iOS 8 is here -- and it's all over your network

iOS 8 is here -- and it's all over your network

iOS 8 comes out today, creating the usual raft of low-level headaches that accompanies the roll-out of new software.

iOS 8 comes out today, creating the usual raft of IT headaches that accompanies the roll-out of new software.

Linked services look like they could pose problems, for a start -- Apple's own iCloud Drive doesn't work with pre-iOS 8 or OS X Yosemite devices, which means that items synched to the cloud using new iOS 8 devices can't be accessed on Mac laptops and desktops, given that Yosemite hasn't been officially released yet.

Dropbox, too, has suspended all automatic media backups over compatibility issues with iOS 8. That goes for non-iOS 8 users, as well, although the company said in an official blog post that a fix is being worked on in conjunction with Apple.

Another headache is the need for bandwidth to transmit the update to the millions and millions of upgrade-eligible iDevices around the world.

University of Iowa network engineer Neil Johnson said that the school anticipates heavy traffic during the launch.

"We added additional bandwidth between our campus wireless network and our campus wired network earlier this week," he told Network World. "That was the bottleneck for us when iOS 7 was rolled out last year."

Developer beta versions of iOS 8 weighed in at a little less than 2GB, and the official update is 1.1GB -- which can add up quickly across a large number of devices. Johnson said that Iowa's link between wired and wireless networks spiked by about 500MB when the update first launched at noon CDT.

It's important to note that iOS 8 includes a lot of features that should make it more enterprise-friendly than it already was -- broader developer access to TouchID offers more security options, integration across multiple devices will (eventually) be a boon to the road warrior, and Apple's containerized approach to app installs should allow IT shops to differentiate between personal and professional software on a given device.

The latter feature, especially, plays into what Good Technology product marketing director Nikfar Khaleeli said must be a central focus of coping with consumerization.

"Embracing mobile computing and BYOD strategies does not have to leave sensitive business information, arguably a company¹s most valuable asset, vulnerable to breach if a truly comprehensive approach to enterprise mobility management is followed," he said.

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