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Picking the right strategy 'the key to the information age'

11/14/2012 | Data centers |

With more people than ever online and companies able to gather much larger amounts of data than in the past, enterprises are going to have to come to terms with the fact we're now in a new age of information. If you doubt this, consider the fact that - according to Microsoft - 90% of all the information that's ever been gathered has been created in the last two years alone. As a result of this, the software firm observed that "the gigabyte is going the way of the megabyte" to become a unit that isn't relevant to modern computing. It noted the future lies in terabytes and perhaps even larger measurements.

This presents a huge opportunity for businesses if they can exploit the data available to them. For example, research by the McKinsey Global Institute estimates that public sector organisations in Europe could save €250 billion from more effective use of information. But in order to see results, you need to have the right tools in place to analyse and manage the huge amount of information held in future data centers. Microsoft noted big data is useless on its own, as the real value comes from the insights that can be gained from evaluation of the details.

This point can often be overlooked among abstract talk of the big data trend, it was noted. Microsoft observed that ultimately, the technology should be about making it easier for workers to gain insight into their company's operations and highlight where changes can be made. The firm said: "[IT] is great at providing answers, but it still doesn't know how to ask the right questions - and that's where having the right analytics tools and applications can help companies make the leap from simply storing mountains of data to actually working with it."

Microsoft noted there are a range of tools that companies that take advantage of to make this easier. It observed cloud-based solutions such as Microsoft HDInsight Server for Windows and Apache Hadoop-based applications for Windows Azure and Windows Server can play a key role in gathering and assessing valuable data. Therefore, it may be worthwhile for you to investigate the solutions that are available to help you get the best out of the information held in your data centers.

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