Finding practical applications for cloud computing, for both public and public, has been the concern of IT vendors; while sellers are still absorb in re-discussing the meaning and business importance for cloud computing.
Several IT giants held a panel at Interop to discuss private cloud. Representatives from Novell, IBM, NEC and Intel send off confusing mixed messages. According to John Stetic, VP of product management at Novell, private cloud is essentially a second step after virtualization and, based mainly on automation and ease of delivery to users. For Rich Lechner, VP marketing for IBM’s cloud, said it is ideal for delivering desktop information services.
“We have 100,000 in sales and marketing using business analytics in our private cloud,” Lechner said. He added that IBM also had 15,000 to 20,000 developers in India and China who were using a “more traditional” cloud model for virtual machines and test and development.
Since 2009, NIST defines cloud computing as an online self-service pay-as-you-go access to computing power and computer services. The group agreed that in order to achieve the same flexibility and capabilities demonstrated by the public cloud providers like Amazon, installing tools and platforms in the data center is necessary, including the mechanisms for chargeback and accounting. But some users resent this idea. IT professionals in the audience voiced out their two cents to the panel.
Christian Reilly, IT architect with a large multinational and considers his firm to have built a private cloud, informs the panel, “If anyone in the room is considering a cloud project and starting with charging mechanisms, don’t do it. It’ll fail and you’ll go down all the [wrong] rabbit holes, so that’s a piece of free advice.” He emphasizes on the importance of delivering the entire application stacks and services instead of focusing on the automation infrastructure.
Randy Bias, CEO of Cloudscaling, states that there should be specific, actionable uses for cloud computing techniques, for it is not enough to want technology. He complained that expecting companies to emulate Google or Amazon is unrealistic, because these companies’ data center has a completely different set of purposes and needs than that of a technology provider.
Novell’s Stetic responded by sharing the need to take a long view; adding that like virtualization, the clouds would be adopted gradually as users get to discover that it could actually be more efficient operationally. He added that companies like Google and Facebook provided a “leading edge.”
In spite of the mixed reactions, everyone agrees that the cloud is here to stay and that businesses are turning it to various forms. It had been clear that the hybrid approach to cloud computing are of most interest for enterprises, selecting from public hosted cloud services where suitable, and revamping for private cloud-style operations over time.
“The reality is we’re going to be hybrid cloud,” said Dot Davis. She said it is all about finding and implementing the suitable solution for a problem.