Tuesday, October 13, 2015

EMC + Dell is not quite the same as E=MC (squared)

Lots of questions on the value for Dell to purchase EMC, which has been covered ad-nauseum in the trade journals. Harvard Business Review published an analysis by Benjamin Gomes-Casseres which is beautiful in simplicity:

Still, the Dell strategy is opaque. In fact, Dell has argued that being private facilitates its transition, as too much public scrutiny might derail its plans. In that regard, selling to a private company is like going into a black hole. Analysts are guessing at what the strategy might be, and so far are not coming up with clear winner.
Benjamin looks to the examples of IBM/Lotus and Compaq/DEC as possible models, which is an interesting filter. For me, it's refreshing to read someone who is not afraid to say that the merger raises as many questions as it answers.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

AWS Rocks with Database Migration Tools

Traditional, enterprise vendors discount AWS as providing IaaS and PaaS with lots of integration and monitoring magic. Sort of like positioning the move to the cloud as out-sourcing the local datacenter hardware. But, adopting AWS is doing more than a forklift move, it's also an opportunity to convert older systems from proprietary to open-source. Quentin Hardy of the NYTimes notes some of these announcements at Amazon's latest conference: 
Among the most notable, there was a 47-pound data storage device that A.W.S. would ship to a customer [aka Snowball], and for $200 would suck down 50 terabytes of data, incidentally converting it from an older system to a more modern one. There was a service called Database Migration, which takes data in proprietary systems and converts their schema to open-source products.
This is quite a phenomenal service -- AWS can ship a Snowball appliance to a datacenter, where it can consume terabytes, ready to be shipped back and transfer the data much, much faster than doing it over-the-wire. Actually, AWS boasts that by serializing multiple Snowball appliances, the throughput can be measured as up to a petabyte/week.
Combine the Snowball technology, with the AWS database migration tools, and it's possible to move "database schemas and stored procedures from one database platform to another, so customers can move their applications from Oracle and SQL Server to Amazon Aurora, MySQL, MariaDB, and soon PostgreSQL."