Every public cloud vendor looks longingly at all of the virtualized workloads running in VMware based data centers owned by enterprises worldwide, and says, “if only we could migrate those workloads to our cloud”. Of course this dream on the part of all of the public cloud vendors is VMware’s nightmare. Now GoGrid has announced a partnership with Racemi that allows customers to migrate their workloads from any physical or virtual server platform to the GoGrid cloud.
Details of the GoGrid and Racemi Announcement
You can read the Racemi press release on the partnership with GoGrid here.
You can go to the getting started page at GoGrid here.
Implications of the GoGrid and Racemi Announcement
Every public cloud computing vendor would like to make it as easy as possible for customers to migrate workloads into their clouds. Now the GoGrid has bundled migration via the Racemi CloudPath service into its core offering, other cloud vendors are going to have to follow suit. This will rapidly become like online banking, where once one bank offered it for free, every bank had to offer it for free in order to compete. This is clearly a good thing for the public cloud vendors, a good thing for customers who want to be able to move workloads to public clouds at minimum cost and hassle, and a great thing for Racemi (who gets paid for people using their service without having to actually sell anything to the end customer).
If we extrapolate from a sample size of one (always a dangerous thing to do), then it is easy to envision a world where public cloud vendors like Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and RackSpace all bundle the Racemi service for onboarding. If this occurs it will knock down one of the major barriers to the migration of workloads to public clouds which is the cost and the time required to do these migrations manually.
Now what is VMware likely to do? VMware recently announced its new hybrid cloud initiative. Clearly the intent of that initiative is to make it easy for customers who want to migrate VMware workloads from internal data centers to clouds run by VMware partners. But in the light of the onboarding arms race discussed above, all this will do is allow VMware to capture some portion of the workloads as they leave the internal data centers. For VMware, the real win is capturing the development, test and pilot workloads that get started in public clouds and that customers then want to bring back into the internal environment so that they can be run in a high performance and secure environment. For this to happen, then VMware would have to offer onboarding from various other public clouds to its hybrid clouds as a feature of its hybrid clouds.
The arms race to make it easy for one cloud vendor to onboard workloads from another vendor has been started by GoGrid and Racemi. This will likely lead to a world where it is easy to move workloads around between private clouds and public clouds of various types. If this happens then we are headed towards a world where execution environments for applications will compete on a limited set of dimensions like application response time, required throughput, cost, and required security level. If and when this occurs, then in fact IT will have become “a service”.