With the cloud, business has more deployment options than ever before. Public cloud projects are on an upswing, but that doesn’t mean all data belongs in an external cloud. For many companies, especially those in financial services, the arguments for maintaining a private cloud – for reasons of reliability, security, and control – still resonate deeply.
But, even with the advanced architecture of a private cloud, companies still face a fundamental issue: reducing the amount of manual work necessary for network setup and configuration, especially when dealing with IP address conflicts.
Morningstar, Inc., a leading global provider of investment management and research services, set up a private cloud, but still faced the challenge of how to accelerate access through automation. In its legacy environment, its IT team coped with too many manual processes.
“We were doing everything manually when it came to creating DNS entries,” says Andrew Watts, Morningstar’s director of IT. “We were using a spreadsheet and working out what IP addresses were available and then, even with the spreadsheet data, still having conflicts. We needed to leapfrog this and other legacy processes.” It seemed silly to move forward with a new private cloud and still be stuck with old issues.
Morningstar tried IP address management (IPAM) from a vendor that didn’t specialize in core network services, but soon learned the solution wasn’t as advanced as what the company could get with Infoblox. Once Morningstar made the commitment to Infoblox, it took only two weeks to get IPAM in production. “Infoblox IPAM was the most painless process in getting our private cloud up and running and continues to be so,” Watts says. “We haven’t had any issues.”
That was a year ago, and since then Morningstar has deployed a number of mobile applications. “Infoblox gives us point-and-click deployment, whereas before we had to build the infrastructure by hand, create the wiring, and set up the IP addresses manually,” says Watts. “The time involved has shrunk from a couple of months to a couple of days. The thing I like about Infoblox is that I haven’t had to think about it. I’ve spent a lot more time thinking about what we want to do with our private cloud as a whole. To me, that’s the ROI.”
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