Hewlett-Packard is hoping that mutual self-interest will trump the internecine warfare between HP and Oracle over the latter company's decision to hire former HP CEO Mark Hurd.
HP is announcing a private cloud computing offering at the Oracle OpenWorld 2010 conference this week that combines Oracle application and middleware software and HP's recently launched Cloud Services Automation software with the HP BladeSystem Matrix server running Linux and HP-UX operating system software. As an integrated server that combines server, storage and network computing resources under a common management framework, HP is looking to bundle application software from a variety of software vendors with the HP BladeSystem Matrix platform to help IT organizations jumpstart their private cloud computing efforts.
According to Mike Crowsen, vice president of the Oracle alliance at HP, the basic idea is to give customers a turnkey approach to migrating to systems that have been specifically designed to support a private cloud computing deployment. HP is trying to counter similar offerings developed by Cisco around the Unified Computing System (UCS), and Crowsen says HP will partner with other software vendors to create other turnkey offerings.
Crowsen says the two companies have more than 140,000 customers in common. He expects that the long-standing relationship between the two companies combined with the need to support the mutual interests of their common customer base means the two companies will continue to cooperate at the field sales level for years.
That, of course, remains to be seen. But given the state of the economy, most IT organizations are taking an evolutionary approach to private cloud computing that usually involves working with their existing IT infrastructure. But a turnkey approach to private cloud computing allows customers to migrate to a fundamentally more efficient way to managing enterprise IT a lot faster; as opposed to trying to cobble together systems that were never really designed for this model of computing.
The only question will be whether the customers can afford the capital costs associated with making such a rapid migration.