Four out of five enterprises are now giving cloud computing a try. New research has confirmed that at least 80 percent of IT managers are looking at the technology.

Earlier this month, a survey for grid specialist Platform Computing found that more than a quarter of IT executives planned to introduce private clouds this year. But now new research from F5 Networks has confirmed that cloud computing has indeed gained critical mass within large enterprises, with more than 80 percent of respondents saying they are currently trialling public and private cloud computing deployments.

The F5 research was carried out in June and July and surveyed more than 250 IT managers in large enterprises throughout North America.

Half of the respondents said they have already deployed a public cloud computing implementation. And it seems that private cloud computing models are also gaining traction, with 45 percent of respondents currently using private clouds.

The acceptance of the cloud concept within the IT mindset was demonstrated by the remarkable figure that 66 percent of respondents said they have a dedicated budget for cloud computing initiatives.

"It's no surprise that large enterprises are attracted to cloud computing because of the promise of an agile, scalable IT infrastructure and reduced costs," said Jason Needham, director of product management at F5, in a statement.

"However, this survey shows that despite interest in the cloud, widespread enterprise adoption of cloud computing is contingent upon solving access, security, and performance concerns," he said.

"As organisations turn to the cloud to increase IT agility, it is important for them to understand the technical components of the cloud and how the cloud will affect the network before developing an implementation strategy," he added.

The survey also found that cloud computing is more than SaaS (Software as a Service), despite it being an important component of cloud computing. Respondents ranked SaaS behind Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) as the most important components of cloud computing.

The findings also showed that enterprises tend to employ a wide range of technologies in their cloud computing platforms. Access control was the top concern for people (90 percent), but network security and virtualisation was also named as key technologies.

F5 has also published a video on cloud computing.

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