|By Bob Gourley||
|January 30, 2016 02:00 PM EST||
How Open Hybrid Clouds Will Change Cloud Computing
By Rick Delgado
The cloud has evolved quickly. Businesses have weighed the perks of private, public, and even hybrid clouds. If those options weren’t enough, here comes the open hybrid cloud.
An open hybrid cloud leverages the benefits of accessing data and processes across private and public implementations, while facilitating open source development. It is a model that has expanded within the military. In the search for costs savings, the Department of Defense has experimented with many new cloud models.
- On-premise, government-provisioned clouds
- On-premise, government-owned cloud, managed by an outside commercial vendor
- Internal clouds completely managed by a commercial provider
A New Force in the Cloud Market
A hybrid approach, the Forge.mil program combines various enterprise services, used by technology professionals at the Department of Defense (DoD). It has been created by the Defense Information Systems Agency. The DoD’s technology development community can use open source software and collaborate privately. There’s also an on-demand component with a pay-per-use model.
Military testers, developers, project managers, operators, certifiers, and end users can all make use of the system. About 30,000 people currently have access, making a higher security cloud that meets the needs of the military, while helping match various cost goals.
What the Open Hybrid Cloud Means for Businesses
This latest cloud re-envisioning has much potential in the business world. It offers a more effective means to control infrastructure. A number of systems, many which can be independent of the underlying technology, can be linked. You can use existing corporate investments. The open hybrid cloud offers a level of flexibility that businesses in a global economy benefit from.
An open hybrid cloud:
- Makes applications and data accessible and portable across multiple clouds.
- Encompasses any number of physical and virtual servers, while supporting a huge choice of public cloud offerings.
- Simplifies infrastructure, enabling IT to avoiding having to create new silos, which often consist of new technologies and firewalls. Silos increase complexity and cost.
In this cloud model, your computing resources are standardized. Today’s enterprise infrastructure is a complex web of hardware, programs, applications, and flash storage. IT decision-makers often resort to solutions that improve a particular function, but in the process generate another silo.
Providers are now offering services that combine IT assets in an open hybrid cloud. Red Hat offers such a service, as do many others now. This service involves a multi-step approach to implementing the new type of cloud.
The business also has many perks of open source at their disposal. These include:
- Choosing the components and technologies that work, without being limited by a specific vendor.
- One vendor does not have control over corporate infrastructure.
- IT has more control over development and implementation.
- Better innovation, as there’s access to open standards.
- No restrictions related to patenting.
- The ability to deploy the cloud on any infrastructure.
- Extended interoperability, thanks to extensible APIs.
- Applications can be moved across public/private clouds.
Will Open Hybrid Clouds Change Cloud Computing?
Transitioning to an open hybrid cloud is a process in itself. Creating a pilot project or testing an application subset may appear to mimic the silo-generating process. The concept, however, provides access to open source communities, open standards, intellectual property, and protocols and formats. A standardized yet variable approach is therefore more accessible.
The degree to which things will change remains to be seen. It is sure adding flexibility, but the cloud has always been fluid. As businesses and the DoD seek to capitalize on the benefits, cloud computing is becoming more practical and affordable for entities in any sector or industry. Even the U.S. military is finding ways to improve its security and operations. The future of cloud technology should become clearer as the open hybrid model catches on.
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