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January 2014, Volume 3, Number 1

Could the end of Nirvanix storage mean the end of cloud nirvana?

Cloud computing is often pitched as the ultimate in IT. Infinitely malleable, it's whatever package of flexibility, economy and let-someone-else-deal-with-the-hard-parts ease the proponent wants it to be. Events in recent months, however, have ripped deeply into the credibility of visions of cloud nirvana, reinforcing the value of in-house IT capability. Not least is the failure of Nirvanix, a well-funded provider of enterprise storage in the cloud. Suppliers fall in every industry, but Nirvanix storage departed in a way that left customers deeply disappointed -- not just about one company, but about the prospects for cloud services overall. Nirvanix appeared to be doing well, and then it faced sudden financial meltdown. With little warning, it told clients they had just two weeks to retrieve their data and make other arrangements. Two weeks would be a hellacious timeline for the most agile Web shop. But for enterprise IT shops running databases, applications and analytics that their businesses depend on day to day and minute to...

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