Storm Control

by Pablo Carlier.

Private Cloud as a Service »

Is the private cloud just a gateway drug for companies in their inevitable journey to the public cloud? You know, it is a rocky road for you, CIO:

  • You need the skills to deploy it.
  • You need the time to build it.
  • You need the infrastructure to run it.
  • You need to integrate it with the other cloud solutions you already have, even if you don’t know it.

But it allows you to keep control, enforcement and governance end-to-end in your operations. You don’t necessarily want to go public. 

Jesse Proudman from BlueBox makes some good points on what the private cloud really offers: not only the increased operational agility, but also an increased focus between IT teams within an organization. An example of this is the famous example of Jeff Bezos’ message of "build APIs or get fired", that ignited the AWS inception. As Kin Lane mentions in the aforelinked article:

He was asking every team to decouple, define what resources they had, and make them available through an API.  Every team within your company essential becomes a partner of the other.

The cloud is a way of working. A philosophy, not a tool. It can truly change an organization upside down. Amazon has made it super simple, super easy to extend some of these benefits to their AWS customers. Adoption of public cloud services has been massive among startups. Enterprise is another story, though.

They’re just not there yet.

Jesse summarizes four main benefits of going private cloud:

1. Data Sovereignty – Enterprises want to know and to control where corporate data rests.

2. Environment Control – We agree that governance and security becomes much easier to implement with a private cloud.

3. Cost Predictability – Enterprises need to be able to budget and forecast expenses. Private Clouds simplify that process.

4. Hybrid Capabilities – Private Cloud can be best utilized to build green field applications that integrate with existing IT workloads. Low latency interconnections from a hosted private cloud make this possible.

Hosted private clouds do not need to burst into public clouds to deliver what enterprises demand.

His view, and I concur, is that some private cloud solutions can provide these organizational, governance and operating benefits while also offering the architectural benefits that public clouds deliver. Hosted is one way. Managed is another.

Shifting CAPEX to OPEX. Scaling elastically. Time-to-market.

I believe that’s why Cisco is buying MetaCloud to power the InterCloud vision. To give enterprises the benefits of the cloud without the management angst

“The cheaper it is to do it in the cloud, the more difficult it is to make a business case to do an on-premises solution, especially a private cloud.”

Cloudpundit’s Lydia Leong on AWS 2Q14 and why the sky is not falling (via irq)

Lowering the price expands the addressable market, as well. The cheaper it is to do it in the cloud, the more difficult it is to make a business case to do an on-premises solution, especially a private cloud. 

Many of Gartner’s clients tell us that even if they have a financially viable case to build a private cloud right now, their costs will be essentially static over the amortization period of 3 to 5 years — versus their expectation that the major IaaS providers will drop prices 30% every year. Time-to-value for private cloud is generally 18 to 24 months, and it typically delivers a much more limited set of features, especially where developer enablement is concerned.

It’s tough for internal IT to compete, especially when the major IT vendors aren’t delivering software that allows IT to create equivalent capabilities at the speed of an AWS, Microsoft, or Google.

Keywords to watch here:

  • Time to value.
  • Feature set.

Keywords missing:

  • Customization.
  • Governance.

Traditional IT clearly needs to move faster and bolder to be able to compete in a new world where everything runs as a service, utility-like.

That said, I don’t see this as a black or white situation. It seems evident to me that a hybrid approach will be most suitable to most large enterprises. There is a steep learning curve for in-house solutions like OpenStack, though. And a clear skill gap between what many IT shops have today and what they need for this journey.

Is Private Cloud as a Service the solution?

A simple, comprehensive summary of what data analytics / database tool to use for each scenario. Simple. Nice. By @jessetanderson

A simple, comprehensive summary of what data analytics / database tool to use for each scenario. Simple. Nice. By @jessetanderson

“…a wearable plus TouchID is likely the most consumer-friendly two-factor authorization possible.”

– Ben Thompson predicting Watch and Pay.

Another example why I believe even a virtual-overlay based solution for the Cloud-Oriented-DC should not be hypervisor centric.
Software-defined data center is one thing. Software-defined ≠ Built-entirely-upon-and-for-VM-workloads. I see some twisted logic in some conceptions of what the SDDC is.
Hypervisor-based-overlay-only data center just addresses a small part of the problem. Containers, Hadoop, Nutanix, NAS…
I would not want to leave any of those out of my Cloud strategy as second-class citizens.

Another example why I believe even a virtual-overlay based solution for the Cloud-Oriented-DC should not be hypervisor centric.

Software-defined data center is one thing. Software-defined ≠ Built-entirely-upon-and-for-VM-workloads. I see some twisted logic in some conceptions of what the SDDC is.

Hypervisor-based-overlay-only data center just addresses a small part of the problem. Containers, Hadoop, Nutanix, NAS…

I would not want to leave any of those out of my Cloud strategy as second-class citizens.

Why the sky is not falling over Amazon Web Services »

Cloudpundit’s Lydia Leong on AWS 2Q14 and why the sky is not falling (via ira):

Amazon posted weaker 2Q 2014 results for Amazon Web Services, leading some to speculate about competitive pressures despite continued enormous growth in usage.

and

Lowering the price expands the addressable market, as well. The cheaper it is to do it in the cloud, the more difficult it is to make a business case to do an on-premises solution, especially a private cloud. 

Many of Gartner’s clients tell us that even if they have a financially viable case to build a private cloud right now, their costs will be essentially static over the amortization period of 3 to 5 years — versus their expectation that the major IaaS providers will drop prices 30% every year. Time-to-value for private cloud is generally 18 to 24 months, and it typically delivers a much more limited set of features, especially where developer enablement is concerned.

It’s tough for internal IT to compete, especially when the major IT vendors aren’t delivering software that allows IT to create equivalent capabilities at the speed of an AWS, Microsoft, or Google.

Keywords to follow here:

  • Time to value.
  • Feature set.

Keywords missing:

  • Customization.
  • Hybrid.

Traditional IT clearly needs to move faster and be bolder to be able to compete in a new world where everything runs as a service, utility-like. 

Startups can build themselves around what is available. To them, customization or hybrid don’t make any sense.

It seems evident to me that a hybrid approach will be the only viable option  to most large enterprises, where customization and hybrid are a must.

Same destination, but very different roads. That is how I see it.

This is why containers (LXC, Docker) are set to storm over the world the same way the Virtual Machine did ten years ago.
David Strauss, Pantheon’s CTO and Co-Founder, back in 2013:

Containers Now Offer the Same Features as VMS, but with Minimal Overhead
Compared to a virtual machine, the overhead of a container is disruptively low. They start so fast that many configurations can launch on-demand as requests come in, resulting in zero idle memory and CPU overhead. 

This is why containers (LXC, Docker) are set to storm over the world the same way the Virtual Machine did ten years ago.

David Strauss, Pantheon’s CTO and Co-Founder, back in 2013:

Containers Now Offer the Same Features as VMS, but with Minimal Overhead

Compared to a virtual machine, the overhead of a container is disruptively low. They start so fast that many configurations can launch on-demand as requests come in, resulting in zero idle memory and CPU overhead. 

The company starts valuing the great salesmen, because they’re the ones who can move the needle on revenues, not the product engineers and designers. So the salespeople end up running the company.

When the sales guys run the company, the product guys don’t matter as much, and a lot of them just turn off.

– Steve Jobs, via Ben Thompson.