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Jamal Mazhar

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Top Stories by Jamal Mazhar

University of Berkley has published an excellent paper on cloud computing, the argument regarding data security in the cloud is that encrypted data in the cloud can be more secure than unencrypted data in the internal datacenter. Almost nobody uses encryption in internal datacenters as they are percieved as secure.  Here is an excerpt from the study: “We believe that there are no fundamental obstacles to making a cloud-computing environment as secure as the vast majority of in-house IT environments, and that many of the obstacles can be overcome immediately with well understood technologies such as encrypted storage, Virtual Local Area Networks, and network middle boxes (e.g. firewalls, packet filters). For example, encrypting data before placing it in a Cloud may be even more secure than unencrypted data in a local data center; this approach was successfully used ... (more)

The Benefits and Challenges of Virtualization, Private and Public Clouds

After my earlier blog discussing the evolution of IT, I had several discussions on the benefits and challenges of virtualization, private, and public clouds.  Following bar chart is an attempt to capture the benefits and challenges of various phases of IT evolution from the days of having dedicated physical servers for each application to the use of public cloud. The chart is self explanatory, some key points to note are: Going from virtualization to private cloud is basically a step to provide self service capabilities to the application owners.  It increases flexibility and als... (more)

Is Amazon following Kaavo in Cloud Management?

Today I received an email from Amazon announcing their AWS CloudFormation Service.  Basically to automate the deployment of complex applications or workloads Amazon is allowing users to capture all the deployment information in one template. They call the template “Stack”.  Taking a top down view of the deployment and capturing all the information for deploying and managing an application or workload in the cloud in one place is at the heart of Kaavo’s Application centric approach.  We released GA version of Kaavo IMOD in early 2009 to enable automatic deployment and runtime man... (more)

Managing IT Risks in a Cloudy World – Take away from Amazon recent outage

Several popular websites and companies were impacted by the recent Amazon cloud outage.  It was quite surprising to see that so many of the companies had no backup plans to restore their applications at an alternate location.  Just because we are using cloud doesn’t mean that we should forget all the lessons we have learned over the years in managing IT risks.  There are several ways companies can mitigate their risk exposure due to these types of outages.  For example one of Kaavo’s customers runs their application across Amazon and Rackspace cloud using Kaavo IMOD; ... (more)

Cloud Management: The Agentless Approach

Automating the deployment and runtime management of large application deployments running on multiple cloud resources across various cloud providers is a challenging problem. Managing remote resources is not a new problem the big difference is that in cloud the resources are added and removed dynamically and at a larger scale. Before cloud people have built management systems using two approaches: Agent Agentless Historically the major trade-off between the agent and the agentless approach has been control vs. rollout time and maintenance costs. You usually get more control with t... (more)