Information technology infrastructure is basically defined in broad terms as a collection of computer hardware and software components which are the basis of an IT system; typically hardware, but also different network and software components. In other words, this is the backbone of the entire IT system. This is the place where networks, servers, workstations, laptops, etc. connect to one another and to the IT infrastructure.
Information technology infrastructure enables people, businesses, and organizations to exchange information and interact with each other electronically. This happens every day in classrooms, in the office, and in the home – everyone is participating in an electronic age! The information systems infrastructure enables the exchange of files, documents, records, and communications. The information systems infrastructure also enables people to process information and store it electronically.
Information technology infrastructure has changed dramatically since the onset of the Information Age. In fact, many believe that the most significant innovation in information technology infrastructure came about in the mid-90s with the development of the Information Technology Information Management System (ITIMS). Information technology information management system (ITIMS) is a desktop-based, server-based application that provides support for information technology infrastructure management. This system software includes service layer applications, which perform key activities such as service dispatching, client response management, application performance management (APM), and database management.
Since then there have been a variety of different developments in ITIMS. One such development is the deployment of information technology infrastructure as private or virtualized resources. Some private citizens, such as Canadian telecommunications company Astralora, have taken the initiative to deploy private citizens’ hardware in their own countries. In these cases, the hardware is predominantly computer hardware. However, some companies, such as telecommunications giant Nortel, have chosen to deploy equipment belonging to the private sector.
One type of information technology infrastructure commonly used in the private sector is the application program interface (API). These are devices such as network-attached storage (NAS), computer networking devices such as card readers and printers, and digital electronic devices such as printers and televisions hooked to a local area network (LAN). Application program interfaces (APIs) control the manner in which information is presented to other applications. Some of the most common APIs used in the private sector are network interface cards, computer network adapters, network switches, digital signal encoders/decoders, and wireless access points. As a result, APIs provide the means through which information is presented to external applications.
Cloud infrastructure has emerged as another popular ITI Infrastructure Management approach. Cloud infrastructure consists of a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform and an application programming interface (API). The advantage of using a SaaS model for IT infrastructure management is that users do not need to possess the hardware to run their programs. Instead, the company provides both the hardware and software on an indemnified basis. In addition, Cloud IT systems allow for the automatic provisioning of new staff as required, without the need for technical support staff to oversee the process.