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Traditional systems management technologies are being replaced with a higher-level management capability that spans cloud computing, virtualization, and physical devices. This report looks at the fundamentals of managing this new IT reality, and has been updated for 2015 to include containers, SDDC, and mobile.


  • The role and purpose of IT in an organization is undergoing significant change, driven by the need for businesses to become more agile and have greater control over cost levers when it comes to using technology.

Features and Benefits

  • Learn why SDDC requires the processes used in IT operations to be reviewed and refined.
  • Understand how the management of services differs from the management of system resources.

Key questions answered

  • What are the next steps in the adoption of cloud computing?
  • What transformation is required to deliver a change in how IT is managed, delivered, and consumed?

Table of contents


  • Catalyst
  • Ovum view
  • Key messages


  • Recommendations for enterprises
  • Recommendations for vendors

Virtualization and cloud technologies remain proprietary, which complicates any management solutions

  • Interoperability between different vendors’ hypervisor and cloud technologies complicates workload management
  • Containers are now beginning to require a fresh look at workloads and the technology on which they execute
  • Adopting new capacity planning and workload management models for highly virtualized and cloud environments

Management processes in virtual and cloud environments require a greater degree of flexibility

  • Storage requirements must accommodate the demand for increased performance and availability in virtual and cloud environments
  • VM sprawl is reducing the benefits obtained from implementing virtualized environments
  • Performance monitoring and management in a virtualized environment includes more variables to take into account
  • Management is the final piece of the jigsaw on SDDC
  • IT must adapt its approach to allocation of duties as software-defined technologies blur the current demarcation lines

End-user computing is creating new challenges as devices may be mobile but apps and data are centrally managed

  • Limitations with deploying desktop virtualization have now been eliminated
  • Client-side virtualization requires new approaches in the data center
  • The role of management is to mitigate the risks to the organization of an ever increasing mobile workforce

Increasingly an application-centric perspective is required at the management layer

  • Internal delivery of applications is the dominant approach, but organizations are shifting to SaaS and hybrid cloud
  • A basic understanding of the different approaches used by the application virtualization vendors is required

The move to hybrid cloud requires holistic management tools

  • Understanding the cost and value of service delivery is rapidly becoming a must-have capability in a management tool
  • Managing the shift from IT push to business pull requires a new approach to management
  • Business-as-a-service is the logical next evolution for cloud


  • Further reading
  • Author

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