I am not the only person to predict that the cloud will take over most of what we experience as “Internet” and “Networks” (for consumers this is already the case). Of course admins that manage a local area network with switches, copper cables, and one or more data rooms know, that a good part of their work and hardware will not go to the cloud anytime soon. So we will all have to live with a mixture of public and private cloud: The hybrid cloud.
There are no sacred cows to someone who believes that consumer devices and self-service IT are the keystones of the new business office world. One of these cows is wired Ethernet in the workplace. It will largely go away soon!
Here is an extreme example: Last August Microsoft announced that they are ditching copper-based Ethernet in 660 campuses in favor of WiFi-only offices over the next 24 months.
“Our users don’t simply use a workstation at a desk to do their jobs anymore. They’re using their phone, their tablet, their laptop and their desktop computer, if they have one,” said Lef in a Q&A published in the Microsoft Azure Blog. “It’s evolved into a devices ecosystem rather than a single productivity device, and most of those devices support wireless. In fact, most of them support only wireless.”
David Lef, principal network architect at Microsoft IT.
Comparing the terminologies of PRTG, WhatsUp, OpManager and SAM
Almost 20 years ago when I started my monitoring software company and wrote the first monitoring code (for “IPCheck” as it was called back then) I decided to use the word “sensor” as the name for the most basic monitoring item and the “probe” would be thing that gathered the data.
At about the same time people at Ipswitch, Solarwinds and ManageEngine had to make similar decisions, but they made different naming decisions that differenciate us to this day.
The mission of our company is to build products and services to help system administrators reach 100% uptime for their networks. We all know that it becomes harder and harder to reach 100% the closer you come to your goal, it’s like trying to reach the speed of light.
One of the limitations that system administrators can’t do much about is the reliability (or failure rate) of the electrical power grids they have to rely on. In a data center it is pretty easy to get around this problem by installing uninterruptible power supplies (ups): using a generator you can run a data center off-the-grid for days.
But what about the on-site networks that you serve with that data-center, the people in the offices and factory buildings. Your ups won’t help. When the power grid fails, your computer-using colleagues will twiddle their thumbs until power is coming back again.
The better you do your job, the bigger your problems in the next budget discussion will become! Let’s assume you did a perfect job in the last few months and you have achieved 100% uptime for your network (well, at least your colleagues and your boss didn’t notice any downtimes). Why would anybody agree with you that you need more budget for next year?
I call this the “Sysadmin’s Dilemma”: The better you are doing your job, the harder it is to explain to others why you still need to invest resources into IT in the future to keep your service level up. Of course you cannot willingly degrade your uptime so that the people in your company realize again how important the IT team is in order to get noticed again – a true dilemma.
Many system admins and network admins like to wear t-shirts. Here are some that I liked the most: