Accelerating the Enterprise Adoption of Public Storage Clouds
Seven key attributes public storage cloud must possess to earn the confidence of enterprises.
While there has been a lot of progress in the development of cloud storage standards, most notably in the form of a reference architecture for the Cloud Data Management Interface (CDMI) standard created by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), not enough IT organizations as of yet are specifying that cloud service providers need to be committed to the standard in order to gain their business.
Wayne Adams, chairman of SNIA and a senior technologist with the office of the CTO at EMC, says we've reached a chicken-and-egg point when it comes to cloud storage standards. Not enough customers are aware of the potential lock-in issues associated with cloud storage. Until that happens, it's going to be hard to prod cloud service providers to be more aggressive about implementing a CDMI standard that many of them view as being economically problematic. On the one hand, open standards could increase the size of the market. But on the other hand, cloud service providers worry that CDMI would make it easy for customers to switch vendors, which ultimately could serve as a catalyst for driving cloud storage pricing lower.
Obviously, customers have a vested interest in CDMI. Adams says SNIA is hoping more customers will start insisting that cloud storage providers at least make a commitment to the standard in writing. As more customers begin to require that commitment, the timetable for which CDMI support will be added to cloud storage services should become considerably shorter.
In general, Adams says there's never been more cooperation among the various bodies that are collectively defining standards for cloud computing. What needs to happen now is for customers to start taking a more strategic view of the cloud that starts with where do they want to be three years from now and then works backwards.
Put into that context, chances are that the ability to easily move data from one cloud service provider to another is going to be something IT organizations are going to want to do a lot sooner than later.