November 10, 2010, 5:06 PM — No matter whether you want an internal, external or hybrid cloud, or even if you're satisfied plugging a little SAAS here and there into a virtual infrastructure, you can't get away from the limits of hardware.
If you run any kind of IT operation, no matter how virtualized and abstracted you get, you have to deal with hardware somewhere along the line. Capital costing, hands-on-supporting, floor-space-taking, power-gobbling, big-fat-asset-depreciating hardware that drops 20 percent in value the microsecond you drive it off the lot.
Even Don Whittington -- the Domino Sugar CIO who has moved almost his entire IT infrastructure into clouds, hosted environments and various other levels of abstraction for a decade -- had desktops and laptops and departmental servers and switches and routers and cabling and all kinds of other things that are as good at gathering dust as they are moving data.
So, even though cloud computing is going to so completely change IT that veteran geeks will get lost on their way back from wasted visits to userland because the dank basements into which IT is crammed at many companies will have been cleaned out, air-freshened and replaced with banks and banks of outbound marketers on countless VoIPphones.
Actually, that's an exaggeration. In its most recent Hype Cycle report -- which simultaneously feeds on hype and feeds on it, Gartner reports that Cloud Computing has reached the peak of its hype cycle and is poised over a dramatic drop into the Pit of Disillusionment.
Which all sounds a lot more D&D than IT, but take my word for it, that's what it is.
Neither the hype cycle nor the technologies customers that ride its roller-coaster market-graph will ever escape the need for IT to plan for the "immediate" needs of business units, whether the technology to fulfill those needs is imaginary or not.
Either way, Hyper9 and companies like it are ready.
Hyper9 released version 3 of its capacity planning software with new features designed to cover virtual-server installations with more than 10,000 virtual machines, and others designed to cover capacity planning, usage monitoring and chargeback on (primarily) private clouds.