Stories by Mark Leon

iSCSI: The rising enterprise star

Fibre Channel was definitely not top of mind when Chris Brown hit the wall on disk space and, in mid-2005, decided to go shopping for a SAN. Brown is IT manager for DeltaValve, a division of Curtiss-Wright Flow Control. "I have an IT staff of two," he explains, "and we do not have the resources to support Fibre Channel."

The looming threat of pharming

Security experts call it the soft underbelly of the Internet, and hackers, having drawn first blood, are ripping at it with new enthusiasm.

Case Study: Outsourcing BI with control

Business intelligence -- the collection and analysis of a company's most valuable data -- seems an unlikely task to farm out to contractors. But some companies are doing exactly that. Why? Because they lack the in-house skills needed to perform statistical analysis or maintain a data warehouse. And if you want to turn BI over to the experts, there are more options than ever -- along with the same big worry: losing control of your data quality.

Dashboard democracy

The executive information systems (EIS) of the 1980s stayed in the executive suite and provided fancy pie charts of financial data. But now these business-intelligence tools have found a new home in the cubicles. They've also found some new names: "dashboards and scorecards," says John Hagerty, an analyst at AMR Research in Boston. "We are now seeing them all over the enterprise, and for a variety of reasons." Hagerty says more than half of the 135 companies he recently surveyed are implementing dashboards, which are also spreading into various nonfinancial departments.

Keys to the kingdom

It's no secret that in a back room in the typical enterprise, there's a team of analytical wizards running sophisticated queries that mine for gems such as data about the company's best customers -- those top 20 percent of clients that produce 80 percent of the company's profits. These jewels can be a business's most valuable intellectual property, which makes them very valuable to competitors.

COMDEX: Cognos wires up RIM

At Comdex this week in Chicago, Cognos will announce a partnership with Research in Motion (RIM) that extends the reach of Cognos' new alert and notification system, NoticeCast, to RIM's Blackberry device.

Web services are more than hype

While BEA Systems was busy touting new Web services capabilities this week during its annual eWorld user conference, show attendees demonstrated interest in the emerging application development and deployment paradigm, though with some degree of caution.

Microsoft brews enterprise Hailstorm

Despite lacking a clear business plan, Microsoft Corp. is preparing to release a new version of its .Net My Services infrastructure platform ahead of its expected deployment in the enterprise.

Priced to sell ... to you

Signalling an attempt to link its database and grid computing plans, IBM has revealed that the next release of its DB2 database will ease administration hassles and contain better XML document support.

IBM to ease DB2 admin

Signalling an attempt to link its database and grid computing plans, IBM has revealed that the next release of its DB2 database will ease administration hassles and contain better XML document support.

Ilog files vote for .Net

Angling to secure its position in the Web services world, software component manufacturer Ilog has started porting its products to the Microsoft .Net platform.

Web analytics growing fast

Web analytics vendor NetIQ Corp. in San Jose, California, has a new version of CommerceTrends, its Web analysis tool.

Siemens embraces VoIP

Siemens Enterprise Networks on Monday will announce PBX equipment designed to help businesses make the transition to IP-based telephony.

J2EE 1.3 has a day in the Sun

Debate over standards compliance came into focus Tuesday when Sun Microsystems assembled a panel of 18 software vendors at a J2EE 1.3 compatibility event in San Francisco.