Building and operating a private cloud is a complex undertaking. Most cloud platforms are designed to play well with thousands of physical servers. This is great for public cloud providers and extremely large enterprise organizations. However, smaller organizations that need a cloud built from tens of physical servers can find these platforms challenging. I’ve written about the possibility that some of these customers might get what they want without a cloud platform. But what if a cloud platform were easy to deploy? If you cloud deploy an OpenStack cloud in one day, would that help? This is one target for the Intel Cloud for All program.
SDDC & Hybrid Cloud
Cloud computing has evolved from focusing only on how to construct, secure, manage, monitor, and utilize IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS clouds. As the paradigm matures, it is moving from a pure resource management paradigm to a data and resource management paradigm. (Read More)
SDDC is the next evolution in on-site data center technology. It has taken the knowledge gained from the server virtualization revolution and blended it with software-defined storage and networking to create a data center defined and managed by software running on invisible hardware.
Hybrid Cloud covers the technologies and operational processes, both technical and business, for deploying, consuming, and utilizing this paradigm.
Major areas of focus include barriers to adoption; progress on the part of vendors in removing those barriers; where the lines of responsibility are drawn between the cloud vendor and the customer for IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, and hybrid clouds; and management tools that are essential to deploying and managing the cloud, ensuring its security and the performance of applications.
As we move through the year, there are often monthly and quarterly upgrade cycles to our virtual and cloud environments. These are caused by security issues, natural upgrades to hardware, software, or even application updates. Application updates are now continuous, using continuous integration and deployment strategies, while hardware and other upgrades come more slowly. Cloud upgrades can be incredibly impactful, as all subsystems need to be restarted. Yet, there is a cycle to this. There is need to control what is happening, and a need to not break compliance, security, data protection, or other policies.
As we have stated before on The Virtualization Practice, Oracle has woken up to the cloud in a very large way. Acquisitions such as Ravello Systems, StackEngine, and Datalogix have the potential to turn this leviathan into a dominant cloud player.
Oracle has started to move from a position of catch-up, though acquisitions, into an active development phase. Recently, CEO Safra Catz met with India’s Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, to announce a series of investments and continued expansion into India. As one of these investments, Oracle opened an incubation center, the Oracle Startup Cloud Accelerator, on April 8 in Bengaluru. The center was inaugurated by President of Product Development Thomas Kurian. The company has already stated that several more centers will be launched later in Chennai, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Noida, Pune, Trivandrum, and Vijayawada. Oracle’s Sanket Atal, group vice president of development, will lead the initiative.
A few days ago, Stevie Chambers tweeted about the evolution from mainframe to container: “Why is it a surprise that VMs will decline as things miniaturise? Mainframes → Intel → VMs → Containers, etc. Normal, I’d say.” By “Intel” here, I’m going to take Stevie to mean “rackmount servers.” I’m also going to assume that by “decline” he meant “decline in importance, or focus” rather than decline in raw numbers of units sold. It would be easy to argue that there have been fewer rackmount servers sold in the last few years than would have been the case without virtualization, due to the consolidation of servers onto fewer, more powerful boxes. It’s also arguable that virtualization has brought us options that would simply be unavailable without it and have led to more volume of sales. Either way, Intel’s profits seem to be doing ok.
How much private cloud do you really need? A private cloud is all about the IT department getting out of the way of its internal customers, enabling business units and individual developers to provision their own VMs and get on with doing their jobs. But building and operating a private cloud is a complex, and therefore expensive, task. There needs to be a large payoff before there is a real business benefit. Some businesses don’t really need a private cloud platform. Often, their business processes will prevent real self-service on their private cloud. For these organizations, there may be simpler ways to achieve their desired business outcomes.
The WLAN, or wireless LAN, sector is pretty hot at the moment, as user endpoints break free from their previously wired existence. A wireless LAN links devices together over a spread-spectrum or OFDM (orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing) network within a limited area: your home, school, or office building, for example. From their humble beginnings, when they were not very stable, WLANs have become a staple of our always-on lifestyle. We now have connected cities, in which you can walk from one end to the other and always be connected to a Wi-Fi link.