Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Kevin Jackson, Sanjay Zalavadia

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Agile Computing, Cloud Security, @BigDataExpo, SDN Journal

@CloudExpo: Article

The Cloud's Next Killer Apps

Hybrid cloud will drive increased app agility, protection and scalability

The public cloud has been promoted as a low cost alternative to physical data center infrastructure, mostly to small and medium-sized businesses. That has driven the creation of a robust category of cloud migration services which has emerged as these smaller businesses have made considerable investments in moving their apps from colocation and data center environments into public clouds.

Enterprises, however, have been notably slower to invest in public cloud and cloud migration, at least in proportion to their overall IT budgets.  There are many reasons for the slower enterprise adoption of public loud (IaaS) and they have been discussed extensively. I think what is missing is a more robust discussion of the next killer apps for the cloud; the enterprise game changers. ­­

I think the new cloud killer apps for enterprises will leverage cloud-integrated data centers (or true hybrid cloud adoption), and will strategically transform IT operating models. Those killer apps will include cloud-enabled agility, protection and scalability.

Ø Cloud-Integrated Agility (Strategic Agility)
VMware introduced virtualization-enabled x86 agility in devtest and then production environments as a way to increase data center and hardware efficiency and to reduce growing application/server management costs.  Perhaps their cultural influence on IT has been even more powerful than their impressive growth in revenues. They, in fact, likely set the stage for an unprecedented IT cultural revolution simply by decoupling the lock-in between OS and apps and hardware. That decoupling ultimately became the software-defined data center, and proved how agility could drive data center transformation.

VMware in recent years has perhaps had as much impact on the evolution of IT as IBM when it introduced mainframe timesharing. Yet the hybrid cloud model it delivers today is really the equivalent of a two car garage (with perhaps a Tesla and a Mercedes) rather than a single unified environment (true hybrid) environment.  With recent acquisitions, VMware is no doubt on the way to delivering a true hybrid architecture.

Recent comments, however, seem to indicate that VMware is still thinking the private cloud is a hybrid cloud; for example, see this blog by Forrester's James Staten: VMware and the innovators dilemma.

Private cloud, however, is tactical agility. Cloud-integrated agility is the ability to run apps and services seamlessly across data centers and clouds, with enterprise-grade services and controls and without lock-in.  It is strategic agility.  Think of the cloud-integrated data center as a natural evolution of the software-defined data center.

Cloud-integrated agility is strategic agility.  It enables unprecedented pre-production AND production infrastructure flexibility with enterprise-grade services and controls.  The ability to create and tear down apps and services and move them between data centers, pre-production and production environments and multiple cloud providers or zones is a killer app. It offers the ultimate decoupling of the application and services from any specific premise or cloud. It can do for entire clouds and zones what virtualization has done for x86 servers.

DevTest Agility
The public cloud has emerged as an excellent devtest (or cloud devtest) environment, yet the hybrid cloud offers even more agility and the promise of production-grade emulation of the environment.  Apps and services can be tested in a true representation of the production environment, versus a close reproduction. They can also be more easily moved into production.

Hybrid cloud operating models will enjoy the advantage of strategic agility across pre-production and production environments, a new inflection point for IT and development productivity.

Ø Cloud-Integrated Protection (Continuous Protection)
Building out duplicate data center and colocation environments (for potential or even rare use) has a very weak business case, especially in comparison to investments in innovation, security or scalability. As CIOs are increasingly reporting to CFOs, traditional facility-bound disaster recovery and business continuity solutions are under increased scrutiny. The rise of the "pay as you go" cloud model has attracted new interest in leveraging the cloud for failover protection instead of maintaining and updating redundant physical infrastructures and even facilities.

Unfortunately public cloud providers have not been adept at addressing these needs and the services that would be typically required for ensuring uptime. High profile outages, even with marquee customers, has lowered cloud availability expectations; and the inability for a customer to easily move from one zone to another has resulted in a lack of attractive DR and failover/continuity solutions in public clouds, despite the obvious economy.

Today the public cloud is not an enterprise-grade solution for continuous application protection. It is an isolated environment with limited integration with the data center and other zones/clouds. That "take it or leave it" isolation with resultant lock-in restricts the continuity potential of the public cloud.

The hybrid cloud (or cloud-integrated data center) has inherent strengths which compensate for public cloud weakness, especially in the area of the strategic agility needed to deploy duplicate infrastructures quickly in new clouds or zones and then fail-back when the primary location/site is restored.  The hybrid cloud is a superior architecture, which enables new levels of agility which enable new levels of application protection and scale.

The hybrid cloud offers "pay as you need" continuous protection -which is far more efficient than maintaining duplicate fixed infrastructures- with the services and controls of the data center. That combination is a far superior option for business continuity and disaster recovery (compared to today's public clouds and redundant physical infrastructures).

Ø Cloud-Integrated Scalability (Continuous Scalability)
Cloud bursting has been one of the most discussed hybrid cloud killer apps.  Yet because it requires agility first and foremost it may be introduced after agility and protection issues are resolved.  It allows users to "own the base and rent the spike".  I've heard from many insiders close to the development of highly scalable data center environments that the top innovators are using the equivalent of advanced private cloud infrastructures to simulate cloud bursting but have not yet introduced seamless scalability via cloud integration. Again, cloud integration is the natural evolution of both public and private cloud.  Being able to own predictable workloads and rent occasional loads is a far superior operating model for most companies.

Critical Hybrid Cloud Requirements
CloudVelocity CTO Anand Iyengar has started a discussion on hybrid cloud requirements at the CloudVelocity blog.

More Stories By Greg Ness

Greg Ness is a Silicon Valley marketing veteran with background in networking, security, virtualization and cloud computing. He is VP Marketing at CloudVelocity. Formerly at Vantage Data Centers, Infoblox, Blue Lane Technologies, Juniper Networks, Redline Networks, McAfee, IntruVerofficer at Networks and ShoreTel. He is one of the world's top cloud bloggers.

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 work in the area of Big Data analytics and Big Data analytics is a very crowded space - you have Hadoop, ETL, warehousing, visualization and there's a lot of effort trying to get these tools to talk to each other," explained Mukund Deshpande, head of the Analytics practice at Accelerite, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Edge Hosting has announced a partnership with and the availability of CloudFlare, a web application firewall, CDN and DDoS mitigation service. “This partnership enhances Edge Hosting’s world class, perimeter layer, application (layer 7) defensive mechanism,” said Mark Houpt, Edge Hosting CISO. “The goal was to enable a new layer of customer controlled defense and compliance through the application of DDoS filters and mitigations, the web application firewall (WAF) feature and the added benefit ...
Redis is not only the fastest database, but it is the most popular among the new wave of databases running in containers. Redis speeds up just about every data interaction between your users or operational systems. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Dave Nielsen, Developer Advocate, Redis Labs, will share the functions and data structures used to solve everyday use cases that are driving Redis' popularity.
"SpeedyCloud's specialty lies in providing cloud services - we provide IaaS for Internet and enterprises companies," explained Hao Yu, CEO and co-founder of SpeedyCloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Your business relies on your applications and your employees to stay in business. Whether you develop apps or manage business critical apps that help fuel your business, what happens when users experience sluggish performance? You and all technical teams across the organization – application, network, operations, among others, as well as, those outside the organization, like ISPs and third-party providers – are called in to solve the problem.
Creating replica copies to tolerate a certain number of failures is easy, but very expensive at cloud-scale. Conventional RAID has lower overhead, but it is limited in the number of failures it can tolerate. And the management is like herding cats (overseeing capacity, rebuilds, migrations, and degraded performance). Download Slide Deck: ▸ Here In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Scott Cleland, Senior Director of Product Marketing for the HGST Cloud Infrastructure Business Unit, discusse...
Unless your company can spend a lot of money on new technology, re-engineering your environment and hiring a comprehensive cybersecurity team, you will most likely move to the cloud or seek external service partnerships. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Darren Guccione, CEO of Keeper Security, revealed what you need to know when it comes to encryption in the cloud.
The cloud promises new levels of agility and cost-savings for Big Data, data warehousing and analytics. But it’s challenging to understand all the options – from IaaS and PaaS to newer services like HaaS (Hadoop as a Service) and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service). In her session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Hannah Smalltree, a director at Cazena, provided an educational overview of emerging “as-a-service” options for Big Data in the cloud. This is critical background for IT and data profession...
"Tintri was started in 2008 with the express purpose of building a storage appliance that is ideal for virtualized environments. We support a lot of different hypervisor platforms from VMware to OpenStack to Hyper-V," explained Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
It's easy to assume that your app will run on a fast and reliable network. The reality for your app's users, though, is often a slow, unreliable network with spotty coverage. What happens when the network doesn't work, or when the device is in airplane mode? You get unhappy, frustrated users. An offline-first app is an app that works, without error, when there is no network connection. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, a Developer Advocate with IBM Cloud Data Services, discussed...
In the world of DevOps there are ‘known good practices’ – aka ‘patterns’ – and ‘known bad practices’ – aka ‘anti-patterns.' Many of these patterns and anti-patterns have been developed from real world experience, especially by the early adopters of DevOps theory; but many are more feasible in theory than in practice, especially for more recent entrants to the DevOps scene. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists discusse...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Connected devices and the industrial internet are growing exponentially every year with Cisco expecting 50 billion devices to be in operation by 2020. In this period of growth, location-based insights are becoming invaluable to many businesses as they adopt new connected technologies. Knowing when and where these devices connect from is critical for a number of scenarios in supply chain management, disaster management, emergency response, M2M, location marketing and more. In his session at @Th...
As organizations shift towards IT-as-a-service models, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and now cloud environments grows with it. Commvault can ensure protection, access and E-Discovery of your data – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud, or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enterprise. In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Randy De Meno, Chief Technologist - Windows Products and Microsoft Part...
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
What does it look like when you have access to cloud infrastructure and platform under the same roof? Let’s talk about the different layers of Technology as a Service: who cares, what runs where, and how does it all fit together. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, an IBM company, spoke about the picture being painted by IBM Cloud and how the tools being crafted can help fill the gaps in your IT infrastructure.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann returns to 'DevOps at Cloud Expo 2016' as Conference Chair The @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo will take place on November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "DevOps is set to be one of the most profound disruptions to hit IT in decades," said Andi Mann. "It is a natural extension of cloud computing, and I have seen both firsthand and in independent research the fantastic results DevOps delivers. So I am excited t...
"delaPlex is a software development company. We do team-based outsourcing development," explained Mark Rivers, COO and Co-founder of delaPlex Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
University of Colorado Athletics has selected FORTRUST, Colorado’s only Tier III Gold certified data center, as their official data center and colocation services provider, FORTRUST announced today. A nationally recognized and prominent collegiate athletics program, CU provides a high quality and comprehensive student-athlete experience. The program sponsors 17 varsity teams and in their history, the Colorado Buffaloes have collected an impressive 28 national championships. Maintaining uptime...