European IT infrastructure decision makers will next year shift their focus away from consolidation and look to infrastructure automation and managing storage more efficiently, according to a report from analyst firm Forrester Research.
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Forrester's survey of the plans of 305 European IT infrastructure decision makers found that firms have lowered the priority of infrastructure consolidation projects.
Many of the large projects that were begun over the past two years are now complete, the analyst firm said.
Other priorities are now emerging to take the place of infrastructure consolidation, said Manuel çngel M‚ndez, associate analyst at Forrester. "Over the next 12 months, strengthening their security environment will be the top priority for almost 30% of firms, followed by business continuity investments and upgrading PCs or management systems," he said.
Chief among security concerns for 2006 are securing web services and storage, said çngel M‚ndez. More than 50% of the firms surveyed cited a desire to obtain the highest possible level of security as the reason for purchasing technology.
In addition, companies are starting to take advantage of infrastructure automation technologies such as server virtualisation and automated server patch management.
Users have significant investment plans around these, said çngel M‚ndez. "Twenty five per cent of European firms are currently using server virtualisation, and 67% of those plan to increase their usage over the next year."
Other technologies, such as archiving and computing grids, are generating high levels of awareness and interest among firms, with suppliers such as EMC, FileNet, HP and Sun likely to win new business in 2006, he added.
Storage and archiving technologies will also gain in popularity next year, with more than 30% of firms already using these tools, and a further 24% either showing interest or planning to adopt them, çngel M‚ndez said.
"The question mark lies in the systems management software market, where an average of 72% of firms have no plans to purchase management software."
IT infrastructure - what's in for 2006
- Server virtualisation
- Automated server patch management
- Computing grids
- E-mail archiving technologies
- Storage and web services security
- Datacentre consolidation
- Datacentre systems management software
- Client systems management software
- Archiving solutions for databases
Source: Forrester Research