How I consume IT & Cloud Services – Part 1

I was recently asked after one of my presentations how I consume IT and the cloud.

After thinking about the question, I think I struggled to answer the question fully. I have taken some time to produce this article to really consider all the factors.

To provide an overview, my personal IT environment/equipment that I utilise to perform tasks regularly is as follows;

  • iPhone 5S 32GB
  • MacBook Air (13-inch, Mid 2013) 1.3 GHz Intel Core i5 / 4 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
  • iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) 3.5 GHz Intel Core i5 / 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3

As an extension to this I also have my home lab environment which I will cover in more detail in another article.

When I looked across my devices I noticed they were more standardised than I had thought. I have the same software installed across these devices which in turn allows me to move between them seamlessly.

The below list of software is installed on my desktop and laptop;

Being on the road often I am conscious of traveling light and having access to anything I need. Over the years, I have moved more into the cloud than I thought. My devices are ‘almost’ disposable items. Having all my data in the cloud makes traveling easy. If my device is misplaced I can buy another one, and keep working without too much interruption.

To keep track of notes and task tracking I utilise Evernote across devices. Dropbox and Google Drive store all my files. The only files that are stored on my devices are temporary files and photo’s. Photo’s get backed up almost immediately to prevent data loss. To engage with my social media channels, I utilise TweetDeck and Buffer.  To capture screen shots and video for content I use Camtasia 2 & Skitch. VMware Fusion is installed on my devices to provide access to my home lab and vSphere/vCenter environments. Surprisingly I do not run any local virtual machines. I will explain more on why I do not run local virtual machines in my home lab article.

All my devices are kept as up to date as possible, within hours of software updates being released, I usually have them installed.

Moving so much data to the cloud, security has been a concern. I have started to adopt 2 Factor Authentication for applications and services I consume. I will also cover this adoption and the remaining items I am still working on securing in a separate article.

Having an employer that has all business applications in the cloud also makes a big difference. I can perform my  work related tasks online.

One thing that may stand out to IT people is the lack of ram in my MacBook Air and iMac. Having no serious applications installed and most of my data in the cloud doesn’t need a lot to run browsers and applications. All the grunt that I need comes from my home lab.

More details to follow on 2 Factor Authentication and my security for the cloud, and also my home lab as an extension of my personal devices above and how I consume IT and the cloud.

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