The emergence of the “return to on-premise” movement and its background

As the use of the cloud accelerates, it is said that the so-called “return to on-prem” movement, in which in-house systems that were once cut out to the cloud are returned to on-premises, is becoming apparent.


Last year, the Rakuten Group decided to return to on-prem. We are expanding the environment of the private cloud “One Cloud” and promoting the integration of the IT infrastructure used by the various businesses of our group companies. In principle, many systems currently running on public clouds will be shifted to One Cloud. In addition to improving cost efficiency by promoting the consolidation of IT infrastructure into a private cloud for the entire group, the company plans to accumulate IT infrastructure know-how for stable operation and enhanced security.


Private clouds will also be used as the basis for IT services for corporations that are planning to enter the market. The plans include eKYC for identity verification, website access analysis, and electronic payment functions. Both technologies were developed for use in the Group’s business, and preparations are underway to sell them externally as pay-as-you-go public cloud services.


With the advent of cloud first, it is said that opportunities to introduce on-premises servers are definitely decreasing for many companies. However, if you turn your attention to the server market, the movement is still strong. At first glance, it seems contradictory, but what is behind this?


Background of “on-premise regression”


The server market seems to be growing favorably in 2022, with a year-on-year increase of 10-20%.


Even in the early 2000s, when server virtualization began to become popular, it was said that servers would not sell as a result of server consolidation. However, in reality, this is not the case. Virtualization has made it easier to procure servers, and conversely, the introduction of various systems has become more active, leading to the demand for more servers.


Currently, with the tailwind of DX, IT investment is becoming active, and system utilization that was not possible before is spreading. Given the rapid increase in server resources required by the cloud, the expansion of the server market is rather natural.


On the other hand, one of the reasons behind the recent boom in the use of on-premise servers by general companies is that misunderstandings about the cloud have been cleared after actually using it. In retrospect, the cloud has attracted great expectations for its ability to use resources at extremely low cost and to reduce the workload by cutting out operations to the outside.


However, in reality, there are many cases in which unexpectedly high charges are billed as a result of using the cloud without understanding the characteristics of the cloud in terms of cost.


Also, in terms of operation, the hardware amulet is gone, but the operation of the system itself still remains. Cloud management requires different knowledge than on-premises, and in the current situation where many companies have systems on both on-premises and in the cloud, dual management will inevitably occur. This is no small burden for busy IT departments.


There are also security issues. Existing legacy systems that handle highly confidential data cannot be abolished on-premises because they cannot be operated on public clouds. As a result, IT operations become more complex, leading to problems such as increased operational management loads.


As the understanding of these “realities” has progressed, there is a swing back to the style of coexisting with the cloud, returning the systems that were once cut out to the cloud and returning them to the on-premises, starting with those that were judged to be “not suitable”.


On-pre regression will progress in the present progressive form. However, companies that have experienced the cloud know its advantages. Is the conventional on-premise IT infrastructure that such companies should aim for?


There are two approaches to the current “on-premise regression”


There are currently two approaches to on-premise regression. One way is to leave the server-related data in the cloud and return only the key data in DX to the on-premises. Another is to bring the whole system back on-premises. The problem is the latter method.


It is clear that it is not a 3 Tier type (a system configuration in which a group of servers and shared storage are connected with a network fabric) designed with SPOF (single point of failure) that emphasizes only cost. However, It doesn’t mean that the 3-tier model is bad for all proposals. Even after considering appropriate measures to address issues, the larger the scale, the more complex it becomes. No one wants to go back to a situation in which each time a review is made, discussions between the people in charge of servers, storage, and networks lead to long lead times, and issues such as hardware generations cause high replacement costs.


What we should aim for is the adoption of a cloud-like virtualization platform. From that point of view, HCI (Hyper Converged Infrastructure), which realizes a cloud-like system infrastructure, is currently attracting attention. It seems that this HCI has greatly improved the evaluation. HCI, which implements pre-verified server, storage, and network functions in software and stores them in a single box, and is provided together with virtualization middleware, greatly simplifies the configuration of the IT infrastructure. Even without specialized knowledge, resources can be easily expanded by adding nodes, achieving scalability close to that of the cloud.


HCI, which can maintain a simple configuration, is likely to continue to attract attention in the future, in contrast to the 3-tier configuration, which increases in complexity as it grows in scale.



Google warns Irish government moratorium on data center development

Irish government restricts data center development


Ireland’s The Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) has decided to limit the impact by imposing a de facto moratorium on new data center development in the Dublin metropolitan area.


Ireland’s national transmission operator EirGrid said in response that it would only consider new applications for grid connection on a case-by-case basis. The restrictions could reportedly last until 2028.


Martin Shanahan, CEO of Ireland’s Industrial Development Authority (IDA), recently said that new data centers “are unlikely to occur in Dublin and the East Coast at this time.”


Google has asked such Irish regulators not to impose a moratorium on data center development in the country.


In The Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) filing, the company said search and cloud companies must “absolutely” avoid a moratorium on data center development.


Google said such a ban would send a “wrong signal” about Ireland’s digital economy ambitions, and would affect the country’s infrastructure, according to a Freedom of Information request first reported by The Irish Times. It adds that it makes further investment “impossible”.


In the filing, Google called for more transparency about where the Irish network has existing power capacity, as well as being clearer and more open about EirGrid’s projections of data center power usage growth. I think you need to.


Growing Demand for Cloud Computing, Google’s Proposal


Google, which launched its first data center in Ireland in 2012, has proposed a new pricing structure for data center operators who reserve more capacity than they ultimately need or grow to that capacity too slowly. bottom.


“Transmission tariffs can be designed so that consumers who are not seeing increased demand towards maximum reserved capacity will be charged more than consumers who are demonstrating an increase each year.” says.


EirGrid and politicians have previously suggested moving data center development to the west of Ireland (away from Dublin’s constrained areas and closer to renewable energy sources), but Google says this is not a viable solution. I point out that it is not.


“The demand for cloud computing in Dublin is growing. We are unable to provide services.”


Another AWS filing says Ireland has missed opportunities in the past to address supply issues.


“Over the past decade, we have had opportunities to do reinforcement work, prepare the grid for growth and investment, and prepare the grid for more intermittent integration of resources,” he said.


Both the Social Democrats and the People Before Profit parties have been calling for a nationwide moratorium on future data center projects for the past 12 months. The PBP bill was an absolute ban on data centers, liquid natural gas plants and new fossil fuel infrastructure.


In Dublin last month, South Dublin County Council (SDCC) voted to block future data center construction in the county as part of a new development plan.

What is the background behind the Irish government’s moratorium on data center development?


Irish Government Behind Data Center Development Moratorium


The Irish government’s achievement of emissions and renewable energy targets is behind this.


According to EirGrid, data center energy usage is projected to increase by 9TWh by 2030, ranging from 23% to 31% of Ireland’s grid supply in 2030. This comes at a time when the government wants to reduce emissions by 60-80% by increasing the share of renewable energy. At the same time, governments want to decarbonise by moving heating and transportation to electricity, further increasing demand on the grid.


According to The Irish Times, EirGrid has agreed to connect an additional 1.8GW of data centers to the grid, with current peak demand of around 5GW, and a further 2GW of applications ready. That’s it.


The Government Statement on the Role of Data Centers in Ireland’s Enterprise Strategy 2018, published in 2018, emphasized the positive role of data centers in the country’s economic performance. However, it will now be “aligned with sectoral emissions caps and renewable energy targets, concerns about continued security of supply, and demand flexibility measures currently needed. In order to secure it, it will be reviewed. “In addition, further tightening of regulations will be considered,” it is reported.


Will it work or will it backfire?


The Irish government imposes a moratorium on data center development, which is in high demand worldwide. It seems that the moratorium continues while receiving a warning from Google. Will this decision work or will it backfire? We will keep an eye on trends.