Dale Vile

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Dale Vile is CEO and research director at Freeform Dynamics, a business he founded in 2005 to help guide IT pros on which technology to buy. During his time in IT, he has worked for large end user organisations and vendors, and has run both channel programmes and a reseller business.
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The pain and promise of x86 servers

Reader Study Advances in x86 server technology have been relentless. Year-on-year improvements in price-performance and advances in power efficiency have driven down the costs of commodity-based infrastructure. At the other end of the spectrum, you can now pretty much build your own virtual supercomputer or mainframe with modern x86 clusters …
Dale Vile, 10 Aug 2010
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Should your data centre look more like Google’s?

Reader Study With all the talk of cloud, some are predicting the death of the enterprise data centre. The argument is that renting capacity from a service provider reduces costs and therefore owning your own facility in the future will become an extravagant luxury that few will be able to justify. For those not buying this line of thinking …
Dale Vile, 09 Aug 2010
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Those demanding mobile users

Workshop For years, when we asked Reg readers what worried them about mobile, "security" was top of the list. Now business mobility has become a victim of its own success in many organisations, at least when looked at from IT's point of view. The problems of managing user expectations, integrating kit or compliance are familiar if you …
Dale Vile, 09 Jul 2010
The Register breaking news

Policing personal calls on business mobiles

Workshop Communications technology makes it easy to mix up personal and business calls. If you want to keep track of what you pay for, and minimise your mobile bills, then you should be able to monitor personal use at some level - either independently, or with the help of your service provider. Giving employees a mobile phone or handheld …
Dale Vile, 05 Jul 2010
The Register breaking news

Apple in the workplace

Mini Poll Apple's success as a manufacturer of consumer electronics is beyond question. The kit has become an accepted part of many people's lives, and the brand is one of the most well respected and desired on the planet. You might think this is good or bad. You might not care. This is secondary to the fact that the Apple phenomenon is …
Dale Vile, 30 Jun 2010
The Register breaking news

Mobile: what they need - and what they want

Workshop Many years ago an IT manager, responding to one of our research studies, said one of the saddest and most pathetic sights he had ever seen was a 100Kg salesman coming into his office telling him that his 120g mobile phone was too heavy. He needed an upgrade to something smaller and lighter. That was back in the days when mobiles …
Dale Vile, 22 Jun 2010
The Register breaking news

Resurrecting old jargon

Lab No one disputes the fact that there’s a lot of data kicking around in most businesses. Neither are there arguments about how hard it is to find relevant information when you need it. Sure, there are exceptions, and some very progressive businesses manage their so called ’information assets’ extremely well, but for most of the …
Dale Vile, 08 Jun 2010
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But is that really cloud computing?

Some have accused me of being a cloud computing sceptic, and it’s true that I have not been one for pulling punches in some of my previous articles on the topic (see here, here, here and here, for example). Let’s be absolutely clear, though - my criticisms have largely been around the language and messaging used by vendors, …
Dale Vile, 13 May 2010
The Register breaking news

Dumb questions on server computing

Lab Poll You listen to some marketeers and it’s all so simple. Whatever form of server computing they are promoting is assumed to be the answer to everything. Back in the real world, servers are obviously used for all kinds of stuff, from running boring back office systems, through highly dynamic Web applications, to core activities …
Dale Vile, 23 Apr 2010
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But is that really cloud?

Reader Mini-Poll Cloud computing is one of the most talked about topics in the industry at the moment. One of the difficulties, however, is that it is sometimes hard to work out exactly what people mean by it. Different vendors and service providers use the term in relation to some quite different types of offering. Various well-meaning …
Dale Vile, 16 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

To connect or not to connect?

Workshop Following our recent discussion of the pros, cons and practicalities of hooking up your ERP system to the outside world, we thought it would be good to tap into the views of Reg readers on the topic. So we put up a poll with an open comment facility and, true to form, almost 50 readers came back with their own experiences at the …
Dale Vile, 12 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

Does your IT universe revolve around ERP?

Workshop There are a couple of major pivot points for activity within the IT landscape. The first is the mainframe - that beast sitting in the data centre doing all the really important grown up processing and data management - which demands respect and needs to be constantly fed with budget and attended to by the high priests of that …
Dale Vile, 09 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

Connecting up your ERP to the outside world

Workshop Poll In this week's ERP workshop poll, we are looking at the practicalities of integrating with or providing access to the outside world - suppliers, distributors, resellers, customers and so on. If you have experience of ERP from this perspective, get clicking below with your feedback. READER POLL: 1. Which of the following groups …
Dale Vile, 07 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

ERP sans frontières

Workshop There was a time when the terms ‘ERP’ and ‘back office systems’ were almost synonymous, reflecting that the original incarnations of ERP offerings were very much concerned with processes running within the physical walls of the organisation. Over the years, though, functionality has expanded and integration capability evolved …
Dale Vile, 06 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

Reg reader tips for ERP success

Workshop When we asked Reg readers to tell us about the factors that impacted the success or failure of the last ERP implementation they were involved with, 50 of you came back with your insights. Of these, about a third had experience of actually managing an implementation, with most of the remainder having worked as part of an ERP …
Dale Vile, 01 Apr 2010
The Register breaking news

How not to screw up an ERP implementation

Workshop OK, so perhaps we were a bit ambitious with the title of this article. With so many variables and dependencies involved in an ERP implementation, it would be somewhat naive to claim there is a sure-fire formula for success. Nevertheless, feedback from Register readers in our current workshop and the general experience of those …
Dale Vile, 31 Mar 2010
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Biting the bullet on ERP implementation realities?

Mini Poll In this week's ERP workshop poll, we get right into the specifics of what makes or breaks an implementation project in the real world. If you have experience or opinions on this, we'd appreciate your input. READER POLL: BITING THE BULLET ON IMPLEMENTATION REALITIES? 1. What is your experience of ERP implementations? Have managed …
Dale Vile, 30 Mar 2010
The Register breaking news

Choosing an ERP implementation partner

Workshop Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) has been around for a long time, yet there is no de facto guide to making it work or any guarantee that you'll get what you want if you invest in it. Yet many thousands of instances of ERP from a range of software vendors are in play today. Despite the uncertainties, businesses make it work. So …
The Register breaking news

ERP deniers their own worst enemy

Workshop As new ideas and technologies emerge and develop in IT, we typically go through a maturity curve. Lots of problems are reported in the early days as a result of unproven products and lack of market ‘know how’ which gradually disappear over time as offerings become more robust, experience is gained, and best practices are defined …
Dale Vile, 26 Mar 2010
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Selecting an ERP supplier - the pitfalls and practicalities

Workshop The selection of an ERP system is a pretty strategic decision for most companies. Software of this kind tends to operate at the core of your organisation, and can therefore have a big impact on business robustness, efficiency and flexibility. Furthermore the time, resources and disruption generally associated with ERP …
Dale Vile, 25 Mar 2010
The Register breaking news

Customise the app or modify your business?

Mini Poll When implementing ERP, should you expect to tailor the product to your business or change your processes to match the product? It’s a key philosophical question that anyone who has implemented this kind of system will probably have an opinion on. This week’s poll looks at how this and other factors have an impact on supplier and …
Dale Vile, 24 Mar 2010
The Register breaking news

Telcos to deliver VaaS

This is hilarious or sad, whichever way you look at it. Eyeing the Twitter feed last night, I saw someone had tweeted a question about whether carriers were going to be moving to VaaS – ‘Voice as a Service’. When I asked if this was a joke, the reply was that a couple of telcos in the US were already starting to use this …
Dale Vile, 23 Mar 2010
The Register breaking news

Challenging accepted ERP wisdom

Workshop So you've been through an ERP implementation before and you know how it's all done? That’s good to hear, but if your experience was a few years ago, it might be worth taking a look at the way things have been changing. The truth is that anyone reviewing their ERP requirements today won't be doing themselves any favours if they …
Dale Vile, 22 Mar 2010
The Register breaking news

Just how does IT spend its time looking after ERP?

Poll Results Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) packages providing functionality to support core business processes in an integrated manner are a prominent feature in a lot of IT environments. But what kind of burden do they place on the IT department? Some of us who have been in the business for a while can remember the days when these …
Dale Vile, 19 Mar 2010
The Register breaking news

Do ERP projects ever end?

Workshop In some organisations, the ERP system represents the biggest single entity within the IT environment. This is particularly the case in industries such as manufacturing, distribution and others that are heavily manpower- or goods-centric. Even if ERP in itself doesn’t account for a lot of the infrastructure per se, it is one of …
Dale Vile, 18 Mar 2010