Three simple action items can help ensure your next infrastructure refresh cycle leaves your data center prepared and smelling minty fresh*.

Most rational folks agree: public cloud computing will be an integral piece of data center application deployment strategy in the future, but it will not replace IT.image Just as Web 2.0 did not make extinct the client-server model (which did not completely eradicate the mainframe model) neither will public cloud computing marginalize the corporate data center.

But it will be a part of that data center; integrated and controlled and leveraged via the new network.

As it implies, your network today is probably not the “new” network. It’s not integrated, it’s not collaborative, it’s not dynamic. Yet. It’s still a disconnected set of components covering a variety of application-related services: acceleration, optimization, security, load balancing. It’s still an unrelated set of policies spread across a variety of control mechanisms such as firewalls and data leak prevention systems. It’s still an unmanageable, untamable beast that requires a lot of spreadsheets, scripts, and manual attention to keep it reliable and running smoothly.

But it shouldn’t be for long IF there’s an efficient, collaborative infrastructure in the future of your data center. There probably is given the heavy emphasis of late on green computing (as in both cash and grass) and the more practical goal of more efficient data centers.