By Christo Briedenhann, Country manager for Riverbed Technology Africa
1. Virtualisation Extends to the Edge
Virtualisation of data centres has caused a ripple effect and will be increasingly making its way to the edge of the organisation in 2013. Virtualisation technology has enabled enterprises to create multipurpose “branch office boxes,” completely eliminating the need for conventional remote servers.
2. The Stateless Branch Becomes a Reality for More Enterprises
In parallel with consolidation within a branch, advances in technology allow enterprises to build “stateless branch” offices. Achieving 100 percent consolidation of edge servers, applications and data into the data centre lets IT more effectively secure, manage and protect its resources.
3. Mobility Becomes More Pervasive
There will be greater penetration of mobile devices in enterprises than fixed access devices in 2013. With the availability of 802.11n Wi-Fi and further enhancements coming such as 802.11ac in 2013 as well as mobile networks increasingly using 4G, the typical office will be all wireless soon. More enterprises will also inevitably need to incorporate BYOD policies into its IT planning, especially as enterprises plan and manage BYOD as it converges with virtual desktops adoption.
4. Disaster Recovery Becomes Highly Automated
Disaster recovery will become more automated with simplification of processes and failover in mind in 2013. More organisations are upgrading networking connections to remote offices and adding SANs with virtual servers so they can replicate critical data to these branch locations. Other enterprises are choosing to move to the cloud as providers are continuing to make it an even more affordable option. DR in the cloud is also gaining momentum as cloud storage is being leveraged as a dedicated DR site.
5. Big Data Leads to Federation
Big data is driving an analytics movement in the network. More organisations will look for ways to consolidate as well as looking to invest in federation solutions, especially those that are cloud-based, to abstract, gather, transform and combine internal and external data from different physical locations and storage types into a consistent format.