Harris Trusted Cloud – Closing the Gap

On the 4/7/2011 Virtualization Security Podcast, we were joined by Wyatt Starnes of Harris Corporation. Wyatt is the Vice President of Advanced Concepts of Cyber Integrated Solutions at Harris. What this means, is that Wyatt is one of the key folks of the Harris Trusted Cloud initiative. Trust is a funny word, and we have written about that in the past.


Figure 1: Trust Chain of Integrity

Harris’ approach is unique in that they are attempting to ensure integrity of all components of the cloud down to the code level, not just the network with their target being the hosted private cloud and NOT the secure multi-tenant public cloud.

Granted their approach could be used for a Secure Multi-Tenant Public Cloud, and I feel will be required for such a cloud to exist. So what is their approach? It all starts with a company Harris bought a while back: SignaCert which is a different approach to what Tripwire does today (as Wyatt Starnes was an original founder of Tripwire). SignaCert has an ever growing database of software signatures. The software signature gathering component and process becomes part of the supply chain for all components into the Harris Trusted Cloud.  These components include signatures for routers, switches, operating systems, and applications which are generated as close to the software release process as possible. Continue reading Harris Trusted Cloud – Closing the Gap

Podio Released. Does the social work platform herald the beginning-of-the-end of desktops?

After two years in development, the latest workplace collaboration service, Podio, was stood up to be counted at the end of March. Podio is focused on improving execution and collaboration for  business processes, knowledge and projects. With Podio, business teams can define their own customizable work spaces: without external programming support.

Why is this important? There is much discussion on improving desktop management: and typically the driver is “to reduce cost”. This involves looking to ease deployment; introduce user personalisation and rights control; considering application virtualisation. The simple fact is, if you want to control your desktop management costs, you introduce better management: you make an unmanaged device, a managed one. However, when tightly defining a desktop workspace and controlling how it is configured (to reduce costs) it often prevents users from accessing their data in ways that they need. IT can become a barrier, not an enabler. Continue reading Podio Released. Does the social work platform herald the beginning-of-the-end of desktops?

The Progress of the Cisco UCS Platform

It has been just over two years that the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) was announced and released to the world. I wanted to give my feedback on the progress of the platform and how it is fitting into the Cloud Computing space.

When Cisco announced their Unified Computing Platform a couple of years ago, their thinking was not to just design and get into the server hardware business, Cisco’s goal was to and become the heart of the datacenter itself. This was a big move by Cisco considering, that they had a very good working relationship and partnership with HP at least until the announcement that Cisco was getting into the server business. Continue reading The Progress of the Cisco UCS Platform

Microsoft SCOM as a complete Management Solution for a VMware Environment

In “Using Microsoft SCOM to Manage the Performance of Virtualized Applications on vSphere“, we discussed how using the BlueStripe FactFinder Management Pack for SCOM, it was possible to get detailed application topology views along with end-to-end and hop-by-hop applications response time in the same management system a proven enterprise solution for managing physical and virtual windows servers (specifically Microsoft SCOM). Continue reading Microsoft SCOM as a complete Management Solution for a VMware Environment

Acquisitions by VMware and RSA Changing the Landscape

There were two announcements over the last few days that struck me as quite important to the virtualization community. While some may question this statement, the long reaching effects of these purchases will impact virtualization and cloud computing in not so distant future. In fact, these purchases could add a whole new layer to vSphere as we know it today. Which for VMware is a good thing. They need to continue to innovate to stay ahead of the pack. The purchases I talk about are:

Wizard to Unlock SuSE from Microsoft patent Dungeon

Last Fall we all got quite excited here at the Virtualization Practice about the fate of SUSE, the commercial Linux Distribution, second in market share by value to Red Hat. SuSE is owned by Novell and the acquisition of Novell by Attachmate was announced on November 22nd for around $2.2bn.  We noted that SUSE might end up as a standalone entity for subsequent sale to a third party, possibly VMware.

It’s now April, and since these things usually take 3 months and the deal hasn’t closed, clearly something has got in the way.  Last week we started to see the way the deal could be unlocked. Continue reading Wizard to Unlock SuSE from Microsoft patent Dungeon