SAP Tools to Move Applications to the Cloud

Michael Vizard
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The Impact of Cloud Computing

The primary driver for cloud computing adoption is shifting from costs to agility.

After being in business for almost 40 years, SAP has a lot of customers running SAP software inside their data centers. Many of the customers would like to move those applications to the cloud, but for many of them accomplishing that goal is a lot easier said than done.

To help customers make that transition, SAP is developing a series of cloud management tools, starting with an SAP NetWeaver Landscape Virtualization Management Software that moves SAP applications onto virtual machines. Initially, this software supports virtual machine technologies from VMware and IBM, but the company plans to add support for a full range of virtual machine platforms.

Speaking at the SAP Influencers Summit in Boston, Aiaz Kazi, vice president for SAP's NetWeaver platform marketing, says that SAP is also developing cloud management tools, codenamed Titanium and Xenon, which will help customers move and provision SAP applications on any cloud computing platform, including Amazon, and provide users with a self-service portal through which those applications can be accessed.

SAP is also working on creating a Virtual Appliance Factory, which will be used to create sets of pre-defined templates for creating instances of SAP applications for a cloud computing platform.

As elements of SAP's overall cloud computing strategy, these cloud management tools will be critical components of any effort to migrate millions of lines of SAP code to the cloud. Some customers will opt to deploy those applications on their own private clouds in data centers managed by them, while others will opt for data centers managed by SAP or some other third-party provider of cloud computing services. The degree and pace at which any of this will happen is still unknown. But one thing that is for certain is that it's not going to happen in a timely fashion without tools to help automate the process.

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