Staying close to the Edge when scaling the mountain of SAM data
It’s estimated that the Internet of Things (IoT) will grow to reach 75.4 billion devices in 2025, generating mountains of data that must be processed, analysed, and stored. This happens in a data centre, often located miles from the data source, creating latency issues. The time it takes for the data to travel the distance from its source to that central location means that operations relying on that processing are at risk of delay.
Enter: Edge Computing
You’d be forgiven for assuming this is a pretty complicated subject, and you’d be right to a certain extent, but essentially, edge computing is about performing data processing nearer the source of the data rather than it being centralised.
“Placing data and data-intensive applications at the Edge reduces the volume and distance that data must be moved.” – The IEEE Standards Association
… and if the data isn’t moving as far, it reduces latency.
How does the development of Edge Computing affect how Software Asset Management works?
To establish your organisation’s effective license position (ELP) requires cross referencing software license data, hardware data, and user data. Collecting that data is time consuming enough, but then normalising it, in order to make a meaningful, like-for-like comparison, takes even longer. License Dashboard’s technology platform performs this automatically. That’s already a huge time-saver, but when you consider that instead of having a single, centralised cloud infrastructure, there are multiple distributed, connected, and centrally managed computing infrastructures close to the data source, the reduction in the communication bandwidth removes what could potentially be a bottleneck in the system.
Your organisation is able to rely on accurate and up-to-date data, meaning asset lifecycle management is enhanced, you are more informed of your IT environment’s complexity, and any investment in ITSM is optimised to its full potential.
License Management as a Service on the Edge
Putting proximity to one side, the actual transmission of data, especially mountains of it, is costly. Financially it’s expensive, and in terms of resources, it can choke the network. Edge Computing means that data isn’t constantly being sent to the local private cloud, but is filtered so that only the most relevant information is being processed. Rather than a constant stream, for example, this could take the form of a weekly update, or depending on the nature of the data, it could be transferred only when a change is registered.
License Management as a Service (LMaaS) via License Dashboard’s Managed Service is offered in two ways. The complete outsourcing option will minimise infrastructure and support costs as the administration and control of your organisation’s software license management is taken out of house. Managed service via network access means that all data is kept onsite, and License Dashboard access it remotely to complete the administration and management of software licenses.
While LMaaS doesn’t have the ad-hoc and self-healing properties of Edge Computing, the distributed data collection and processing is completed close to the source, securely transferring the vastly filtered data into License Dashboard’s cloud environment hosted by IBM Bluemix where it is further processed by the Software Asset Management team. Without this local processing, sorting, and filtering, the volume of raw data would prove too massive for a cloud environment.
Local control, reduced bandwidth, and better efficiency
As more connected devices produce more data, processing and analysing that data becomes more demanding. Edge computing means the ability to act on the information being collected has never been so rapid, but the rate at which these technologies are developing means the Edge will become essential in data processing.
The cloud, general business growth, and the adoption of connected devices and the IoT are top of the list of challenges for software asset managers these days. Harnessing the principles of Edge computing will help make that ever-growing mountain of data more manageable, and will remove the bottleneck associated with a centralised cloud infrastructure.