises engage in consuming cloud-based services, IAM capabilities are being employed a bit at a time to solve very specific problems. Identity teams must understand the applicability and maturity of the IAM services they can deploy with respect to the different kinds of cloud environments.

Guidance Framework: Enabling Applications for Externalized Authorization

2 May 2013

How should organizations modify their applications and infrastructure to externalize authorization to eXtensible Access Control Markup Language (XACML)-based policy decision points (PDPs)?

Managing Availability and Performance Risks in the Cloud: Expect the Unexpected

13 June 2013

In this guidance document, Vice President and Distinguished Analyst Drue Reeves lays out a strategy to manage cloud availability and performance risks that can help organizations fully utilize the cloud.

Access to research documents may vary based on your subscription.