In cloud computing there are several commentators who do not believe private clouds are really clouds. I thought we had that argument long ago and decided that if customers wanted private clouds as well as public clouds (most large customers use or plan to use both) then a market for both would, of course, exist.
However, conflicting points of view still exist.
So I read with some dismay a post by the very smart commentator on cloud computing Phil Wainewright. (He and go back into the pre-cloud ASP era ascolleagues). Wainewright took a
post from an IBM IT architect (which focused on private cloud computing) and decided this meant that large vendors didn’t understand cloud computing. Wainewright said, “Sadly, this is typical of the ill-informed conventional wisdom you’ll hear from the likes of IBM, HP, Oracle and most
parts of Microsoft, Accenture, Deloitte and the rest when discussing cloud computing.”
I’d say that sadly this IBM’s employee’s post was based on his own work and opinions and did
not at all represent what IBM is up to.
I’ve just attended several IBM customer events which were about cloud, I’ve reread IBM’s
cloud web site, and I’ve interviewed IBM executive Fausto Bernardini, Director, Cloud Services Enablement at IBM Global Technology Services, about IBM’s latest cloud strategies. So I thought I might add some additional useful information.
There are, of course, customers and vendors who are interested in private clouds. For some
workloads, (which is how IBM looks at finding solutions for enterprise customers) IBM might recommend a private cloud. For others, they would suggest a public cloud. Many customers are now headed in the direction of employing both, with linkages between them.
IBM’s large enterprise customers employ private clouds when they want the advantages of virtualization, automation, and self-service, but require the security of staying inside their own boundaries. They may also prefer keeping data and process where they are rather than exposing themselves to the delays of moving large volumes of data.
IBM does not assume that cloud deployments are all about duplicating data centers. In fact, they
are often part of a discussion about how to implement new applications or workloads, where the cloud – private or public – represents another approach to supporting new or additional work at lower cost or with more flexibility.
IBM Executive Fausto Bernardini says deciding what to move and when to move it is largely a matter of economics and timing. “Clients are at a different place in their IT life cycle,” he said. Enterprises who have recently made large investments in hardware or software may want to
amortize those investments before moving to the cloud. Very old investments may not be worth moving (which can require substantial rewriting), unless they will continue to be used for a long time into the future.
The cloud, Bernardini says, must be easier to use than anything else or clients will be disappointed.
Today, there are thousands of private clouds in use (some of them community clouds, shared among hundreds or thousands of users). There are also thousands of public clouds (you can hear reports of them on-line at LinkedIn’s Uhuru, Cloud Computing, and SaaS sites) used by (we’d guess) millions of users.
This is a game for many vendors and nearly every user.
Yesterday Oracle announced its new theory of cloud computing and this week HP has made many
cloud announcements. I’m analyzing them (lots to think about) and I’ll write about them in another blog post soon, but the main take-away is that both private and public cloud computing are thriving and the next step is to make it easy to move between them.