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Crossbeam Survey

New survey results from Crossbeam identify network security as the number one reason IT organisations are stalled in their efforts to transition to cost- and energy-efficient Next Generation Data Centres (NGDCs). The survey polled 529 IT professionals within large global enterprises and service provider organisations to understand how far along they are in transitioning traditional data centres to the NGDC model. NGDCs are an evolution of the data centre in which virtualisation and other technologies are deployed to create an environment that is more dynamic, efficient and flexible, allowing organisations to easily scale and respond to changing business requirements. However, according to survey findings, among the three main technology areas of the data centre - application servers, storage infrastructure and network security - network security has not only become the greatest obstacle to the NGDC evolution, it is bringing many NGDC efforts to a halt.

According to the findings:

* 94 per cent of respondents cite network security as the top reason why NGDC deployments are stalled, with virtually no progress anticipated in the next 12-18 months.

* More than 40 per cent of respondents say that network security is the biggest obstacle to the successful deployment of NGDCs. This is compared to storage and application servers, which received merely 15 per cent and 14 per cent of the responses respectively.

The survey research note explains a key driver behind this problem is that network security technology remains mired in a "last generation data centre" approach, due largely to a lack of understanding of how to virtualise network security infrastructure as well as budgetary constraints.

"Organisations need to adopt a virtualisation strategy that enables network security infrastructure to be as dynamic as the rest of the environment, or they will wind up with many of the same cost and complexity problems that plague traditional data centres" said Micheiie Bailey, research vice president for IDC's Enterprise Platforms and Datacentre Trends. "While virtualising network security is still a relatively new concept, it is clear that IT organisations need to be making investments in the right expertise and technologies if they want to avoid repeating the security mistakes of the past."

"For all the documented efficiencies and green benefits of the NGDC, virtualised environments are much more fluid by nature, which opens the potential...

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