Your questions answered

  • I have some applications that I believe are best left on premise. Can I buy my new hardware from you?

 

Sourcing/procurement is in our DNA. Our vast experience with specifying and delivering projects on time and our emerging technology vendor relationships give you the best of both worlds.

  • I have heard some horror stories, which have made me really nervous about moving to the cloud.

 

Cloud is a model not a place. You can still have a cloud first strategy and deliver all infrastructure from a private DC. Most of the horror stories you have heard are more than likely due to people bringing an ownership strategy into a rental model.

 

If you over-specify the infrastructure and leave it running 24/7 on a rolling monthly contract, you can expect you IT costs to increase.

 

If you are prudent, specify the infrastructure to meet the needs of the application, shut it down when not required (if you expect the machine to be needed for several years) and put it on a savings plan.

 

  • We have a mid-term strategy to move to the cloud, but need to EOL our current hardware. I really don’t want to buy new tin.

 

Inca can build and rent you a “staging” area in preparation for your move to the cloud. Our solutions are location agnostic. This can be on your premises, in a co-lo, where you manage the environment, or in our managed environment. We can start to layer on our cloud management platform, which will present this staging area as a private cloud, and will co-exist with your public cloud to aid a smooth migration

 

 

  • How do we best respond to our business immediate needs, drive innovation and promote digital transformation initiatives at the same time?

 

To be able to innovate without increasing HR overhead you need to free up valuable time within your existing team. We know it's difficult when everybody is already flat out 'keeping the lights on'.

 

There are several ways we can help with this challenge:

  1. Automate traditionally labour-intensive tasks. This will reduce costs and free up time.

  2. Present your existing estate in the same format as your desired direction of travel. We can give your existing virtual estates all the attributes that you would want/need from a cloud model.

 

        Self-Service Browser access

        Rightsize resources to optimise infrastructure

        Workload Migration to your direction of travel

 

   3. Commercial Modelling

 

  • How do we build a correlation in the toolset between IT and DevOps in a race for the best customer experience?

 

The inability of the IT department to respond to the demands of the development teams has been a significant contributor to the meteoric rise of the hyper-scale public cloud vendors. These two teams with their disparate needs don’t need to be in autonomous pillars. We can build an environment that has all the agility required by DevOps, but with all the necessary governance required by IT.

 

 

  • How do we approach a short fall between the supply of qualified IT professionals and the necessary IT skills to move forward?

 

You don’t need to understand all the functions of the components in a car to be able to drive it. There are too many moving parts. A human being trying to hold down a full time job, and up-skill themselves in their spare time to keep up with rapid technology development is like a hamster in a wheel. The wheel just keeps on spinning faster until the hamster can’t keep up anymore.

  1. The solution here is to build a robust API framework that will take the necessary telemetry from any of the underlying toolsets and present them in a familiar, easy to navigate UI for a consistent user experience.

  2. Set all necessary parameters in each of the toolsets to build the “governance” layer, and ONLY alert when something is outside of tolerance. 

  3. Reduce the complexity of the environment by reducing the number of interfaces and toolsets the team need to work with. This is not a rip and replace, as the underlying toolset still exists.

 

  • How do we merge legacy technologies with modern ones without sacrificing functionality and security? How do we ensure they co-exist and balance one another?

 

If you are talking about VMs and Containers then it’s an interesting challenge. Most security products were designed to operate in a static perpetual environment. They require data to traverse the device, in order to make decisions on whether to filter or forward packets. These devices form part of the data plane, and do not hold state.

 

This approach does not work in an ephemeral environment like Kubernetes, which is why things like Next Generation Firewalls (NGFW) can add no visibility into the Kubernetes environment. The good news is that we are seeing a raft of new technologies coming into the Kubernetes scanning and security spaces, and a number of acquisitions by incumbent security vendors, as they try and solve this challenge.

 

We prefer to look at this from an abstracted control plane perspective that will provide visibility into both, the VM and the K8s environment, and hold state for up to 3 years, as these are built for purpose as opposed to bolt on.

 

  • How do we integrate our software applications across different business units into one secure system that enables smooth operations of all business processes?

 

Do you mean SaaS applications that are bought and managed by the LOB as opposed to the IT team? If so, then you may have a political hurdle to overcome before you can solve the technical challenge. The good news is once you have solved the political problem, we can help you with the technical challenge.

 

Cloud in general encourages fragmentation, and this has been exacerbated by most people working from home. Not only you have fragmentation of the IT estate now, but you have an unknown dynamic perimeter.

 

VPN can be used to extend the perimeter, and MDM tries to solve this challenge, and works well with corporate owned devices but has never really worked with BYOD. Our preference here is to re-establish a known perimeter using an isolation layer. This means regardless of what app and where the user is, IT know where the perimeter is.

All corporate data remains inside the known perimeter, and the only thing that exists outside is pixels and keystrokes. The UX from the users perspective is exactly the same, just now IT has complete visibility of all apps, and users, therefore able to build consistent security policies, on a per app, per user basis.

 

  • How do we design an open architecture that best uses the cloud offerings and keep our business robust, agile and responsive to unforeseen challenges? 

 

Are you talking about K8s? Auto-scaling, auto healing, but this time not for Dev, but for Operations?

 

Absolutely! Couple of challenges to consider here:

  1. Legacy Apps – Can you migrate them to K8s?

  2. PaaS – Don’t be lured by the Hyper-Scale public cloud vendors to develop on their PaaS platforms,. You may find yourself being locked into their proprietary environments.

One of the beauties of K8s is its portability. You can spin up an environment into any infrastructure. We would always recommend going native so that you don’t lose this feature.