Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, William Schmarzo

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog

@CloudExpo: Blog Feed Post

The Private Cloud Debate Is Building Up Steam, But Is It Worth Having?

The remaining Private versus Public question then is: where to start?

Slowly but steadily the debate in the blogosphere about private clouds is increasing. Now it is always good to see some debate, but is this a debate worth having? Will the cloud long term not be about other things than who owns a machine?

Under provocative titles like “Private cloud discredited, part 1”  and “Do We Really Need Private Clouds?”  the private cloud debate is building up steam. The first blog is actually called “part 1” because the author is sure there will be a part two, given the raging emotions and all the opinions being aired.

The second one is part of a very readable guest series by IT analyst avant la lettre Robin Bloor at Cloud Commons. Cloud Commons is a cloud consumer rating service community site, like consumersearch.com and epinions.com but for cloud products and services, that CA Technologies helped initiate.

Now it is always good to see debate, and I vividly remember when we all got exited some years ago about Open Systems (with Open roughly being defined as anything running on Unix versus anything that was not running on Unix- including mainframes, AS/400's, HP3000's, etc. etc.). To be honest , that debate was maybe as productive as a debate about private versus public clouds may turn out to be. In my view the most important thing that the cloud can bring is namely that cloud (finally) decouples the application from the underlying infrastructure. As a result it matters a lot less where it runs (private or public). In a comment on Robin’s “Do We Really Need Private Clouds?” blog Jonathan Davis, CTO of DNS Europe, introduces a good example of that principle. Using a cloud platform (Applogic* in this case) his company makes it possible that applications can be deployed transparently and instantly over grids of compute capacity (re. discussion of grids, see Robin’s earlier post in the mentioned series) regardless of whether these clouds are private (hosted or internal), public or a combination (hybrid).

Where to start
The remaining Private versus Public question then is: where to start. Do you start with less sensitive applications on a public cloud and then expand what you learned to core apps onto maybe a private cloud, or v.v. do you start with a more sensitive app on a private cloud and expand to public when you feel that is proven and secure enough for that application.

Surprisingly (at least to me) there was some very clear guidance given in the cloud scenario session at last month’s annual Gartner Symposium/ITxpo**. Basically a kind of “comply or explain” approach was suggested there. It basically suggested: first explore whether a job can be done with a public cloud (“comply”), and only if there are valid and severe reasons to not go public (“explain”) than consider private. I’m paraphrasing so check with your analyst for exact wording and/or check out the free videos recordings of this year’s symposium at gartnersymposiumondemand.com . Unfortunately the break-out sessions on cloud are not available for free there, but it does offer all plenary keynotes, all industry CEO interviews (Bennioff, Chambers, Ballmer, Dell) and … a recording of my session ;-).

During the symposium, Gartner also indicated that security concerns should be more seen as valid but temporary challenges to be addressed and overcome, rather than as a reason (or excuse) to discard public clouds. At last weeks Datacenter Summit one of Gartner’s lead analysts on cloud, Thomas Bittman, gave a slightly more nuanced view. Understandable as this wa sthe week of Thankgiving and the folks in the room were predominantly the guys running today’s private datacenters (Thanksgiving --> Turkeys :-) ). He highlighted some scenario’s where private clouds makes perfect sense (eg. stable, predictable loads). In his worthwhile and balanced session he also noted that the current emphasis on Infrastructure as a Service (where the Private versus Public debate mainly plays today) over Platform and Software as a Services comes from the fact that IaaS can run today’s existing applications and does not have to wait for a next generation of apps, as developing such new applications simply takes time.

A new generation of cloud applications

In my view this new generation applications will be very different from the applications we run today, which makes it even more important that these new generations of applications will no longer be tight to underlying infrastructures. New generations come with new applications, mainframes introduced OLTP, Mini’s or distributed systems (both open and proprietary) introduced departmental systems and later packaged applications like MRP and ERP and internet web systems introduced the age of e-commerce, where we started buying books and gadgets online and doing our banking on-line (remember when everything was called e-something). So “re-hosting" our existing apps to (either private or public) clouds is only a very small part of the long term cloud story. Not that next year, as I will address in my upcoming #IT2011 predictions, won’t be a very lucrative year for many vendors - including the one I work for - helping organizations move their existing applications to (hosted or internal) private clouds. Not to mention that 2011 is likely to be the year of the IaaS KillerApp TestDev-clouds, that make test/dev machines (a whopping 70% of the average IT organization’s machine park) available in a much more flexible, economical and ecological way. My college Marv Waschke wrote about this last week as a perfect way to gain experience with private and public cloud scenario’s

But the big long term story in my view is that cloud will be ideal for a generation of new applications. Applications that allow organizations to collaborate with other organizations – so not the now much talked about in-company twitter and facebook clones that enable people to waste as much time at the office as they do at home. Through these new collaboration applications, organizations can take business processes that were traditionally done in house and source them as “as a service”. These processes can vary from bill collecting, invoicing, physical distribution, repair handling and HR to full manufacturing or product design. Having companies be able to specialize and offer these services to many organizations will enable them to achieve massive economies of scale. Note that many of these services which will be largely or completely information/software based. An example: Imagine the efficiencies of one company handling repairs for several large mobile phone manufacturers versus each company having to arrange their repairs themselves. Most phone manufacturers sell through the same resellers, use the same repair centers, source form the same Chinese factories, etc. etc. Hooking these up ones to a central platform used by multiple players can give an enormous platform effect. An early European player in the area is eBuilder.com (who BTW also run a cloud academy, but specific about these business aspects which they call “Cloud Processes for the Value Network”. At their site their head of product marketing also shares a handy list of 10 essential elements to create and run such a next generation cloud service). These types of new generation cloud applications will render efficiencies far beyond any pure IT savings or efficiencies imaginable (see also my earlier entry re. Gitex)

Now you may say that companies have started this move towards specialization and outsourcing of processes already some years ago. And you’re right, but so far they did so often despite of support in IT applications. Thanks to the cloud, IT can now become the big promoter, enabler and catalyst for this. In fact, I came across the scenario of "repair handling as a service" over a decade ago, while introducing XML for a previous employer. But back then the idea of bringing crucial functions outside the firewall and outside the realm of internal IT was just a bit too revolutionary. The fast growing acceptance of cloud computing as a model (often even more on the business side than on the IT side) is rapidly changing this. And to be honest, public cloud may clearly have an advantage over private cloud for such public services, as it is already located outside single companies proverbial firewalls.

PS many links in this one, if you read only one, make it Robin Bloor’s series at Cloud Commons, his havemacwillblog was one of the first IT blogs and this new series shows that experience does count.

*Disclosure: The cloud platform Applogic is a platform by 3Tera, now part of CA Technologies, my employer. DNS Europe spoke at the invitation of CA about their experiences with Applogic at VM World in Copenhagen.

**CA Technologies is a premier sponsor of Gartner's Symposium/ITxpo and Datacenter Summit.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Gregor Petri

Gregor Petri is a regular expert or keynote speaker at industry events throughout Europe and wrote the cloud primer “Shedding Light on Cloud Computing”. He was also a columnist at ITSM Portal, contributing author to the Dutch “Over Cloud Computing” book, member of the Computable expert panel and his LeanITmanager blog is syndicated across many sites worldwide. Gregor was named by Cloud Computing Journal as one of The Top 100 Bloggers on Cloud Computing.

Follow him on Twitter @GregorPetri or read his blog at blog.gregorpetri.com

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
"We were founded in 2003 and the way we were founded was about good backup and good disaster recovery for our clients, and for the last 20 years we've been pretty consistent with that," noted Marc Malafronte, Territory Manager at StorageCraft, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are an IT services solution provider and we sell software to support those solutions. Our focus and key areas are around security, enterprise monitoring, and continuous delivery optimization," noted John Balsavage, President of A&I Solutions, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"DivvyCloud as a company set out to help customers automate solutions to the most common cloud problems," noted Jeremy Snyder, VP of Business Development at DivvyCloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We want to show that our solution is far less expensive with a much better total cost of ownership so we announced several key features. One is called geo-distributed erasure coding, another is support for KVM and we introduced a new capability called Multi-Part," explained Tim Desai, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Hitachi Data Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
There is a huge demand for responsive, real-time mobile and web experiences, but current architectural patterns do not easily accommodate applications that respond to events in real time. Common solutions using message queues or HTTP long-polling quickly lead to resiliency, scalability and development velocity challenges. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ryland Degnan, a Senior Software Engineer on the Netflix Edge Platform team, will discuss how by leveraging a reactive stream-based protocol,...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Calligo, an innovative cloud service provider offering mid-sized companies the highest levels of data privacy and security, has been named "Bronze Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Calligo offers unparalleled application performance guarantees, commercial flexibility and a personalised support service from its globally located cloud plat...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to w...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devic...
"The Striim platform is a full end-to-end streaming integration and analytics platform that is middleware that covers a lot of different use cases," explained Steve Wilkes, Founder and CTO at Striim, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"With Digital Experience Monitoring what used to be a simple visit to a web page has exploded into app on phones, data from social media feeds, competitive benchmarking - these are all components that are only available because of some type of digital asset," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Me...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DXWorldExpo has been named “Global Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation is the key issue driving the global enterprise IT business. Digital Transformation is most prominent among Global 2000 enterprises and government institutions.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Datera, that offers a radically new data management architecture, has been named "Exhibitor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Datera is transforming the traditional datacenter model through modern cloud simplicity. The technology industry is at another major inflection point. The rise of mobile, the Internet of Things, data storage and Big...
Kubernetes is an open source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Kubernetes was originally built by Google, leveraging years of experience with managing container workloads, and is now a Cloud Native Compute Foundation (CNCF) project. Kubernetes has been widely adopted by the community, supported on all major public and private cloud providers, and is gaining rapid adoption in enterprises. However, Kubernetes may seem intimidating and complex ...
"Outscale was founded in 2010, is based in France, is a strategic partner to Dassault Systémes and has done quite a bit of work with divisions of Dassault," explained Jackie Funk, Digital Marketing exec at Outscale, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We focus on SAP workloads because they are among the most powerful but somewhat challenging workloads out there to take into public cloud," explained Swen Conrad, CEO of Ocean9, Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We are still a relatively small software house and we are focusing on certain industries like FinTech, med tech, energy and utilities. We help our customers with their digital transformation," noted Piotr Stawinski, Founder and CEO of EARP Integration, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"I think DevOps is now a rambunctious teenager – it’s starting to get a mind of its own, wanting to get its own things but it still needs some adult supervision," explained Thomas Hooker, VP of marketing at CollabNet, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We've been engaging with a lot of customers including Panasonic, we've been involved with Cisco and now we're working with the U.S. government - the Department of Homeland Security," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"We're here to tell the world about our cloud-scale infrastructure that we have at Juniper combined with the world-class security that we put into the cloud," explained Lisa Guess, VP of Systems Engineering at Juniper Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.