As cloud computing evolves, it's becoming clear that there will be just as much, if not more, incompatibility in the cloud as in on-premise applications today.
Cloud computing standards that might address these issues are both limited in scope and far from reality, making it apparent that there will be a major requirement for brokering services in the cloud.
One company that is positioning itself to provide those services is Unisys, which is building broker capabilities into its Converged Remote Infrastructure Management (CRIM) software, designed to provide a layer of management software that spans both public and private cloud computing platforms.
According to Brian Ott, Unisys vice president of global service, the broker service will manage all the APIs and service-oriented architecture (SOA) implementations that make up various cloud computing platforms. It will give customers the higher level of abstraction they will need to create hybrid cloud computing services that will span multiple internal and external cloud computing platforms.
Ott says that rather than waiting for the big vendors to come up with interoperability specifications for cloud computing that will be of limited scope, customers should define their own cloud computing standards by embracing management frameworks that sit above the virtual and physical servers that cloud computing provider rely on. By doing so, he said, customers will be able to maintain control over the greatly expanded enterprise IT infrastructure.
Unisys is not the first vendor to broach the concept of a cloud computing broker. But as interest in cloud computing grows, it's only a matter of time before customers need to broker application deployments across disparate sets of cloud computing infrastructure. The only question is whether they will try an bolt that layer of cloud computing management software on after the fact or design an internal cloud computing framework standard today that all providers should comply with if they really want your business.