Sidus provides a wide range of hosting, design, marketing and consulting solutions.
Sidus provides a wide range of hosting, design, marketing and consulting solutions.
Monday, 08 October 2012 15:21
It’s been a few months since my last blog and even though I’m seeing a lot of companies softening their stance on the cloud, there are still those who are reluctant to make the switch. Some fear losing control, some think it’s not as secure, and I’m sure some are even thinking that it threatens their job security. No matter what the excuse, such reasons are just not accurate. Computing power should be seen as a utility just like electricity, cable television and telephone – a monthly service where you are only billed for what you use. No longer should companies have to worry about large capital investments in expensive servers and software, or extra IT staff to keep them running.
In the last blog I started to go over the NIST definition of cloud computing. In this blog I’m going to dive a little deeper and explain the five essential characteristics of the cloud.
Tuesday, 05 June 2012 17:30
Socrates said "the fear of death is indeed the pretense of wisdom." Basically put, you don’t know what you don’t know. Is this why people have a fear of cloud computing? Depending on whom you talk to, the cloud is either the savior of the world, or a passing fad that will allow everyone and their Aunt Betty access to your most confidential information.
Let’s look at this another way. Whatever your interpretations of cloud computing are, they are likely only half right. Yes, SaaS companies such as Salesforce.com and NetSuite offer excellent cloud based applications, but this model is only part of it.
According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology, "cloud computing is a model for enabling ubiquitous, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction. This cloud model is composed of five essential characteristics, three service models, and four deployment models."
Wednesday, 28 March 2012 15:07
I have a friend who works for an integrator/VAR in the DC area. Every day he goes to work and is stuck in some sort of “Groundhog Day” nightmare that still thinks it’s 2005. He spends all day on the phone trying to sell hardware, licensing and support contracts to businesses throughout the mid-Atlantic.
How does this sound?
"Hi this is _______ from ABCD Tech and I’ve noticed that your licensing for ____________ is up for renewal next month. I can offer you a two year renewal at a discounted price of $10,995."
"Good morning, this is _________ from ABCD Tech and I’m calling to tell you about our the newest SAN from _______ . If you order within the next two weeks, I can give you 3.75% off of the list price and the vendor will send me a nice spiff."
This is definitely not the way to do business in 2012. Owning and maintaining your own servers, SANs, etc. is not only a waste of money, but it’s also a waste of your company’s valuable time and resources.
Wednesday, 08 February 2012 15:35
So, what is the difference between a dedicated and multi-tenant platform? Let’s think of a Datacenter as a city with hotels, apartments, and single-family homes:
In the public cloud each company has its own virtual server but is sharing everything else such as hardware, firewalls, storage etc.
In the private cloud, companies have dedicated equipment which is owned and managed by the cloud service provider.
Single family homes/Co-location
Companies own and most often manage their own equipment, but they keep it in a Datacenter facility to take advantage of the infrastructure and support.
Sidus BioData, leading provider of Compliant Cloud Hosting for Life Sciences and Health IT companies across the globe, has been invited by the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development’s Biotechnology Center (MBC) to exhibit at the MEDICA 2011 tradeshow, the world's largest event for the Medical Sector. Sidus' Validated Hosted Solutions and Services will be showcased at the conference taking place in Dusseldorf Germany, November 16-19, 2011.
Hosting was once the domain of websites, poetry blogs, and small businesses. In the last 10 years the industry has taken hold and an outsourced infrastructure is now the norm for corporations big and small, local and global. The added burden placed on companies regulated by 21 CFR Part 11, Annex 11 and the associated GMP’s, has caused many to shy away from Compliant Hosting. I recently had the opportunity to discuss this topic with Stephen Ferrell. Stephen is the outgoing chair of the GAMP IT Infrastructure Special Interest Group, he leads the V&V group for a local BioTech company, and he supports Sidus BioData as a Regulatory Advisor.
Whether you are an established biotech, pharmaceutical or medical device manufacturer or are simply getting your feet wet, it’s inevitable that your business will need some combination of the following systems:
If you are a Medical Device developer, a Biotech firm or Pharmaceutical Manufacturer, you are required to follow either 21 CFR Part(s) 210 & 211 or 21 CFR part 820. In tandem with 21 CFR Part 11, all of the computer systems used to support your manufacturing and design processes require validation. Often manufacturers make the mistake of attempting to claim that their computer systems are purely reference tools and that paper reigns. This approach has the potential to mislead, confuse and ultimately break the law. There are several citations issued by FDA including:
“Failure to validate computer software for its intended use according to an established protocol when computers or automated data processing systems are used as part of production or the quality system, as required by 21 C.F.R. §820.70(i) (Production and Process Controls - Automated Processes).”
Tuesday, 02 August 2011 00:00
These days, it isn’t hard to find a datacenter claiming “HIPAA Hosting” or “HITECH Hosting.” What is hard to find is a datacenter that truly understands and adheres to the guidelines surrounding HIPAA compliance. The exception, is Sidus BioData. Our datacenter is in full compliance with all health data regulations – we have a regulatory roadmap and quality manual to prove it, something I can say with certainty (because I have done my homework) that most others do not.
Tuesday, 19 July 2011 00:00
When 21 CFR Part 11 was introduced in 1997, it created in equal measure - confusion and consultants. Fourteen years on, the confusion has largely disappeared and while regulation remains under review the chances of wholesale changes are highly unlikely. The cottage industry of consultants remains though, eager to serve for three months and leave a pile of validation protocols in their wake. While there are many competent hardworking consultants out there, there are many yet, who by virtue of their profession, have never sat in front of FDA or EMEA, have never had to defend last weeks, last month, or last years validation package.
Thursday, 24 March 2011 00:00It seems everywhere you turn there's someone talking about cloud computing. Now even Microsoft is touting the cloud in its advertising for consumer products. Even though the cloud is nothing new, the way it is being used in business most certainly is. Because of virtualization and the amount of inexpensive bandwidth available, moving your data to the cloud has never been easier, faster or safer. The days of an organization investing large amounts of capital building and maintaining an under/over utilized IT infrastructure are quickly coming to a close. It’s a new day, a new way and the cloud is here to stay.
Tuesday, 15 February 2011 00:00
Simply put, a compliant data center is a data center that conforms to a set of regulatory rules, specifications, standards or laws. Conforming to mandated laws or standards to meet federal and commercial regulations requires a considerable investment in, infrastructure, personnel and services. However, due to the significant cost, many commercial or private data centers have not made the proper investment in the physical, environmental and operational controls and services to meet the minimum regulatory requirements.
The most regulatory requirements map to industry best practices:
This is just the start, here is an example of a Compliant Data Ceter
IT security and Information Assurance professionals tasked with ensuring their information systems meet compliance requirements, have limited options when it comes to selecting a compliant data center.
Thursday, 03 February 2011 00:00
There is a learning curve for people who are just entering the tech industry or those who work with people in the tech industry. It can be a report or a discussion; there are a lot of acronyms thrown around. After reading this you will be able to catch some of these acronyms. Hey, if nothing else I’ve been told these are great at parties.
1. CMS = Content Management System
What Is It? A dashboard in which people who are not web designers or programmers, manage almost every aspect of a website.
Who Uses It? You! A lot of companies and individuals use this to manage and edit basic aspects of their individual website. These aspects include low level design work, simple updates, and other simple tasks.
Wednesday, 02 February 2011 00:00
Myth #1: Cloud computing is just a marketing buzzword.
Busted: The term “cloud” is being used in many ways. I’m sure you’ve seen the Windows commercials, saying “Take it to the cloud”. The term “cloud” can and will, be thrown around, but it is not the “same old thing” with a new name. Cloud computing is simply services, applications, and storage that are provided over the Internet. Cloud computing is a new and more effective way of doing business.
Friday, 17 December 2010 19:06
“By 2012, 20 percent of businesses will own no IT assets,” or so predicts leading information technology research and advisory company, Gartner. This decrease in the need for IT hardware stems from an acceleration in the adoption of cloud enabled services, with managed private cloud offerings steadily gaining ground. For companies looking to reap the numerous benefits that public cloud computing affords, but achieve more control, reliability and security, managed private clouds prove to be more than just an IT finance manager’s dream come true.
This white paper explores managed private cloud computing, explains what to look for in a private cloud provider, and provides a case study of one organization’s success in moving their mission critical data from an onsite model to a secure managed private cloud, forever changing the landscape of their business.
Wednesday, 30 June 2010 14:20
Last week's Chesapeake Regional Tech Council BBQ on the Bay was a great venue for Sidus to not only market their cutting edge Cloud Hosting services but also hear what local business leaders are saying about the future of Cloud Computing. 350+ attendees were focused on business (small/medium/large) and all seemingly curious as to how technology impacts the success or failure of those businesses.
Wednesday, 19 May 2010 14:13
Last February, President Obama signed into law the $19.2 billion Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act to accelerate the process of digitizing electronic health records (EHR) in the United States. Under this law, hospitals and healthcare professionals who demonstrate “meaningful use” of a certified EHR by the year 2015 will become eligible to receive millions of federal dollars in incentive payments, and those who do not comply could be penalized. In addition, healthcare organizations must comply with related security and privacy requirements. This has proven both a powerful motivator and source of great concern for many healthcare professionals across the country.
Wednesday, 07 April 2010 13:31
Gartner has come up with an interesting prediction saying “a fifth of enterprises will hold no IT assets by 2012 as cloud computing and virtualization become commonplace.”
Obviously Gartner benefits from making controversial pronouncements... still we wonder.
Wednesday, 07 April 2010 13:24
Sidus celebrating its first 10 years has really got me thinking about the rapid progression of the internet and computing power over the past decade. A couple of then vs. now scenarios:
Friday, 08 January 2010 20:08
Data, Data, Data! This is the mantra for 2010. The best part is the cost to manage this data has fallen drastically over the past 5 years.
Cloud Computing will accelerate the effective and efficient management of data for the coming years.
Thursday, 12 November 2009 00:00
While most organizations either have or are planning a “green initiative”, most technology companies’ efforts grind to a halt when it comes to environmentally conscious hosting infrastructures. Traditionally there has been a perception that Green Technology must be expensive or require a major compromise in the price to performance factor. Sidus Cloud hosting, however, is Green Hosting without the expense or compromise.
The Sidus Cloud Green Hosting infrastructure starts with ultra-efficient Dell PowerEdge blade servers. The Sidus blade infrastructure provides the first building block of a Green hosting initiative Take a look at the table below for a comparison.
Thursday, 12 November 2009 00:00
With cloud computing growing in popularity, SMBs (and others) are questioning whether it is more practical to colocate their data centers or completely bypass that option and head into the cloud. First, let’s briefly clarify the two:
Data center co-location: Typically provided as a commercial service, this option allows SMBs to rent data center space from a third party facility that provides necessary pipe (network connectivity to the Internet) and ping (network response). Space is usually leased as individual rack units, cabinets, cages, suites, rooms and facilities
Cloud computing: By moving to the ‘cloud,’ SMBs have the ability to store and process data over the Internet. For clarity, Gartner defines cloud computing as “a style of computing where scalable and elastic IT capabilities are provided as a service to multiple customers using Internet technologies”
Colocation addresses data center facilities needs. Cloud computing includes IT infrastructure as well as data center facilities, all delivered as a service. Both options provide network and cost-saving benefits, and SMBs can benefit greatly from either solution.
Thursday, 09 July 2009 18:42
While many in the hosting industry are still wed to cumbersome and tape based systems for their disaster recovery plan, Sidus has taken a different route. Understanding that for most dedicated server and colocation clients, unless they need to meet certain compliance guidelines like HIPPA or SARBOX, managed disk-base server image backup is the far superior route for rapid data recovery. Tape systems should be used only in the role of long term data archiving.
Consider this scenario that recently occurred to a moderately sized e-commerce client of Sidus Data:
Tom’s Online Widgets and More is no Amazon.com, but does a fairly brisk business of 85 orders per hour with an average ticket of $35 per order. This means on average, Tom pulls in $2975 per hour in widgets sold off of his eCommerce dedicated server. Additionally, Tom’s orders are split into 60 orders from new shoppers and 25 from returning shoppers.
Tom’s server crashed due to a corruption of the file system.
In a traditional Tape + Incremental backup scenario, Tom’s would have had experienced six hours of downtime. This time is required to reinstall the operating system on the server, configure it and retrieve the data off of the tape system.
For Tom, this means $17,850 in lost revenue, 510 widgets that were destined for a new home are still sitting on the shelves and 360 committed new customers as well as 150 loyal repeat customers have been turned away with money in hand.
Luckily, it didn’t turn out this way!
By utilizing Sidus Host’s Acronis True Image backup program backed up onto our disk-based SAN, Sidus engineers were able to restore Tom’s online store within 30 minutes of the failure. Our Image-based backup negated any need to reinstall server operating systems and applications, and the rapid accessibility of Tom’s data on our Storage Array Network allowed us to recover his server image in mere minutes.
For Tom, this means that he saved $16362.50 in lost revenue and earned the business of 468 shoppers. The best part is the amount of money saved in this one incident paid for Tom’s Sidus provided managed backup solution for nine years…That’s a lot of widgets!
Monday, 06 July 2009 12:47
The web is so pervasive that it is necessary for all companies and organizations to have a fully developed strategy to utilize the strength of this medium. When a company seeks to develop an effective strategy for the web, it should look at multiple facets.
Since 1999, Sidus has executed hundreds of web projects. We have a vertical structure that allows our customers to have a streamlined and integrated approach for design, hosting, application development and marketing.
We understand that each project is unique, but shared characteristics with other organizations. We have the experience to make this process very efficient and always focus on driving the positive outcomes.
Friday, 03 July 2009 10:05
The true genius of innovation is the ability for people and companies to work together. For the past five years, Sidus has worked very closely with a number of application companies for the development and deployment of their applications. Our ability to create a hosted solution that works, allows our clients to focus on their software.
This has been a winning formula for us and our partners.
Thursday, 25 June 2009 15:18
The economy today is a very challenging time for many businesses. Sidus is receiving more requests for hosting than ever, due to the costs saving element of our hosting services. The following are many reason why companies and organizations are using providers like Sidus for their hosting needs:
1) Owning servers is more expensive, especially in the short run, than having a server provided for you. You do not have to worry about managing the Operating Systems, Firewalls, Backup and other required elements. Equipment refresh is done without incurring the high costs of purchasing new equipment every two or three years.
2) Virtualization optimizes equipment utilization, minimizing costs
4) We know technology and will be a resource for you to stay current.
5) YOU CAN FOCUS ON YOUR BUSINESS.
We will make your system run 24/7 and save you money in the process. After ten years, we know our business and that will enable you to focus on yours and not have the burden and cost of providing a top tier hosting solution for you.