8 data center forecasts for 2020

Jack Wallen shares his opinion on data centers and edge computing, Kubernetes, 5G, container security and more for the coming year.

Image: Getty Images / iStockphoto

The data center is the heart of your company. Although your company lives and dies due to its employees and products and / or services, IT cannot provide any level of functionality, reliability and agility without your data center.

What does 2020 bring for data centers? Let me stare into my crystal ball and share what I think the coming year has in store.

SEE: Data center access policy (TechRepublic Premium)

1. Increase in edge computing

More companies depend on the Internet of Things (IoT) devices for a number of services; therefore network architecture needs to be reconsidered. Because almost every enterprise company uses different forms of the cloud, they depend on a centralized network. This type of network is far from ideal for deploying IoT devices, and therefore many companies will focus on edge computing.

Edge computing is a technology paradigm that pushes core processing functions to the specific location where it is needed – often at the edges of the network. This makes it possible to collect and analyze data “on location” instead of sending the data back to the centralized cloud for calculation. Edge computing ensures maximum operational efficiency, improved performance and safety and minimizes downtime. I am pretty sure that we will see a huge increase in edge computing at the company level in 2020.

2. Tool that simplifies the implementation of Kubernetes

Kubernetes currently takes a lot of work to be proven right. It is complex; there are many moving parts; and the use of a really safe cluster is not for the faint of heart. I predict that a large part of that complexity will end in 2020. Some tools have already been developed to facilitate the implementation and management of Kubernetes clusters.

This new tool makes deploying Kubernetes clusters so easy that anyone with the least understanding of IT technology will be able to implement their own cluster with speed, reliability and even more important security. I am also pretty sure that this tool will be open source and will further promote Linux hold-over container technology.

3. Nearly 90% of data center traffic will focus on the cloud

I suspect that by the end of 2020, nearly 90% of all data center traffic will be focused on the cloud. This will be a combination of private, public and hybrid clouds and will be partly due to the continued growth of services such as AWS, Google Cloud Platform and Azure, and the use of those platforms for container clusters that serve apps and services.

With more social network services such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram that rely heavily on the cloud, it is almost a foregone conclusion that 2020 can easily become the year in which the cloud becomes the network and the network becomes the cloud.

4. An enormous break around a container implementation

Containers do not go away, and with their increase in popularity there is an increase in security threats. By the end of 2020, I predict that we will see at least one huge vulnerability that revolves around a container deployment. This infringement can come from a company that uses containers from an uncertain image or from a poorly configured network; anyway, this breach places the security of containers at the front and center, leading to a constituent technology of a sort of container security consortium.

SEE: How to choose between containers and virtual machines (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

5. More dependence on open source

Let’s face it, without open source, a number of enterprise-level technologies would not exist. In the coming year we will see that the dependence on open source data centers reaches a critical mass. Even now you would find it difficult to find a data center that does not use open source at a certain level. By the end of 2020 this will not only be clear, it will also shine.

More data centers depend on containers, automation, cloud, edge computing and other technologies that – simply put – are open to the core. This means that Linux will not only be the champion of the cloud, it will also manage the data center. Operating systems such as CentOS 8, RHEL, SLES and Ubuntu Server will see a huge increase in market share towards the end of the year.

SEE: Predicting 2020 trends in DesignOps, AppDev, AI, IoT and 5G (TechRepublic)

6. 5G infrastructure

With OEMs rolling out both devices and networks at the end of 2020, 5G is the standard. This means that any company that expands its edge computing profile will find 5G crucial to the success of this new application.

With a speed that is expected to be 10 times faster than 4G networks and the ability to support millions of devices per square mile, 5G allows remote sensors to update connected devices immediately. This increase in real-time processing means that you implement technology that can handle and manage 5G. For every company that uses IoT and edge computing, 5G is not just a reality – it’s a necessity.

7. Skynet is looming

In the coming year, dependence on automation of artificial intelligence (AI) will increase. The AI ​​used with CI / CD pipelines has become incredibly advanced. We can see self-programming, self-healing cluster implementations by the end of 2020. With the right combination of cluster-related components, it is possible to create a container system that can automatically update or roll back an implementation if an update fails. Developers will build on these systems to give automation of container clusters an almost SkyNet quality. The singularity can begin within some innocent cluster implementation.

SEE: Forrester: The 5 IoT predictions pave the way for 2020 (TechRepublic)

8. New skills required

If you think your job is safe, think again – newer and more complex technologies make the IT field even more competitive. By the end of 2020 you should consider adding the following skills to your toolkit or dealing with fierce competition for jobs:

Those are my predictions for data centers in 2020, although nothing is a certain bet – technology may come from nowhere and make everything else superfluous. Keep your eyes and ears open and think about the security of your data center.

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