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Managing and Using Information System by Carol S. Saunders, Keri E. Pearlson

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ARCHITECTURE AND INFRASTRUCTURE

This chapter provides managers with an overview of IT architecture and infrastructure issues and designs. It begins by translating a business into IT architecture and then from the architecture into infrastructure. The manager's role is then discussed, and an example of a fictitious company, TennisUp, is used to show how strategy leads to infrastructure. The framework used to describe the basic components of architecture and infrastructure, introduced in Chapter 1, is revisited here, providing a language and structure for describing hardware, software, network, and data considerations. Common architectures are then presented, including centralized, decentralized and Web-based Services Oriented Architecture (SOA). Architectural principles are covered, followed by a discussion of enterprise architecture. Virtualization and cloud computing, two current architectural considerations, are reviewed. The chapter concludes with a discussion of managerial considerations that apply to any architecture.

Valero Energy, the North American oil and gas refiner, has experienced hypergrowth for the past ten years, mostly through acquisitions.1 The company's revenue has grown from $29 billion to $90 billion, but with this growth came a mixture of different information technology (IT) systems and applications that were difficult and expensive to manage, and that ...

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