Neeraj Bhatia, Director – Partner, Alliances & Commercial Sales, Red Hat

In today’s challenging economic climate, forward-looking organizations are upgrading their IT infrastructure and implementing virtualization and cloud computing solutions to improve business agility and drive down costs.The data center market in its entirety has seen tremendous growth over the past couple of years.According to a report from 451 Research, this market is expected to reach $36 billion worldwide by 2017. India is poised to be a $4.5 billion data center market by 2018 and will reach $7 billion by 2020, at a growth rate of 23%. This is a massive number signifying that more data center organisations are keen on setting up their infrastructure here.

Earlier, customers used to run on vendor-locked technologies for their data centers, as their application of choice required a particular platform. Open source has now become the key driver in the design, implementation and management of new generation data centers.More organisations today are deploying open solutions for data centers, to increase interoperability and ensure smooth, agile and efficient service delivery. With the increased use of cloud based infrastructure, there is even more demand for standardized applications and operating environments which are open source in nature. The primary advantage that open source technologies bring to data centers is standardization. Open data centers enable developers to bring in more innovation and speed to operating environments. Open source also fosters collaboration within the community to help resolve issues and problems with speed and efficiency. Apart from these, one of the biggest advantages that an open DC provides is a dramatic reduction in cost due to an increase in smooth processing.

Traditionally, data centers were designed to be able to accommodate different solutions for multiple needs from different vendors. This would lead to inefficiencies in deployment, maintenance and overall cost of ownership. With open data centers, especially in today’s cloud oriented world, organisations are now thinking in terms of standardized workloads running on open technologies. This has led to standardization of the underlying infrastructure and the software required to manage it. This has not only led to overall efficiency but has also enabled the data center to support newer services thus resulting inorganizational growth.

An open environment benefits every single new-age company that is redefining ways of doing business using open source solutions in order to bring innovation faster to market. Sectors that are driving the growth of open data centers are BFSI, telecom, IT, social media and e-governance initiatives. An open data center will free every single vertical from locked systems and high costs of deployment & management. That said, adoption of open data centers brings its own sets of challenges. The primary one is security. It is important for organisations to fully develop an understanding of the data life cycle and measures that can provide them with proper data protection. While implementing an open data center, it is also important to have properly trained and skilled personnel handling the deployment.

With the government’s open source policies for initiatives such as Digital India, Make in India, the progression towards open data centers is a natural effect due to the generation of massive amounts of data that need proper data center solutions. This initiative will help create a lot of innovative technologies, in turn helping build country’s infrastructure and at the same time be agile, powerful and productive enough.

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