Some interesting news about VMWare was made public on Sunday 26th August – the day before VMWorld – that VMware joins OpenStack. This appears to be driven largely by the acquisition of Nicira – and the role that Nicira currently plays in the implementation of virtual networking in OpenStack.
In addition to PaaS there is a class of vendors who provide external services to PaaS through “marketplaces” that the vendor sets up. We refer to these generically as Application Services as a Service (ASaaS). The stakes are potentially huge – the PaaS takes over from the Operating System as the dominant factor in the purchasing decision for server-side technology. We’re not saying it definitely will happen, but it might.
At this point in the evolution of PaaS, we are starting to see an enormous diversity of innovation around CloudFoundry, as multiple vendors come to market with differentiated PaaS offerings. Uhuru Software, based in Seattle, is entering its second Beta phase with the Uhuru PaaS, with a major focus on .NET support.
Microsoft is offering public cloud, service provider, and on-premise versions of Azure. Will VMware follow suite with a vSphere based Public Cloud Computing offering?
As mentioned in a number of posts, there is a clear trend away from Platform-specific PaaS (where you write your application to the platform) and Language-Specific PaaS (which provide support to one or possibly a couple of languages) to Universal PaaS, which is capable of supporting any language and any platform. There’s a little bit of a gray area, but we would include ActiveState Stackato, AppFog, dotCloud, GigaSpaces Cloudify, Red Hat OpenShift, Salesforce Heroku, Uhuru Software AppCloud and VMWare CloudFoundry in this category. These vendors differentiate themselves by providing a broad range of Application Services or Application Lifecycle Services.
We recently wrote about Microsoft’s Three Pronged Windows Azure Strategy – particularly with reference to the Service Provider offering. I’ve now had a certain amount of time to reflect on the announcement and try and work out what is going on and it doesn’t seem to constitute a wholehearted strategy to put resellers on a level playing field with Microsoft.