Gaining Control in a Crowded Cloud

Michael Vizard

There is no shortage of cloud computing options these days, which is also the major reason why many IT organizations are currently experiencing a loss of control. In the absence of a fully functioning private cloud within their own data centers, many IT organizations have been turning to third-party cloud service providers to either set up or manage a private cloud for them, while relying on low-cost, public cloud services for ancillary functions such as application development.

At some point, IT organizations are going to need to bring all those forms of cloud computing under a common management framework. To address that specific issue, Virtustream, a provider of a cloud computing service, this week announced that it’s making its xStream 2.0 software for managing clouds available to IT organizations that can now use it to manage internal private clouds, third-party private cloud services and public cloud services.

According to Simon Aspinall, chief marketing officer for Virtustream, the company will continue using xStream to manage its own managed cloud computing service. But by using xStream across multiple cloud computing platforms, IT organizations will be able to more dynamically shift application workloads across those clouds, says Aspinall.

In fact, Virtustream recently acquired Enomaly as part of an effort to relaunch a cloud exchange next year through which IT organizations can essentially make cloud service providers bid process workloads as long as they can invoke an open application programming interface that Virtustream will publish and maintain.

Aspinall acknowledges there is a lot work going on at the moment in terms of cloud management technologies, most notably in the form of OpenStack. But Aspinall says there is a world of difference between standing up a stack of technologies and actually delivering a framework that an IT organization can use. Aspinall says that Virtustream will no doubt incorporate OpenStack and other technologies that become more standardized over time. But right now IT organizations need a management framework that allows them to gain control of the cloud now before things get any worse than they already are.

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