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June 21, 2012

Happy Days and the Rise of DCIM

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, TMC

INTERNET TELEPHONY’s June issue includes an article by Brian Farrar, founder and partner of strategic consulting firm Maven Wave Partners. In it, he writes that the world of IT has “finally recorded several successive quarters of growth since the financial crisis of 2008 ended in the fourth quarter of 2010.”

He goes on to add that, “Dozens of analyses completed over the last few months, not to mention the latest fourth quarter 2011 update to the Maven Wave Partners study on corporate spending on hardware, software, and the IT workforce, confirm that we’re on a growth track.” In his piece, which bears the headline Happy Days Are Here Again, he adds, “The forecast is very rosy indeed, and much of that can be attributed to the cloud.”

IT spending in the fourth quarter of 2011 maintained its strength (despite Maven Wave’s initial expectations that it would not), remaining essentially flat from the previous quarter, but outpacing the firm’s forecast by roughly 3.8 percent.

“The MIT rose to 142.7 in the fourth quarter of 2011, meeting our forecast for the end of 2012 exactly one full year early,” Farrar writes.

As a result, the firm has revised upward its forecast for 2012 from 142.6 to 154.7 – an increase of more than eight percent.

“The revised positive projection syncs with our recent experience and conversations with clients, competitors and vendors in the market,” he says.

Speaking of the cloud, last week I attended Cisco (News - Alert) Live in San Diego. One of the terms I heard again and again was DCIM.

Research and markets describes data center infrastructure management as “the integration of IT and facilities management to enable seamless monitoring of all systems across IT and facility infrastructures to improve the data center energy efficiency.”

Emerson (News - Alert) Network Power’s Steve Blakemore, who I met with at Cisco Live, explained that as data centers become more complex and flexible because of virtualization, it is becoming more of a challenge to manage what used to be a static environment.

That’s why Emerson and others like Mirapath and Opengear are offering solutions to help businesses that use data centers to understand and manage the capacity and energy requirements of their applications. Blakemore and others also noted that this kind of thing blurs the line between facilities operations managers and IT folks.

 “We’re seeing this melding of OT and IT,” Bob Waldie, chairman of Opengear (News - Alert), told me.

iTRACS Corporation says that, “This kind of DCIM is going to be in demand moving forward, as it is specifically engineered to handle large, complex infrastructure environments.”

Gartner (News - Alert) predicts DCIM will quickly become mainstream, growing from one percent penetration of data centers in 2010 to 60 percent in 2014.

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Edited by Brooke Neuman
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