Last month we received a ton of great responses for our Macbook contest give-away. (What? You don't know we give a Macbook to the best comments on a given topic each month? Go right now to this link and register and share your thoughts!)

But let's talk about our June contest, where we asked, "What are key considerations when looking at server infrastructure in cloud deployments?" We got some terrific responses, including these from our winner, jderekwilson, who said, "three categories: Translation, Transition, and Transformation. If you're just starting out and have the luxury of considerations absent of legacy, you can jump to the last step and start crying your tears of shear joy at the beauty of it all!"

Here are some gems from your thoughts. zubinwadia wrote that he wants to see "predictable and validated deployment. Virtual machine images are a great start, but I want the equivalent of 'Chef' combined with the collective intelligence of AWS' user community to curate the best packages and deployment scripts so that getting started is even easier."

Chad Fulton suggested: "The most important shift in considering server infrastructure for cloud deployments is in mindset rather than technology. Cloud providers are selling you computing as a resource, and so you should understand your cloud provider in the same way that you would a utility company or ISP."

Michael Abed gave some practical advice. "I would consider placing the database and log files on physically separate RAID groups. Also? placing log files on RAID-1+ rather than RAID-5."

Some other pithy advice came from jayroa, who said, "At its heart, the promise of server infrastructure ROI and business success is centered around the power and flexibility of your server infrastructure, including the productivity tools it allows you to bring to bear on your business needs.... Before investing, make sure that your solution is designed in a way that allows your employees to perform more revenue-producing tasks."

Don't forget about support, as Rob Cortez mentions in his comment. "The single reason I chose Rackspace over AWS and I'm very glad I did -- I need a number I can contact anytime and I need them ready and willing to help me out in an emergency... That's crucial. It's almost like having another person on your team."

Reader cas33 urges all to know and understand their existing physical resources that it takes to run their apps. "Too often customers make the switch to running their front-end systems in the cloud before taking into consideration what goes into making those systems run."

Finally, some words of wisdom from Tristan Grimaux, who says, "Make good solid bricks [that are] easy to manage, to move around and to replicate. ???You need a great alert and reporting system. Cloud is about resilience but having components failing silently will sink your boat. ... ??Don't go cheap. Cloud turns to vapor.?"