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APR/MAY 2013 VO L .1 NO. 4 $9.95


No excuses on compliance IT, politics and the truth Smarter ICT for smarter cities Root and branch infrastructure management

At Hitachi, we’re focused on creating a better place to live by providing technology that leads to a greener society. Technology that intelligently manages energy usage and natural resources to create low carbon societies that work in harmony with the natural environment. And in doing so, create a much healthier relationship between the earth, and the people who live on it. This is our vision, and at Hitachi we call it Social Innovation Business.

Virtualisation is everywhere. We spoke to a representative from CSIRO and learned that manufacturers are looking at virtual factories. Almost everything can be commoditised and operated on a ‘user pays’ basis. In chatting to some data centre managers and analysts, we discussed what the perfect data centre would look like. One gave the surprising answer that he would expect no people to ever need to enter unless there was an emergency. Before virtualisation was prevalent, hardware guys would regularly enter the data centre to install devices and make changes. Today, we can redistribute computing loads across multiple devices. Almost every specialised device in the data centre and network can be virtualised using software and commodity hardware. This month we take a look at what’s happening with virtualisation and what the next wave of changes means for IT managers.

a p r / m a y

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INSIDE 10 | Tech Toys 12 | Cloud services: smarter ICT for smarter cities 14 | Antivirus delivers huge cut in scan time 16 | IT, politics and the truth 18 | The Great Disruptor 20 | Storage solution gives film company 20TB daily 24 | Peer2Peer: Alan Perkins, Rackspace 36 | Asia Cloud Forum 42 | The challenges of complexity

Compliance is becoming an increasingly important and complex part of the CIO’s brief. Changes to laws and regulations mean that IT leaders need to proactively deal with compliance and build it into the DNA of how they design, deploy and operate systems. Make sure you find us at CeBIT from 28-30 May. Anthony Caruana, Editor

F E A T U R E S 04 | Getting real about virtualisation

cover image: ©

Virtualisation is the single biggest change to how we have managed our systems for the last decade or so. But what about everything else? And does virtualising everything need a new set of skills?

32 | Growing a distributed network with root and branch infrastructure management A look at the evolution of out-ofband infrastructure management tools and technologies shows their

26 | No excuses on compliance With mobility, BYOD and cloud services changing the security profile of businesses and greater focus on regulatory compliance by regulators, the nature of managing compliance in IT departments is changing.

ALSO available in DIGITAL This magazine and a complete library of back issues are available in digital format at latest_issues

growing impact.


w w w . t e c h n o l o g y d e c i s i o n s . c o m . a u


Anthony Caruana


Virtualisation is the single biggest change to how we have managed our systems for the last decade or so. As a result of virtualisation we have slashed the number of physical devices we have to manage, resulting in smaller data centres, lower power consumption, better business continuity and greater flexibility. But what about everything else? And does virtualising everything need a new set of skills?

But scratch the surface and you’ll find

This initiative, dubbed Quick Connect,

that virtualisation has hit the desktop

allows a staff member to walk up to a

- it’s just not happening the way many

computer, tap a sensor with their ID

expected. As well as the traditional view

card and within a couple of seconds

of using the end-point device as a type

their session, hosted on a server in the

of dumb terminal, there are many other

local data centre, opens and they can

ways to use virtualisation for delivery of

continue working. This works with

desktop applications.

several thousand users accessing clinical applications from in excess of 600

Application virtualisation is a very cost-

computers on the local network.

effective way to deliver software to users. In many schools, where old applications

One of the big challenges in the suc-

often abound, packaging an application

cessful deployment of VDI has been

and delivering it in its own virtualised

throughput. Regardless of what hyper-

container gives some breathing space as old

visor or software solution is in place,

applications can run on newer platforms.

getting data back and forth from the


© witherington



Despite the many advances made in VDI,

server to the client has always been a

there’s still some resistance to deploying

critical element when establishing a

it, particularly as the delivery of desktops

VDI implementation. However, several

shifts from desktop teams to server and

recent technical changes, and their better

network personnel.

value, have made it possible for VDI to be deployed with better outcomes.

“It’s not only cultural but it’s political. You usually find that there’s a different

“One of the catalysts has certainly been

group of people looking at the servers

flash storage becoming more main-

to those managing desktops. This [VDI]

stream. That has helped solve a lot of the

solution is a server-based solution de-

IO problems that we saw in some of the

livering a virtual desktop. Who, in the

early architectures,” according to Adrian

n case you missed it, it’s the year

organisation, will own this?” according

De Luca from Hitachi Data Systems.

of VDI - again. We’ve been hear-

to Nabeel Youakim from Citrix. De Luca also commented on the number

ing this for the last few years but according to Kevin McIsaac, an

One of the issues for St Vincent’s Hospital

of new entrants to the storage market

analyst with IBRS, “There will never be

in Melbourne is the mobility of staff.

who are bringing flash-based solutions

a year of VDI - ever. The reason is it’s

VDI provided a solution that allowed the

to the market, making a specific grab

based on the assumption that it’s the

hospital to make effective use of VDI. St

for customers looking to resolve disk

next replacement for the desktop and

Vincent’s uses Microsoft Remote Desktop

IO issues associated with VDI.

it’s not. VDI is an interesting way of

Services in combination with contactless

deploying a desktop for a very specific

proximity cards. Delivery is over a network

“At the end of the day, VDI is just another

set of use cases.”

using Cisco and F5 hardware.

enterprise application. Why should we



create separate silos of compute, network

The network

With SDN, the benefits may be less

and storage just so you can get some cost

There’s a lot of hype today for software

clear-cut, although Dustin Kehoe, an

benefits? Some of these flash-only players

defined networking (SDN). SDN looks to

Associate Research Director with IDC,

become a one-trick pony. Although they

be on a steep growth curve with Gartner

says there are clear benefits.

might seem too cheap to purchase the

suggesting that it will be one of the key

long-term running cost and management

issues for enterprises to consider.

will start to see the same issues that drove

continuity and disaster recovery. The With SDN the software and intelligence

second thing about SDNs is also au-

that is required to manage the network

tomation. If you go back to this thing


is abstracted from the hardware. Alan

we call cloud, and we’re talking about

While it’s critical to ensure that there’s

Perkins of Rackspace says: “It separates

virtualising server, compute and stor-

enough computing power back at the

the software in terms of the intelligence

age, one thing we’ve failed to this date

server to handle the processing of many

around where the networks are being

I would argue is automation. We’re not

hundreds of clients at the same time,

routed from the actual switches.” This

really automated, because the network

it’s critical to not forget the network.

allows businesses to create more sophis-

isn’t automated. Let’s face it, the network

Ultimately, the success or failure of a

ticated topologies to ensure that data

requires lots of manual processes.”

VDI deployment will be determined by

routes according to the best business

the capacity of LAN, WAN and cellular

logic rather than via physical switching.

us to consolidate SANs 10 years ago.”

links between the end-point device and

The automation benefits are certainly possible although SDNs aren’t yet widely

We’re already virtualising significant

seen in enterprise networks. McIsaac

parts of our corporate networks with

says: “If you’re a Telstra or an Amazon

One of the triggers for increasing up-

virtual switches connecting virtual serv-

or a Google then it’s probably very im-

take of VDI has been the rise of BYOD.

ers both inside and across physical hosts.

portant. But if you’re a typical enterprise

Desktop virtualisation makes it possible

But what are the benefits?

in Australia or an SMB, eventually it will

the servers.

to deploy applications to a wide variety


“I’m seeing SDN actually for business

trickle down but I don’t see it as being

of mobile devices without the need to

With server virtualisation, according

develop bespoke apps for each mobile

to Rhys Evans from Thomas Duryea


Consulting: “Server virtualisation was

But if you’re a service provider, the

a slam dunk. Let’s take your 100 physi-

benefits may be another slam sunk, ac-

Damien Murphy from Riverbed says:

cal servers and turn them into six. We

cording to Kash Shaikh, Senior Director

“We’re definitely seeing, although it’s not

can show a cost reduction in terms of

for Product & Technical Marketing at

talked about, how BYOD equals VDI.

power, cooling, hardware, maintenance

HP. “In a public cloud environment,

When you speak to organisations doing

contracts - you show someone the

a mid-sized public cloud provider has

BYOD they’re building a layer of VDI.”

numbers and it financially makes sense.”

about 10,000 provisions per day. And,

hugely important now.”




be spun up and deployed quickly, the


skills required are no longer around the physical deployment of hardware. The focus shifts to application management.


“It becomes no different than putting another application on your PC. As long as someone knows how to use that virtualised environment, you can

let’s say, if each provision takes about 20

represents is a different management

then move ahead,” says Timothy Gentry

commands, that’s about 200,000 com-

paradigm,” he adds.

from Avaya.

good IT admin, a guy who really knows

When should you say no?

This leads to a shift in the skills we

which command to enter when and they

Are there times when virtualisation isn’t

might need in our IT departments.

can really punch in the commands really

the right option? In the vast majority of

While there will continue to be a need

fast, it takes up to one minute to enter

cases the relatively minor performance

for some specialist engineers for the

these commands. And how many hours

hit that might be experienced when plac-

network, servers, storage and other

that translates into, 3333 hours. That’s

ing a hypervisor between an application

critical hardware, we will increasingly

about 420 admins.”

and the hardware is greatly outweighed

need to consider application engineers.

mands per day. And if you have a really

by the benefits of redundancy, flexibility

The data centre

and cost management. However, there

Gentry adds: “You don’t need to bi-

“Providing the data centre as a logical unit

may be legacy applications that expect

furcate between a telecom person and

that can be defined in software. There’s

to operate with direct access to hardware

a networking person. Why can’t it all

a further separation of the logical and

and won’t work when there’s a hypervi-

be one person because it rides on one

physical that unlocks a lot of opportuni-

sor involved.

application layer?”

Aaron Steppat from VMware says: “It’s

When you hire a unified communications

At some point, we will still get down to

better to focus on the modernisation

specialist, they won’t be a PBX engineer.

physical assets that need to be managed

of an application that can run on a

They will be a communications specialist

and maintained. While it’s all well and

commoditised platform and get all the

that understands the interplay between

good to talk about virtualised servers,

benefits of virtualisation versus trying to

the network, the unified communications

networks and data centres, it’s not possible

hold it back and have it on an environ-

software and the virtualisation platform.

to virtualise everything. However, what

ment where ultimately the performance

we’re seeing is a continued, sustained

isn’t guaranteed.”

ties,” says Charles Clarke from Veeam.

push to separate the physical and logical elements of our infrastructure.

spin up a new server at almost a moMcIsaac adds: “People are still reluctant

ment’s notice, there’s a new challenge.

to deploy mission-critical, large-scale

In the past, adding a new server to the

This offers many opportunities for greater

databases on virtual machines. There

business was a non-trivial decision.

flexibility and redundancy, although it

is no reason today from a hypervisor

We’re seeing environments where the

does require a shift in how we think

scalability or availability point of view

number of servers greatly exceeds the

about systems. Whereas we used to look at

not to do that. You might not for other

number of staff.

physical devices and considered the intel-

reasons but it’s because of the capability

ligence built into that equipment, we’re

of the infrastructure.”

now moving towards software emulating

“Now we’re seeing this sprawl. We’re seeing companies with 150 staff and

People and management

three or four hundred servers. But they

Management of virtualised environments

don’t need them. They just find it too

“What the software defined data centre

presents IT managers with some new

easy to do it. That’s where we’re seeing

and software defined network really

challenges. Now that the servers can

the complexity,” says Evans.

that intelligence on commodity hardware.


Now that we’re able to quickly and easily


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loud services adoption will

more rapidly and without the need for

accelerate the creation of

capital investment and the implementation

smarter cities by overcoming

of physical ICT infrastructure.

organisational inertia and

enabling more rapid propagation of innova-

This approach is a major transformation

tion. Cities that remain bogged down with

in the logic of ICT, which will offer huge

outdated ICT capabilities will fall behind

benefits for cities that can make the mindset

their peers and be overlooked by globally

shift from ‘owning and operating’ dedicated

mobile investment, businesses, events and

ICT assets to ‘sourcing and orchestrating’


shared ICT services.

Historically, governments and city adminis-

One of the main benefits of cloud services

trations have adopted a ‘craftwork’ approach

is that they combat organisational inertia.

to ICT. Each agency or city sought to

Because cloud services already exist and can

autonomously buy, build and run its own

be assessed and tested prior to purchase,

in-house ICT systems and operations, lead-

they give executives an increased aware-

ing to piecemeal development of fragmented,

ness of the art-of-the-possible and also an

small-scale systems. As ICT systems have

increased sense of confidence that a project

become more critical to city operations, the

can actually be delivered as planned.

costs and challenges of keeping these systems up to date, resilient and secure have grown.

A cloud service created for one city can very quickly be visible to, and available to, many

In parallel, we have seen the evolution of

cities. As the market matures, and as gov-

a significant change in the ICT industry

ernments and cities increase their adoption

towards the creation of large global shared

of cloud services, we will see the creation

services for computing infrastructure and

of portals, hubs and app stores focused on

applications. The emergence of robust and

smart city applications and services.

proven enterprise-grade cloud services is providing new options for sourcing ICT

Smarter cities will deploy cloud services


to innovate more quickly, adding value to their natural geographical and cultural


The cloud services delivery model is ideally

assets and developing new ways to achieve

suited to the challenges of smart cities be-

superior economic, social and environ-

cause it provides a means for cities of any size

mentally sustainable growth. Cities that

to benefit from both the economies of scale

remain bogged down with 20th-century

provided by global shared services platforms

technology, with piecemeal, fragmented

as well as to access a growing portfolio of

systems and data, risk falling behind their

leading-edge ICT applications. On-demand,

peers and being overlooked by globally

pay-as-you-go, commercial models mean

mobile investment, businesses, events

that applications can be deployed much

and citizens.

Dr Steve Hodgkinson, Research Director IT, Asia Pacific, is the director of Ovum’s Government practice in Australia and New Zealand, and is a member of Ovum’s Public Sector and Health Sciences team. He covers e-government strategy, the public sector CIO role, shared services and cloud computing, and aims to provide practical guidance for executive decision-makers by explaining the relevance and impact of technology developments. Prior to joining Ovum, he was the Deputy CIO and Director of eGovernment Strategy & Policy for the Victorian state government.



he Royal Flying Doctor Service Western Operations

RFDSWO decided to replace its antivirus. To this end,

(RFDSWO) has implemented a new antivirus system,

the organisation conducted an antivirus shootout, pitting trial

cutting full system scan times from about three hours

products from Symantec, McAfee, AVG, Sophos and Webroot

to under three minutes.

against one another.

The not-for-profit organisation, which provides a 24-hour

The products had similar results when detecting infections.

emergency service across Western Australia, has five main bases,

“It really boiled down to how easy was the product to deploy,

with hundreds of doctors, nurses, pilots and support staff operating

how easy was it to manage and how well it behaved on the

out of other remote locations around the state.

actual device itself,” given that some of the RFDSWO’s laptops

The organisation previously used LANDesk for endpoint management, employing the included Kaspersky engine for

RFDSWO clocked its existing antivirus product as taking 2

antivirus and antispyware. Over time, the organisation began

hours, 54 minutes and 37 seconds for the first full system scan

having problems with the antivirus

on one PC, whereas the Webroot service

product. Signature updates proved

took 2 minutes and 47 seconds for the

particularly problematic.

first full system scan.

“It would download [updates] to

The existing antivirus solution

a central repository on a network and

reportedly took up 737 MB of disk,

then push that out to all the client

while the Webroot solution took up

[devices]. If you had laptops in a

1.5 MB on each PC.

mobile environment, they wouldn’t

Following the shootout, the

get that update until they got back

organisation selected the Webroot

into the network. In our environment,

option: the cloud-based SecureAnywhere

that could be several weeks. We knew

Business - Endpoint Protection service.

… that we had a gap in our security

Turany saw an “immediate”

solution,” said RFDSWO ICT manager

performance boost to end-user

Matthew Turany.

PCs. Previously, the helpdesk would

Sometimes updates would stall or,

receive four to six calls a day about

in some cases, get corrupted in transit,

PC performance problems that could

which would cause the antivirus engine

be traced to the bloated antivirus

to stop working on the laptop or PC.

product. Since installing the new

“You’d have to manually get in and

system, there have been no performance

delete the update directory”, wasting

complaints that were related to the

a few man hours, Turany said.

antivirus software.

While initially it was “quite nice, a fairly decent product”, the antivirus

Endpoints no longer need to connect to RFDSWO’s network to get

engine became bloated over time. Updates grew larger - reaching

updates. Instead, antivirus definitions can be updated whenever

hundreds of MBs - and the engine itself was taking up a couple

a machine goes on the internet. A PC can go months without

of hundred MBs of RAM on end-user machines, impacting PC

touching the RFDSWO network and Turany will have no concerns


about that device having up-to-date definitions.

The product also allowed a couple of infections “that we


were getting on in years.

were quite shocked at, because they were old viruses”.

Turany said RFDSWO now has a “higher level of confidence in our protection and … in the performance of the product”.

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n this age of politics, where policy is

Brendan O’Connor, claimed that growth

so heavily influenced by focus groups,

of 457 visas had caused a drop in Austral-

the truth presented to the public can

ian IT salaries.

be compromised. The claim was part of a broader assertion

Policies are often not representative of

by O’Connor that Australian businesses,

ideology. Instead they are chess pieces that

across several industries, are using the 457

politicians manoeuvre around the board,

visa program as their first option to fill

based on how many percentage points

positions. He said that over the last several

they may win in a marginal constituency,

years, the number of 457 applications has

or how they may help a politician’s posi-

been growing faster than the country’s

tion against an opposing party, or even

total employment rate.

someone within their own party. Prime Minister Julia Gillard also chimed IT is not exempt from these manipulations,

in, saying she was concerned that em-

and we often see technology decisions that

ployers were abusing the 457 program

affect our businesses - and us as private

and that Australian workers were missing

citizens - being made on the basis of how

out on jobs.

they may help those in parliament. Regarding the IT sector, O’Connor claimed Australia is sliding inexorably towards its


September Federal election, and things

a) the IT sector was “probably the sector

in Canberra are looking messy - and

that receives most of the 457s”, and that

increasingly farcical. In recent times we’ve witnessed failed no confidence votes,

b) over “several years” wages have fallen

leadership spills without challengers and

“between five and 12% in those positions

continued cabinet bloodletting.

that are held by 457 applicants” in the IT industry, causing “an adverse impact on

In between these dramas, we’ve also seen

jobs in that sector held by local workers”.

both major parties try to exploit IT-related The first of these claims contradicts official statistics from the Department of In March, the spotlight fell on 457 visas -

Immigration and Citizenship.

the documents that allow foreign citizens


to stay in Australia temporarily for work.

Between 1 July 2012 and 31 January 2013,

The federal Minister for Immigration,

3990 457 visas were granted in the ‘Infor-


issues to gain public favour.

Andrew Collins

mation Media and Telecommunications’

Looking further back, the Information

in at 6th place with 8.3% of all 457s in

category, placing it in fourth place out of

Media and Telecommunications category

the current financial year so far, 6th last

20 categories, behind Construction (5060),

placed fourth every financial year back to

financial year, 8th in ’10-’11 and 11th in

Health Care and Social Assistance (4980)

’09-’10, where it was second. In ’08-’09 it

’09-’10. However you spin it, IT is not

and ‘Other Services’ (4780).

placed sixth and in ’07-’08 it placed fifth.

the lead industry for 457 visas, accord-

With those 3990 visas, Information Media

Perhaps the Minister was just being selec-

If O’Connor has some magical stats

and Telecommunications accounted for

tive with his statistics and his crime is

that would prove his points, he should

9.6% of all 457 visas granted this financial

simply not giving context. The numbers

reveal them.)

year, and 11% last financial year - a far

vary by state, and in NSW, the Information

cry from “most”.

Media and Telecommunications category

As for the comments about salaries:

has indeed been granted the most 457 visas

O’Connor’s claim of an “adverse impact”

in the current financial year.

at some point in the last “several years” is

ing to the Department of Immigration.

pretty nebulous. Since he hasn’t specified But in every other state and territory, it

what form these supposed effects took,

ranked lower (3rd in Vic and 5th in Tas;

or when they occurred, it’s impossible

between 8th and 13th in the other five).

to ascertain whether his claim has merit. If he wants the public to believe him, he

Being picky with statistics in such a man-

needs to be specific, and his claims must

ner is supremely bad practice: you can

be verifiable.

establish anything as ‘fact’ if you ignore the available evidence based on your whims.

Of course, the federal opposition is just

It’s worrying if a federal Minister is pre-

as guilty of throwing IT into their spin

senting a fact about one state as though

machine and cranking the handle. Tony

it represents all of them.

Abbott managed to tie the discussion to the at-best tangentially related issue of

Maybe he just wasn’t correctly briefed by

asylum seekers, saying: “This is a Prime

his team and the information he had on

Minister who can’t stop the boats, so what’s

hand was flawed. I would argue that as

she doing? She wants to stop the brains

government representative of a particular

from coming to Australia.”

portfolio, he has a responsibility to check his own facts before he comments publicly.

Now, I’m not saying that employers aren’t

In that position of authority, his word

exploiting 457 visas. That could well be

informs debate, and debate is useless if

the case. I’m simply pointing out that,

its assumptions are wrong. Blurting out

thanks to their own antics, politicians are

falsities - even if done innocently - is still

making it hard for anyone to trust them

spreading misinformation.

when it comes to these matters.

There’s also the possibility O’Connor

Also, this column may seem pedantic. But

flat out lied. But I’m ruling that one out

I believe we must hold those that claim

- politicians would never intentionally

to represent us to the highest standards,

deceive the people they represent, right?

particularly when they’re developing policies that affect us.

(I am assuming that ‘Information Media and Telecommunications’ is the best ana-

Often in politics, spin comes before

logue for IT in the 457 visa categories.

sense and fact. Keep that in mind the

The next closest match is ‘Professional

next time a pollie opens their mouth

Scientific and Technical’, which comes

and mentions IT.



D I S R U P TO R Today, Australia is facing disruption on a number of fronts. Our resources boom is cycling down, equity is volatile and investment credit available to business is entering a new era of caution. Many eyes are looking to ICT even as technology itself continues to disrupt key areas of our lives such as health, retail, education, entertainment and even our sense of community and identity.


o paraphrase Mother Theresa,

and university ICT departments shrink in

only people can achieve great

line with dwindling student enrolments.

things. To me this means the

We must attract more students to ICT and

technological ‘power’ needed

show that it is a rewarding and exciting

by Australia to meet the new challenges

career. Our own research showed wages

in the economy, environment and society

in the sector rose above CPI last year; we

is underpinned only by the power and

know that technology underpins every

performance of people; it is not technol-

other vertical and is increasingly dominant

ogy itself that we need to focus on, but

in entertainment, fashion and design.

technology skills. There has also been a concerning decline Australia’s digital economy is almost 8%

in the interest of women in working in

of GDP. Not many people realise that this

ICT. In the last year, female participation

is more than many other industry verticals

in the sector declined by 5%. Given that

and almost as much as mining’s contribu-

ICT has one of the lowest gender diversity

tion. This makes the right policy focus

rankings of any industry in Australia,

on technology skills even more pressing.

this should especially alarm us. A recent

Australian Computer Society research has illuminated a number of critical policy areas that are inhibiting - and indeed threatening - Australia’s digital economy. While the ACS is active as an organisation in working with policy makers to address these issues, as individuals working in the sector we all have a role to play where we


can improve things. university survey of women who dropped Two of the critical issues I believe we can

out of ICT courses said they did not feel

all help address are about skills supply and

the course was structured towards the

skills re-supply for our digital economy.

reality of their lives. At the same time, older workers of both genders are find-

Alan Patterson, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Computer Society



Today, the number of domestic students

ing it hard to access retraining that will

choosing ICT at university is less than

improve their employability in a dynamic

half than a decade ago. Yet ICT employ-

and shifting market.

ment grew by 100,000 in the same period. Without addressing this critical shortage of

Individually, as technology professionals,

domestic supply, Australia’s digital econ-

we need to address these challenges now.

omy will be at risk of greater offshoring.

One simple way we can each do this is

Offshoring itself will create a brain drain

to look for and encourage success stories

as more ICT R&D is conducted offshore

and tell them to the world.



ark Road Post Production, an NZ-based film company,

Park Road had already utilised Quantum StorNext FX

has implemented a storage system that can manage

for four years for non-Apple SAN clients. Its legacy archive

up to 20 TB of data each day.

solution software used a Scalar 50 tape library with older-

The company was looking for a new way to

generation tape drives.

manage the masses of data involved in digital filmmaking.

At the recommendation of Park Road’s technology partner,

Uncompressed digital film can translate into hundreds of

Factorial, the facility decided to take a look at a larger Quantum

terabytes of data per project, and the system the company

solution comprising StorNext software and a Scalar i6000

was using to manage the content was proving inadequate.

enterprise tape library with Quantum tape drives.

The facility had a traditional archive system built around

Park Road elected to move forward with the upgrade at

Atempo Time Navigator and direct-attached tape libraries, but

the time of its SAN expansion. The StorNext licence allowed

wanted a solution with more speed, efficiency and scalability.

the facility to deploy Storage Manager to automatically move

“We faced a very unique challenge on one particular

data between high-performance disk and a large-capacity

project, and we realised that we would need to dramatically

tape library archive.

increase our throughput and capacity to meet the potential

The i6000 also provides an increase in the amount of data

demand,” says Phil Oatley, Head of Technology for Park Road.

that can be kept for near-term re-evaluation or processing as well as long-term archive. It can add new slots as needed and supports the LTO-5 tape drives. Since implementing the new system, performance has increased for Park Road. Source data is acquired onto a SAN, either on-set or from field LTO-5 tapes, for collaborative processing via multiple SGO Mistika workstations. These access source material concurrently over 8 Gbps Fibre Channel. The source data and all metadata generated on-set and derived through processing is archived to LTO5 tape via Storage Manager. Tapes are retained within the i6000 to facilitate retrieval back to the SAN for further processing. Tapes are also ‘vaulted’ from

“Each shoot day would see us process an average of six


the library for long-term archive.

to 12 terabytes of new material, and on a really busy day

The system at Park Road routinely processes multiple

this could reach 20 terabytes. All new material needed to be

terabytes of data in just a matter of hours and can handle

processed and delivered to the client within 12 hours.”

in excess of 20 TB/day at peak load.

Park Road had long leveraged its SAN infrastructure

“One of the most important factors in selecting a new

for real-time processing of picture content, and the facility

solution was ensuring that the existing creative workflow

decided that a further extension of this infrastructure utilising

that filmmakers enjoy at Park Road was not compromised,

virtualised tape storage would be the best approach.

but rather enhanced by any technology decision,” says Oatley.

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PEER PEER The cloud gives unprecedented opportunities for IT to adapt to rapidly shifting business priorities.




t was about eight years ago when

Before all of this, I was always nerv-

I first started grappling with con-

ous around the end of June, Altium’s

cepts that we now know as cloud

financial year end. Altium at the time

computing. I was CIO at Altium,

could do around 8% of the annual sales

a company specialising in software for

on the very last day of the year and if

electronic engineers. With a high-tech

the goods weren’t shipped, the revenue

workforce and culture of innovation, 300

didn’t count. Systems needed to support

staff spread across 15 offices around the

a huge spike, and the pressure each year

world, and 97% export revenue, it was

was enormous. I still remember my first

the perfect candidate to become one of

June end after switching to the cloud

the pioneers for cloud.

and the sigh of relief as I was able to sleep knowing that the infrastructure

We had to be able to deliver multigigabyte

would cope.

software updates to 50,000 customers simultaneously. We needed global real-time

I won several awards for moving Altium

reporting across different business models,

to the cloud, but I wasn’t satisfied.

tax systems, buying patterns. Our staff

I would give talks about why other

needed to access information globally as

businesses should be adopting these

they worked on global deals and complex

technologies, but the focus was too often

customer issues. We needed a platform

on cost and not on the fact that here

for the business systems that would cope

is a paradigm that enables businesses

with corporate strategic changes. And most

to focus on what is truly important to

importantly, we needed to be able to think

them. I have come to understand that

about the business direction without hav-

what cloud really brings the world is

ing to worry about how the infrastructure

the Freedom to be Remarkable, the

would cope with potentially enormous

Freedom to help a business truly fulfil

demands: the emerging Internet of Things

its potential.

had scary implications for the amount of data we would potentially have to process.

There are several pieces of advice I would like to share for anyone consider-


Alan Perkins is Director of Technology and Product, Asia Pacific, Rackspace. Previously, Perkins spent more than 10 years at Altium in key leadership roles including seven years as CIO. In 2012, he was named by The Australian as one of the Top 20 people to watch in technology. In 2009, he was a finalist for the IDC Asia Pacific CIO of the Year Award and won an Enterprise Innovation Award for Cloud innovation from IDC.

We were the first company to see Salesforce

ing moving into the cloud. Firstly, you

as a business platform, writing extensive

need to ensure that you know how to

modifications covering almost all aspects

get your data out again. It is not suf-

of our business, consuming more than

ficient to know in principle, you need to

two million API calls a day. We were early

test an actual extraction works in your

adopters of Amazon web services and

time frame and provides your data in

one of the first companies in the region

a usable format. But most importantly,

to adopt Google Enterprise. Our finance,

understand that cloud computing can

project management and case systems were

enable you to do things that would

moved to the cloud.

otherwise be impracticable.



ON COMPLIANCE Anthony Caruana

Over the last couple of years, the IT landscape has made significant changes and there are more to come. With mobility, BYOD and cloud services changing the security profile of businesses and greater focus on regulatory compliance by regulators, the nature of managing compliance in IT departments is changing.


What does compliance mean?

Has increased public attention caused businesses to rethink their IT compliance strategies?

Almost all our panellists agreed that compliance is about adherence to rules. Smith summarised compliance as

the regulatory body, they have ended up on the front page of the newspaper through a failure of controls.” Kawalec noted that one of the reasons compliance management is an ongoing activity is the shifting threat landscape.

“taking regulatory statements and poli-

All four panellists were unanimous here

“Threats are becoming more sophisti-

cies and procedures and making sure that

- the spotlight is definitely on compa-

cated, frequent and damaging, making

the organisation complies with those

nies that don’t meet their compliance

it more difficult for enterprises and



government agencies to stay secure. Add

Havers went a little further by suggesting

McLagan said: “Public attention is

potential for human error, the need

that compliance has three distinct layers. “A

requiring companies to give a more

for better governance and compliance

governance or policy layer, where business

sustained focus to compliance initia-

strategies is increasing.”

and regulatory access policies can be es-

tives. Consumers and businesses alike

tablished and reviewed, approved, granted

are rapidly making decisions on where

and revoked accordingly; an operations

to spend their time and efforts based

layer where that policy is translated into

on the reputation of the organisation

IT systems and where an individual is

they are working for or with. Failures in

provisioned or de-provisioned as a user

operational activities, resulting in loss of

in a system; and a program layer which

data and information, brings bad press

ensures that all access paths to that ap-

to companies, and the ease in which the

plication or data are managed according

public can raise the bar on expectations,

The number, complexity and pace of

to the current, correct access policy.”

or express their dissatisfaction through

change is the key challenge in the ongo-

social media and the press, is driving

ing management of compliance at what

Kawalec noted that simply meeting gen-

companies to rethink their approach

McLagan calls “an alarming rate”.

eral compliance obligations might not be

to compliance.”

to that overloaded staff with greater

What are the biggest challenges to managing compliance for the next couple of years?

ance is insufficient for long-term enterprise

Both Kawalec and McLagan highlighted

increasing volume of regulatory change.

success as establishment and implementa-

that compliance is not a point-in-time

How do you keep abreast of that? How

tion of those compliance requirements are

activity. As McLagan put it: “Examples

do you understand the implications

reactive and lag behind the speed of threat

of this are demonstrated time and time

for that?”

evolution. Therefore, companies must take

again where companies have achieved

appropriate steps to be proactive in their

compliance and yet, a couple of months

Coupled with the increasing compli-

approach to compliance.”

after achieving the tick of approval from

ance obligations are the tectonic shifts


John Havers, CEO and founder, First Point Global

Andrzej Kawalec, Chief Technologist, Enterprise Security Services, Hewlett-Packard

Steve Smith, Vice President, Capgemini

Shaun McLagan, General Manager, RSA, ANZ

©šan Jankovic

Smith said: “There appears to be an

enough. “Simply meeting general compli-


in technical environments. “Traditional boundaries to information sharing are disintegrating rapidly, with large amounts of information changing hands across continents every minute. Big data is gobbling up bandwidth, cloud capabilities are becoming more viable and enablement

Does the evolution of big data and the cloud mean that businesses need to rethink their compliance strategies?

of big data is that there will be more information and data made visible to the organisation and the result is that there are now more areas where compliance focus and initiatives will need to be concentrated upon.”

These changes are creating what Havers

engagement, meeting functional require-

calls “an uncontrolled network and user

ments and ensuring technical operation.

Do IT departments need compliance managers to ensure they fulfil compliance requirements?

space” that will drive businesses towards

However, compliance issues now need to

Havers says: “In our dealings with Top

starting now on a “two- to three-year

be integrated into the fabric of systems

100 organisations, we are already engag-

exercise to build IT compliance into the

and processes at the design phase and

ing with IT compliance managers. These

fabric of an organisation of reasonable

not as an afterthought.

people sit at a confluence point of IT,

of an increasingly mobile workforce is critical to enterprise success. In addition, effective management of big data is still a challenge for many organisations,”

In the past, when an IT organisation

said Kawalec.

needed to design, develop and deploy a new system, the challenges were around user

risk and business and develop a risk

size and complexity”. “What we are seeing is that where you

management perspective of business is-

One of the issues that was raised by Smith

are processing data, whether that’s cloud

sues, assisting IT with programs of work

was that some compliance issues cross

- private or public, there’s a strategy that’s

to meet solid IT governance practices in

national borders. For example, “A US

required for regulatory compliance. That

line with business and regulatory access

citizen, who is in Australia, has to comply

is resulting in opportunities for data


with some US regulation,” he added.

management, encryption, tokenisation and so on. Those pointers have to be brought

Similarly, Smith is seeing the rise of the

While achieving and maintaining regula-

in much earlier in the life cycle to be

chief data officer as “someone that has

tory compliance can be very challenging,

considered much earlier for any compli-

holistic ownership and governance of

Smith also suggested that it can be a

ance and regulatory related requirements.

an enterprise’s data”.

significant opportunity.

We can clearly see that shift happening,” according to Smith.

this up. “Compliance is everyone’s re-

“A number of our clients are looking at the fact that compliance is really forcing

Big data and the cloud have changed

sponsibility - from background checks

a pervasive approach to change. The

where and how data is stored, and how

during an employment process, through

impact of various regulatory and policy

it is accessed. “Compliance strategies

to compliance of IT infrastructure

and procedure changes means that the

will surely need to evolve to address the

and systems, all the way to regulatory

change is impacting many parts of the

new paradigm in information access and


organisation. Some of more forward-

exchange, particularly in an adjusting

thinking clients are looking at this as

regulatory and legislative environment. For

Kawalec adds to this saying: “A successful

an opportunity to tackle more progres-

several industries, data security and data

strategy should include specific defini-

sive change alongside those compliance

sovereignty - ensuring compliance with

tion of roles and responsibilities within

changes. If they’re addressing a change in

regulators’ demand that data is managed

the IT organisation, including potential

the customer information systems because

and maintained within national bounda-

new roles, to sufficiently address those

of some compliance pressure, what else

ries - is key,” said Kawalec.

challenges. Effective compliance management strategies should also identify

can we do while we’re in there, under the


However, McLagan perhaps best sums

hood? What else can we couple with that

McLagan’s view is: “Big data is a natural

vendor and partner initiatives that can

change for better business outcomes?”

evolution of IT. However, the implication

share the burden of compliance.”


IOS UNIFIED COMMS ShoreTel has released its Mobility 6 and Conferencing iOS applications for free on iTunes. Mobility 6 offers a native iPad user interface for enabling multimodal communications. Users can place and receive calls with their business persona (desk phone caller ID), exchange instant messages, listen to voicemail messages and create multiparty calls by dragging names from enterprise directories together with a swipe of the finger. Conferencing for iOS offers application collaboration capabilities.

Compuware Workbench is a standardised

Users can share presentations controlled by their iPad or iPhone

point-and-click mainframe application

with remote participants, or can view shared desktops of their

development interface.

colleagues’ PC and Macs.

The product features file and data man-

Both applications are available for Apple iPad, iPad mini, iPhone

agement capabilities, including the ability

and iPod touch users, with some functionality limited on smaller

to edit IMS databases. It’s intended to

screens. Mobility 6 voice applications are also available for

help companies ‘future proof’ mainframe

ShoreTel Sky customers, and SIP-supported IP PBXs from Avaya

development by providing an environment

and Cisco Systems.

where new and inexperienced developers

can produce applications. The File-AID Data Editor now supports browsing and editing of IMS databases in addition to DB2 and other mainframe

CommVault has released its Simpana 10 data management software platform.

file systems.

The software allows employees across the enterprise to repurpose data under

The Data Editor now supports the XREF capabilities of File-AID MVS by automating



management and search, access and create information to enable better decision making and collaboration.

the selection and usage of record layouts

The product’s architecture stores all protected data in a virtual repository,

for files with different record types. Xpediter/

called ContentStore, and opens access to simplify the way end users search,

Eclipse now includes ‘Monitor/Reverse’ and

analyse and repurpose data.

‘Step Into, Step Over, and Step Return’.

IntelliSnap snapshot management - formerly called SnapProtect - provides

Users can automatically display compile

automated recovery of applications and virtual servers. It now supports

diagnostics, such as syntax errors and

Microsoft Windows Server 2012 with Hyper-V and includes enhancements

compiler warnings, enabling developers

to its IBM DB2, Lotus Notes, SAP and Oracle integration.

to pinpoint the location of the errant code

It features integration with Microsoft Hyper-V, VMware vSphere 5.1 and

causing an application error.

vCloud Director 5.1.







Robert Waldie, Opengear

A look at the evolution of out-of-band infrastructure management tools and technologies shows their growing impact beyond the data centre in managing today’s highly distributed networks.


ut-of-band management

external bolt-on solution without direct

The first stage of this evolution was

appliances are a staple of

access to the server’s system bus, even

secure console servers, which bolstered

data centre infrastruc-

enterprise-grade KVM over IP switches

terminal server remote access capabilities

ture management.

suffered from poor video quality and

with the security features required by the

mouse sync issues.

modern data centre. This includes enterprise- and military-grade encryption of

They have played roles both as an access concentrator to simplify the management

While modern servers can be specified

management traffic, granular user access

of high-density installs and as an essential

with lights-out management cards that

control and integration with enterprise

remediation tool for troubleshooting and

improve the user experience by serving

authentication systems like Active Direc-

disaster recovery to minimise mean time

virtual KVM directly via a built-in dedi-

tory and RADIUS two-factor.

to repair (MTTR) when systems lose

cated network port, the rapid growth of

in-band network connectivity.

virtualisation has all but relegated KVM

Next was the integration of high-

to the role of bit player in out-of-band

availability and resiliency features such

server management.

as redundant power and ethernet and

Historically, the choice for out-of-band

integrated PSTN or 3G cellular modem.

management was limited to either serial terminal server or KVM over IP

In a virtualised environment, KVM over

This guarantees management availability

(keyboard, video, mouse over internet

IP access to guest virtual machines is

even in the case of complete network

protocol) switch.

served by the hypervisor.


At its most basic, the serial terminal

When there are server availability is-

Finally came the convergence of data

server was a Cisco router repurposed as

sues, out-of-band management is of

centre facilities’ monitoring and manage-

an access server, with additional RS232

the hypervisor itself - more often than

ment capabilities, such as power distribu-

async cards providing bullet-proof re-

not a UNIX-like system (such as Citrix

tion and back-up power infrastructure

mote access to network router and switch

XenServer as used by Amazon EC2 and

and environmental monitoring. Coupled

management consoles, and the serial

Rackspace Cloud) and increasingly

with automatic notification and escala-

TTYs of UNIX and UNIX-like servers.

the Linux native Kernel-based Virtual

tion of infrastructure fault conditions or

Machine - and therefore better suited

environmental thresholds, this enables

KVM over IP was reserved for servers

to command-line management via se-

operators and administrators to respond

running GUI-driven operating systems,

rial console.

to issues that may affect availability before they occur, proactively increasing

chiefly Microsoft Windows, for remote

mean time between failures (MTBF).

point-and-click management when in-

In the meantime, the terminal servers of

band management via Remote Desktop

10 years ago have evolved into today’s

was not responding.

converged data centre infrastructure

While the root of the network is currently

management appliances, providing out-

well served by out-of-band management

As a management technology, KVM

of-band management of network, server

tools, it’s arguably in the branches of

always had its shortcomings. As an

and facilities infrastructure.

increasingly distributed installs where


out-of-band infrastructure management is proving the most valuable.


There are three major trends driving this value proposition.


Firstly is the absolute reliance on always-

MTTR associated with a technician call-

management appliance provides central

up network connectivity. This is best

out to repair a remote network outage,

staff with the ‘virtual remote hands’ to

illustrated by the distributed workforce,

these cutbacks can start to look like a

manage network, ICT and power - and

which now relies on the cloud for day-

false economy.

even building management systems.

management (CRM) and teleconferencing.

To operate effectively in this new environ-

Environmental monitoring such as water

For these sites, the cost of a network out-

ment, central technical staff needs new

leak and door open detection in dis-

age in lost productivity and opportunity

management tools.

tributed network cabinets act as ‘virtual

to-day systems like customer relationship

eyes and ears’ for physical infrastructure

has skyrocketed. This requirement has been met by the development of remote management

with tight budgets forcing businesses to

appliances - essentially a converged

Finally, as copper PSTN lines become

do more with less. Cost-saving initiatives

infrastructure management appliance

increasingly scarce, 3G cellular has proven

like cloud migration and staff reductions

from the data centre in a scaled-down

a critical enabling technology for remote

and centralisation have resulted in limited

form factor.

infrastructure management, serving secure remote access over an independent, high-

or no technical staff at remote sites. Once



Secondly is the current economic climate,

you add the costs of fuel, labour and

The convergence of infrastructure manage-

speed network when the primary network

downtime factored with the prolonged

ment technologies means a single remote

link is down.

Save it.

End-to-End Data Protection Barracuda Backup Service is a fully integrated hardware, software and cloud solution that protects applications and servers in physical and virtual environments.

No per server, application or feature fees, combined with data de-duplication and disaster recovery, make this simple backup solution hard to replicate.


Learn More or Try Free:

Singapore Budget 2013 targets quality growth Building on its productivity gains to a level of about 70% of global productivity leaders the US, Japan, Switzerland and Sweden, Singapore has unveiled a S$5.9 billion (US$4.8 billion) Quality Growth Programme in its fiscal year 2013 Budget to fuel growth by sustained productivity improvement rather than manpower growth. “We must ... upgrade technologies, skills and expertise across our economy in this decade, so that we can be a truly advanced economy,” says Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam in his Budget Statement. “The 2% to 3% per annum target for productivity growth that we had set after the weak decade until 2009 is ambitious but we must make every effort to achieve it. That will bring us, at the end of this decade, much closer to where the most advanced economies are today.” That means helping businesses to upgrade, create better jobs and raise wages. That also means restructuring sectors such as the construction, marine and process industries as well as some service industries, which account for the lag in produc-


tivity in Singapore’s overall economy. One of the key pillars of the Quality Growth Programme is a 3-year Transition Support

Investment in mobility will grow from 17% three years ago to 31%

Package to help companies during this period of restructuring.

two years from now (82% growth); cloud will more than double

The package consists of three key components - a S$3.6 billion

from 12% to 30% (150% growth); and collaboration tools will

Wage Credit Scheme (WCS); S$450 million in Productivity and

increase from 18% to 26% (44% growth).

Innovation Credit (PIC) Bonus; and S$1.3 billion in corporate income tax rebates.

However, investing in new technologies alone isn’t enough to guarantee improved competitiveness, the report added. Some

Read full article by Khoo Boo Leong at content/singapore-budget-2013-targets-quality-growth

INSEAD-AT&T, Gartner on wise IT investment decisions

high investors in technology are seeing no improvement in their competitiveness at all and perform the same as companies with low or no investment. The most critical factor in making technology investments succeed

High investors in new technologies such as cloud services, mo-

is to have other strong business resources in place, said Theodoros

bility and online collaboration can double their likelihood of

Evgeniou, associate professor of Decision Sciences and Technology

being highly competitive - from 35% to 74% - and outperform

Management at INSEAD and academic director of INSEAD eLab.

their peers, according to research from the INSEAD business school and AT&T. The INSEAD-AT&T research findings, based on responses from senior executives in 225 multinational companies across Europe, Asia-Pacific and North America, show that in Asia-Pacific, firms


Read full article by Khoo Boo Leong at content/insead-att-gartner-wise-it-investment-decisions

Can old IT security skills be reskilled for cloud management?

are investing a much greater percentage of their total ICT budgets

Global info-security professional body (ISC)2 on Monday released

in new technology and expect to grow those investments more

the results of its sixth Global Information Security Workforce Study

quickly than other regions.

(GISWS) and revealed a global shortage of info-security profes-

W W W. A S I A C L O U D F O R U M . C O M

© Mette

The Asia Cloud Forum, an online media portal, has been created to represent the interests of enterprise users, governments, telcos, vendors, policy makers and others with a stake in the development of cloud computing in Asia.

sionals, with 56% of the respondents feeling their security shops being short-staffed.

O4BO: Why we switched from AWS to IBM?

Concerning cloud computing-related skills, John Ellis, enterprise

Open 4 Business Online (O4BO), a Hong Kong-based solutions

security director of Akamai Technologies, said that there is a

provider, said recently it has partnered with the “right infrastruc-

cloud-aspect to most of the IT skills, and the core skills required

ture provider” to deliver its open source cloud-based applications

yesterday do not differ much from the skills required for a cloud

in the region.

professional today. At a media briefing held in Hong Kong, O4BO’s founder Mike He said: “I think there is a cloud-aspect to most of the skills you

Oliver explained how the company leveraged cloud computing in

are looking for. People who have an understanding, code develop-

its cloud services delivery, and the key reasons why it switched from

ers understanding how to develop codes, co-hosted multitenanted

the initial cloud service provider Amazon Web Services to IBM,

environment, a code that can be run on a virtualised environment,

by using IBM’s infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) cloud platform

scale out, scale horizontally, scale upward - that in itself requires

SmartCloud Enterprise.

a level of awareness. All the way down to understanding how to architect an environment that is actually multitenant where you

Through partnering with Corent Technology, O4BO primarily

can have logical separation of policies.

provides cloud-based open source applications (SaaS). The six key SaaS it provides are web content management, ERP, CRM,

“A lot of us have bought into the hype a bit too much. I think

business intelligence and analytics, online storage, and enterprise

it’s more of an understanding about some of the aspects around

service bus. A distinctive approach of O4BO is its integration of

virtualisation and multitenancy. But there is nothing really revolu-

all six SaaS into a single subscription service to enable data sharing

tionary about the skills.

across the applications.

Read full article by Carol Ko at can-old-it-security-skills-be-reskilled-cloud-management

Read full article by Carol Ko at o4bo-why-we-switched-aws-ibm

W W W. A S I A C L O U D F O R U M . C O M



BUSINESS CONTINUITY RSA has introduced two additions to the Archer product suite. Archer Business Continuity Management and Operations is designed to address business continuity, disaster recovery and crisis management, and is engineered to align with BS25999, NIMS and ISO 22301. Deeper integration with other GRC processes such as enterprise risk management, incident management and third-party management helps allow companies to align recovery efforts with organisational objectives and priorities for enhanced visibility,

The Centrify Suite 2013 security and compliance solution features privileged user management and auditing for Windows systems as well as sudo migration tools for Linux systems. The product helps organisations meet compliance requirements and reduce risks from internal threats. The suite manages the task of linking access privileges and actions to named users in heterogeneous IT

accountability and reporting. The Archer BCM Mobile App is designed to augment hard copy plans and enable rapid response during a crisis situation by offering visibility into business continuity or disaster recovery plans and associated strategies, tasks, calling trees and requirements from most locations. In the event that a data centre is not available, the app is intended to provide high availability, allowing the end user offline access to resources from the time the app was last synced.

environments that include Windows, UNIX and Linux, and it leverages existing Active Directory infrastructure. The suite includes DirectAuthorize for Windows, which helps with the problem of too many users having broad and unmanaged administrative powers by securely delegating privileged access and enforcing who can

The new version of SAS Visual Analytics visual data exploration software includes added graphical display options and analytical capabilities. The in-memory solution allows users to examine data, execute analytic calculations on billions of rows

perform defined administrative functions.

of data and present results visually.

The product enables centralised UNIX/

With self-service, executives have access - via PCs or tablets - to reports or

Linux authorisation with sudo migration



mobile dashboards that are based on the latest data. This can also free IT

and sudo replacement features. Import

departments from information requests from business users.

wizards automate the retrieval and import

The product offers graphical and analytics features, including forecasting,

of sudoers’ files for centralised enforcement

multiple-regress model options, interaction between multiple visuals and

via the suite.

dynamic filtering.




Senator Kate Lundy, Federal Minister

Gartner Business Process Management Summit 2013 is a premier meeting place

Assisting for Industry and Innovation,

for IT and business executives and professionals who are responsible for imple-

will present the 2013 Consensus

menting, managing or maintaining business process management (BPM). Learn

Innovation Awards on the evening

more about technologies that enable business agility; gather best practices on

of Tuesday 30 April in Sydney. The

the art of process control; become more efficient, consistent and competitive.

awards identify the most innovative

Agenda highlights include: making BPM part of the strategic plan; how BPM

solutions across all industry sectors including manufacturing, engineering, electronics, health, retail, distribution, education, telecoms, energy, mining and digital media in Australia and

can enable transformational change; the convergence of cloud, mobile, social and information with BPM; how to establish process ownership and effective governance; and process intelligence and the role of iBPMS.

New Zealand. They also identify new processes and innovations in R&D. Award recognition can be vital in building the credibility and exposure necessary for locally developed technology to break into new markets.


The Consensus Innovation Awards

For the twelfth year running, CeBIT Australia returns to the Sydney Convention

have been developed to provide

& Exhibition Centre from 28–30 May 2013 as the number one business

this credibility by using an open and

technology event of the Australian business calendar.

transparent judging process based on

The CeBIT Exhibition brings together a diverse range of industries on a

the consensus model. Any number of

single platform, covering the entire spectrum of business technology solu-

awards may be conferred by the large

tions for industry and government, from critical processes such as business

independent judging panel. They are

intelligence, cyber security and enterprise resource planning software, to the

supported by NZ Trade & Enterprise,

latest Web 3.0 developments, unified communication, cloud, big data and

Australian Consensus Technology

emerging technologies.

Association and Wholesale Investor. Baxter IP is a sponsor.

The CeBIT Global Conferences line-up focuses on the latest innovations, business solutions and technology insights from the private and public sectors. The 2013 conference themes include cybersecurity, supply chain & logistics, financial technology, cloud computing, enterprise mobility and business intelligence & big data.


For the latest news and updates, follow @CeBITAUS on Twitter.




s business cycles get crunched

book of the same name. When a system

level of risk and volume of transactions in

and we’re more connected

reaches the point of overconnectedness it

the system. When problems arose the con-

with our stakeholders, busi-

becomes unpredictable, prone to accidents

tagion spread very quickly. Unfortunately,

nesses need to adapt to a world

and contagion, and situations can rapidly

this is not an isolated example; the Arab

where decisions can have far-reaching and

escalate to extremes. Research by British

Spring, the Asian currency crisis, the dot.

unexpected effects.

cyberneticist W Ross Ashby concludes

com bubble are also examples.

large complex dynamic systems appear to Do you ever feel as though everything

be stable until they reach a point of “con-

The increasing level of interconnectedness

happens much faster today? The pace of

nectance”; exceed this point and the system

points to more instability in the future not

change seems relentless, everything is more

suddenly becomes unstable. Unfortunately,

less. How can you better prepare your or-

complex, with more stakeholders for every

exceeding this point is not readily apparent

ganisation? Understanding systems dynam-

decision. While there is much debate about

and instability can happen very quickly.

ics is a useful starting place. Understanding

the actual rate of change (is it faster now

how systems vary in terms of maturity,

or at other points in history) there is broad

Referring to organisations as “too big to

stability, and the impact positive feedback

consensus the world has become more

fail” is a simplification of these concepts

loops can have on instability is helpful.

complex and interconnected.

and illustrates the risks to the overall system when it becomes too complex. The more

Systems dynamics can be a powerful

A definition of a complex system is one

interconnected the system, the harder full

tool to identify leverage points, warning

with many interdependencies. (As this is a

visibility of the system becomes, making the

indicators and external vulnerabilities. It

technology magazine, it’s worth clarifying,

risks more difficult to identify or quantify.

is useful in understanding industry growth

the word systems is used in its broader

Instability and unpredictability in the system

and decline, organisational performance

sense encompassing more than technology.)

are harder to assess and mitigate or avoid.

and maturity. Critically examining and

Society has used technology as an enabler

Unintended consequences happen more

mapping your organisation’s internal

to create a complex web of interdependent

frequently, faster and with greater impact.

and external systems can identify oppor-


tunities to build resilience or implement

complex systems reach a point where too

One example is the impact of US mortgage

redundancy measures, leaving you better

many interdependencies create instability.

debt on the entire global financial system.

prepared when external shocks occur. This

Through a complex web of interdependen-

is true for IT and the entire business.

William Davidow, veteran of Silicon Val-

cies, risk from mortgage debt was spread

While not slowing the pace of change,

ley and engineer by training, refers to

globally throughout the world’s financial

better understanding complexity can help

this as “overconnectedness” in his recent

system, with little overall visibility of the

to mitigate the impacts.

© Rich

and interconnected relationships. However,

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