Four Factors to Consider Before Taking Big Data to the Cloud

October 26, 2016
By Brandy Smith


Big data is rapidly evolving from proof-of-concept to production. While the terms big data and cloud were previously taboo, many businesses are looking to big data as a source of customer insight and a way to bolster operational efficiencies. The cloud is becoming a viable option as many IT managers are faced with the challenges of finding ways to collect, store, manage, and analyze large amounts of data collected from thousands of sources.

As big data production applications migrate toward becoming the norm across organizations, it is being increasingly applied to enterprise-wide, mission-critical operations. Big data has become too massive to keep on a single proprietary system. As such, the demands for integration are increasing exponentially. The current task at hand for many IT decision makers is to create a plan for taking their businesses data to the cloud, and how it will be used after it is there. But once that is complete, the monumental task of building out a long-term strategy for their data to succeed in real-world corporate IT settings awaits.

The Big Data Model

Big data activity can be aggressive. Often this means that the issue of data collection is way ahead of storage and utilization capabilities. When...

Read on...

Let's Talk Storage

October 20, 2016
By Pete Peterson

storage.png Reading Time: about 4 minutes

At CenturyLink we love all things storage. We strive to incorporate new technologies into our platform to provide best-in-class service and unmatched performance. As the flash memory market undergoes radical changes we are excited to offer customers a portfolio of storage options.

What is Storage?

The question "What qualifies as storage?" needs to be asked because the line between what can and can not be considered storage has become blurred. Many do not consider RAM to be storage due to its lack of crash consistency, but it has the most lanes to the processor; each of the lanes directly translates into improved application performance. With the emergence of 3d-NAND flash and nano-second respond latency, we can now move to primary storage into the memory bus. This change provides 48GB/s throughput to the caching drive as compared to the 2.8 GB/s on the PCI bus. A memory bus type caching drives can scale-write IOPS in excess of 100M1. To put this into context, this translates to the storage requirements of 1,500 large enterprise exchange servers2 or 1000 SAP HANNA instances3. This type of disruptive technology changes what primary storage means.

How do we Define Performance?

When we designed our software defined...

Read on...

Tips for a Successful Security Strategy

October 19, 2016
By Brandy Smith

secure cloud

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month (NCSAM), an annual campaign sponsored by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA). The overall goal, according to the Department of Homeland Security, which participates in NCSAM, is to “increase the resiliency of the Nation in the event of a cyber incident.”

Security threats are vast and constantly evolving, as should your businesses security strategy.

Today, security isn’t just about basic protection. Companies have far more to consider than they once did. Now, a security strategy is a holistic approach to protection, prevention, detection and response—and it needs to encompass all aspects of an adaptive security architecture.

Top Business Security Threats

Here’s an overview of what you need to consider when implementing, updating, and enforcing your security strategy.

External Threats

According to Cisco's Annual Security report, 100% of multinational companies show evidence that suspicious traffic was emanating from their networks and attempting to connect to questionable sites.

The speed at which external threats are increasing is exponential. There are millions of malware variations that enterprises must defend against, but it’s difficult for signature-based malware to keep up. There are more distributed denial-of-services (DDoS) attacks than ever before, and they vary widely; they can be highly targeted or generic, long...

Read on...

Spin Up a Cloud Relational Database in Minutes

October 10, 2016
By Daniel Morton

Relational DB Logo

Reading Time: about 4 minutes

CenturyLink demonstrates its commitment to provide automation and productivity on our Hybrid IT Services Platform, which makes it easy for you to manage and control your virtualized application and network resources.

Relational DB is a MySQL-compatible Database-as-a-Service (RDBaaS) designed to meet the needs of the developer for rapid software development while providing accelerated IT on-demand. For example, you can easily provision database environments without incurring any of the usual costs related to dedicated hardware and licensing. Developers can spin up high-performing, dynamic MySQL-compatible databases instantly to support their software delivery needs while minimizing infrastructure costs and reducing the time required to manage.

Deployment Options

Companies look for an advantage in the marketplace while also looking to control costs. There are basically two database deployment options facing many enterprises both large or small. In either case, the option begins with defining your need. The decision is determining which of the two makes the most sense for your business.

Traditional Self-Service Relational DB
Staff the required database administrators Define the budget
Procure or rent the hardware Consume services on an as-needed basis
Define infrastructure requirements Scale up or down as necessary
Define maintenance and downtime process
Manage security
Implement load balancing
Set up backup, failover, and failback procedures
Database application installation, configuration, automation, tuning,

Read on...

Increase Security Not Complexity

October 5, 2016
By Matt Pley


Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how they leverage our platform to enable customer success. This week’s guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Matt Pley, VP Carrier & Service Provider Group, at Fortinet.

Cloud computing is becoming increasingly popular among enterprises looking to take advantage of quick deployment, unprecedented scalability, and cost savings. Both public cloud adoption and private cloud infrastructure, including virtualization and software-defined networking (SDN), are rapidly transforming data centers worldwide. Evolving your infrastructure means your security must evolve as well. If your security can’t keep up with the agile public, private, and hybrid cloud environments of today, gaps in protection will occur. The Fortinet Security Fabric has integrated next-generation firewall (NGFW) technology with the CenturyLink Cloud platform to help businesses achieve end-to-end security without the complexity.

End-to-end Next Adaptive Security Protection

The award winning Fortinet Security Fabric network security solutions provide end-to-end security across the entire network. FortiGate enterprise firewalls are optimized for internal segmentation, perimeter, cloud, data center, distributed, and small business deployments. Organizations can simplify their security posture with one security solution across your physical, virtual, and cloud deployments.

Organizations can choose individual...

Read on...

Beefing Up Bare Metal

October 3, 2016
By Joe Nguyen

Servers in the cloud

In an effort to better meet our customers' needs and the ever changing market, we beefed up the feature set and availability for our Bare Metal servers on the CenturyLink Cloud®. At CenturyLink we continue to build a customer driven cloud, powered by feedback from the front lines of our business---the user. And while Bare Metal servers in the CenturyLink Cloud have always delivered the best of both worlds: the computing power of a physical server, plus the automation and pay-as-you-go flexibility of virtual machines; these new enhancements provide our customers with more options regarding where and how they can build their Bare Metal instances.

New Data Center Availability

Previously, customers could build their Bare Metal servers in either our Sterling, VA or Slough, United Kingdom data centers. We added three new data center locations to the line-up: New York, Vancouver, and coming soon, Sydney. The addition of these new locations gives our customers more options on a global scale.

New Server Configurations

New configurations are designed to allow the Bare Metal servers to support more intensive compute workloads. These modifications mean more cores, more memory, SSDs, and more local storage with configurable RAID control options.

Server matrix

For detailed information about the full set-up updates,...

Read on...

Four Factors Fueling CenturyLink Cloud Growth in Europe

September 26, 2016
By Steve Falkus

cloud growth

Public cloud has been a part of global businesses for many years now, but there seems to be no stopping the growth of demand for innovative cloud services in Europe. The latest market forecast figures from IDC for Public Cloud Services in Western Europe suggests that the market is growing at more than 20% each year and will be worth almost $40 Billion by 2020. CenturyLink has experienced cloud growth in the European market as well. So, what is fueling the growth of public cloud in general, and CenturyLink Cloud®, in particular?

Hybrid IT Solutions

Enterprises continue to shift their on-premise data center assets into the cloud in pursuit of business agility, while moving to an Opex commercial model that scales IT costs in line with business growth. With virtually every industry being disrupted by digital innovators, established enterprises are moving applications quickly to the cloud as they accelerate their own digital business strategy.

CenturyLink has provided hosting solutions in Europe since 2002. With a focus on specific verticals including financial services, retail, legal, media, and technology, many of our clients have been with us for a number of years. Many clients started their hosting journey using Colocation and Managed Hosting services, then...

Read on...

The Cost of Migrating an Enterprise Application

September 12, 2016
By Jonathan Townsend


Migration from a dedicated legacy platform to the cloud is a multi-step process that highlights all the applicable, real-life considerations in real-time. Specifically, ensuring that the customer’s availability requirements are met throughout the process and any configuration changes that are necessary to ensure the workload is optimized for the new platform are made. Although migration itself can be a complex exercise, it does not have to be overly-complicated, and it's not something customers have to feel they're all alone in doing. In reference to Forrester's Cloud App Migration Cost Model brief, questions like, “We’ve got a cloud-first strategy; now, how much will it cost to move our core applications to a public cloud?” lead to more inquiries about how a migration will impact the things that affect business the most — enterprise applications.

Defining Enterprise Apps

Enterprise applications are developed and deployed with the following elements in mind: complexity, scalability, distribution viability, component-based architecture versus service-oriented architecture (SOA), mission-critical functionality, and deployment capability on a variety of platforms across corporate networks, intranets, and the Internet. Enterprise applications are data-centric while remaining user-friendly and oftentimes, have to fall into compliance with stringent security, administration, and maintenance requirements.

A major component of the cloud migration...

Read on...

Obstacles to Better Broadband in Rural Communities

August 30, 2016
By Jessica Weber


It's easy to lose perspective when you're working with and using technology. Something that seems so simple and fast, like transferring a file, requires a lot of "behind-the-scenes" work to happen. There's the physical limitations -- does the network even reach my location? -- and there's also resource limitations -- is there enough staff or money to make file transfers in this area a reality?

In a world where the Internet of Things (IOT) is becoming a common commodity and people in urban areas expect fast transfer speeds and instant data access, there are those outside the urban bubble, mainly rural communities, that still face a number of challenges to making fast and reliable data transfer a reality.

There are many reasons that these rural communities need faster and more reliable broadband connections. The infrastructure of a community relies heavily on the speedy communication between staff. Whether it be to put out a fire or respond to an emergency situation, people need to communicate quickly and efficiently. This is especially important in the realm of health care. Rural communities have a difficult time upgrading the technologies that would grant them faster access to health care specialists, who are most likely located in...

Read on...

Your Applications on Any Cloud, Across Many Clouds

August 16, 2016
By Ross Gray


Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how they leverage our platform to enable customer success. This week’s guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Ross Gray, VP at Cloudsoft

Cloudsoft Application Management Platform (AMP) is software which streamlines the development and operation of applications. AMP orchestrates services, platforms, and infrastructures to ensure they directly meet the needs of applications, dynamically and in real time. This results in more reliable operations, productive development, and greater agility for IT to respond to their business needs. Now, Cloudsoft AMP is available on the CenturyLink Cloud Platform via Blueprint. CenturyLink Cloud works with Cloudsoft to provide agility and reliability throughout the application lifecycle, and provide users with the ability to build applications across any cloud, or across many clouds.

Behind the Cloud AMP Technology

AMP is built on a foundation of Apache Brooklyn, Clocker, Apache jclouds and other open source technologies. AMP collects and packages the open source projects Apache Brooklyn and Clocker. AMP’s autonomic policy-based management transforms cloud operations and liberates applications from infrastructure, allowing you to mix-and-match bare metal, virtual machines and containers.

Cloud AMP utilizes autonomic computing, a framework which...

Read on...

Data Protection in the Cloud

August 9, 2016
By Alexander Negrash

cloudberry logo new

Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how they leverage our platform to enable customer success. This week’s guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Alexander Negrash, Director of Marketing , at CloudBerry Lab.

The evolution of cloud technology saw cloud storage as a great tool to offload on-premise storage economics into the cloud. Thanks to ever-increasing Internet bandwidth and declining storage prices, keeping backups in the cloud has become a viable alternative to traditional on-site data storage for small and medium sized businesses.

However, many companies often overlook key considerations when it comes to online backup:

Reliable Storage

When moving backup data off-site, a company should ensure the cloud storage service is reliable and cost-effective, yet high-performing.

Data Security

Security is a top concern when business data is taken to the cloud. A company's private data could be compromised if the solution lacks the right features.

Restore Capabilities

Backup data stored at a remote facility should always be set at a recoverable state, be accessible at any time, and allow point-in-time object-level restore.

Companies migrate to cloud platforms like CenturyLink Cloud, leaving behind their own IT-infrastructures with costly hardware and labor-intensive maintenance....

Read on...


    Follow us on

Start Your Free Trial

High performance, fast deployment times and intuitive management capabilities that will push your business forward

*We will send a SMS message to verify your account, standard rates apply.