Spiceworks Launches Free Cloud Service Detection for SMBs
At its annual SpiceWorld conference in London, professional IT social network firm Spiceworks announced new cloud service discovery features that enable its users to determine which cloud services are operating on their networks. The goal is to help IT personnel enhance network security and aggregate cloud licenses to acquire better volume discounts.
These new features are part of Spiceworks 6.0, which provides SMBs with a professional social network with freely available IT management software.
According to the company, the new cloud service discovery features in Spiceworks 6.0 can detect more than 40 widely used cloud services and allow IT to scan their networks to see which cloud services are being used and by whom, providing an extra layer of security and control.
Although I was mildly disappointed to learn that Spiceworks is located in Austin, Texas, and not on the Planet Arrakis, it is the largest social network for IT, connecting 2 million professionals with more than 1,000 technology brands. According to the company, it facilitates the trade of $350 billion worth of technology products and services per year. Spiceworks is also a Google Apps for Business partner.
This is the fourth year of Spiceworks’ SpiceWorld conference, which attracts IT professionals from SMBs and leading technology vendors to participate in breakout sessions, discussions and topics voted on by Spiceworks’ user community
According to the report, IT budgets continue to grow among SMBs, now averaging $152,000 per year. Forty-eight percent of SMBs now employ cloud services, up significantly from 28 percent in the first half of 2011 and higher than the 46 percent from the second half of 2011. The five most prevalent cloud services by usage are web hosting (49 percent), e-mail hosting (32 percent), data backup (25 percent), content filtering (24 percent) and application hosting (23 percent). The cloud services respondents are planning to add in the next six months are data backup (17 percent), application hosting (12 percent), data storage (12 percent) and e-mail hosting (11 percent).
Finally, 64 percent of SMBs responding use virtualization, up from 61 percent during the second half of 2011 and 54 percent from the first half of 2011. SMBs using the technology are virtualizing an average of 3.1 applications, compared with 2.1 applications in 2011.