Earlier this month, I had some fun posting a song about private cloud architects, today I’d like to back it up with some materials that may actually be useful.
HP and Microsoft have jointly defined a Departmental Private Cloud Reference Architecture based on best-in-class HP Converged Infrastructure and Microsoft Windows Server with Hyper-V and System Center. This site may be useful for those going who are closely aligned with Microsoft’s approach to cloud computing.
There is also other reference architecture and materials sites like:
- HP AppSystem for Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Parallel Data Warehouse
- HP AppSystems for SAP HANA
- HP AppSystem for Vertica
There are also a few free books at the HP Book Store, including:
Recently Gartner put out a press release saying Cloud and CRM will drive enterprise software spending in 2013 and 2014. I found this focus on CRM a bit confusing based on all the other demands on spending. One of the interesting areas is the use of private clouds. HP has some new hardware coming out soon that should be of interest to anyone interested in cloud hardware.
See if moonshot will be right for you. Many of the issues defined as tech trends, should be addressed more effectively and economically by the moonshot approach than traditional hardware.
Gartner had a post on The Five Things that Private Cloud is Not. They stated that Private Cloud is not:
- Just about cost reduction
- Only IaaS
- Always going to be private
This was a good list of things to keep in mind. I have to dispute the last one a bit though, since many times organizations as they get larger will move to a private cloud to keep costs down and have greater control over their SLAs. For the variable part of the workload, public cloud can be more effective though, since you may be able to structure the environment so you only pay for that variable portion.
I would add a few more that we discussed in a #convcloud twitter session the other day.
- Private clouds are not always the security answer – Organizations that use private cloud still have to address security concerns. It may be within the organizations firewall… But remember most security leaks are inside jobs.
- Private clouds are not always the best way to get started with cloud – They are definitely a way to get started, but many organizations do public cloud first and then as they understand their demand develop a private cloud.
- Private clouds don’t need SLAs – Just like any shared resources, there need to be rules and an understanding of how the environment is working and value is being generated. Metrics will serve a key role in the on-going care and feeding of a private cloud.
Are there things about private cloud that you believe the market is confused about?
No organization large enough to have a private cloud will likely have just HP servers in their environment, so diverse environment management is likely to be common requirement in the private cloud. Yet there don’t appear to be many products on the market that address diverse environments (Converged Cloud) well.
HP CloudSystem Matrix is available as a popular turnkey solution bundled with HP servers, but many don't realize that it is also available as HP CloudSystem Matrix software that can be used with non-HP systems, in existing environments.
As I think about the kind of management required as the automation concept moves out of IT and into business processes as a whole, a much better understanding of the integration needs of diverse environments will be required for these flexible approaches to burst out of IT. Cloud computing is just the IT implementation of a much larger automation trend.
Interop is usually thought of as more of a networking event, but this year almost all the keynotes… were cloud focused. The vendor exhibition area was probably 60% networking and 40% cloud focused.
Last night I was at an Interop gathering talking with a number of folks from Canada about cloud deployment. One of them used the computing is turning into a “utility” like the electric company analogy that I now avoid. Some people believe that organizations will stop having data centers and off the cuff say “we don’t generate our own power anymore – we just consume what the utilities provide”.
To this I say “Utilities provide 60Hz and 120 volts (or more, at least in the US) and if that doesn’t meet your needs, it is up to you to convert it into something else, e.g., DC.” That’s not exactly what we expect from computing environments -- at least once you look a bit deeper. There are numerous attributes that have different costs, there are licensing implications as well. Every project, business process or organization has their own unique requirements. Sure some of them can be aggregated together into a virtualized private cloud, but it will be quite a while before we see all the computing needs being met by a standard computing environment.
At the same time as computing is standardizing… the electric power generation is actually decentralizing (to a small extent) with solar panels and windmills. So they may be become more similar, just from two different directions. Power utilities are coming from being highly regulated and centralized and computing from a relatively unregulated and distributed direction.
In our discussions at Interop today we asked the crowd “How many people are looking at a way for cloud to cut costs?” – there were actually few hands that went up. When we asked “How many people are looking for it to increase flexibility?” Significantly more went up. That’s good, since that whole life cycle issue for cloud environments isn’t necessarily focused on cutting costs.