Get Ready for the Cloud and Its Data Management Issues

The attack of the “Special Advertising Section” is upon us. Cloud data management is being highlighted in many magazines these days as articles on cloud computing proliferate. When I recently picked up several financial- and business-related magazines at the airport, I was bombarded by Special Advertising Sections masquerading as cloud computing articles. Reading these special sections is reminiscent of perusing client-server articles where every sentence stretches a new marketing cloud solution. Given that management is usually by magazine I suspect that the cloud will be in the future for all of us faster than we think or desire.

These special sections are propagating several common myths that come with every new management-by-magazine movement. The new cloud trend will reduce infrastructure costs, development costs and speed time to market. These same false statements were said about client server, UNIX distributed systems and internet applications. These trends did many great things for IT but in many cases turned up costing more. The overall cost increases of these past trends have been shown over the years with cost studies and the current Windows and UNIX consolidation trend. True, pure plays within the cloud may reduce costs, but as with the other new trends over the past these new trend implementations usually increased costs.

Cloud computing will not help the data quality issues I discussed last week because it will introduce another latency and disparate system into the corporate infrastructure. The cloud is being portrayed as a standard integration layer for the business without any consideration of cloud data strategy.

Introducing cloud computing means we must replicate cloud data from our DB2 environments or must connect the cloud up to our mission critical applications to access data for the cloud. When you implement cloud computing, make sure to document the amount of cloud data being replicated. Since you’ll need to consider disaster recovery and replicate, recover and manage multiple copies of the data and the CPU with the cloud, you’ll need to discuss these new business costs. These costs aren’t talked about in any of these special articles, but they must be documented and fully realized by management. Including another system always brings transaction integrity and performance overhead issues and cloud data will be the latest weakest link. Make sure to set up real monitoring within any new cloud interface to document transaction integrity issues and its overall impact on performance.

Make sure to read these new special advertising sections on cloud computing. They are really good for understanding the pressure your CIO is under to adopt these techniques and the comedy isn’t bad either. In the first paragraphs of these articles you will definitely read the hype, about how everyone is going to the cloud, it provides greater efficiency, cost effectiveness and agility. Just remember to document your cloud data travels, your new staff costs, new hardware costs and the impact on your transaction performance. So when asked about your DB2 cloud data strategy, tell you management you’re looking forward to extending and embracing the technology through more documentation and performance analysis. It will be interesting.

If you are or someone at your company is attending the database training at Information on Demand (IOD)-EU Conference in Montpellier, France July 6-9, I will be giving my “Database Performance Discoveries and Recommendations” presentation and possibly “Java DB2 Developer Performance Best Practices Part 2” presentation. Stop by and let me know any blog topics you’re interested in reading.

Also remember the IDUG EU conference in Prague, this November. Sign up now at

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