2010 trends: cloud computing

January 30, 2010

I have written many times, reporting Mark Templeton (CEO at Citrix) public declarations, that 2010 should be the year of a large adoption of VDI. But cloud computing is surely another important market trend for this year. Let’s see how the various players are setting their products portfolio in this regard.

At the beginning of the year Alessandro Perilli, author of virtualization.info website, wrote an interesting article about the vmware approach to cloud computing. Rather than details about Vmware cloud offering (“How big the VMware vCloud can be? On paper, up to 25,000 running virtual machines / data center but with no more than 2,000 users / open consoles, and no more than 5,000 customers“), I find very useful the cloud computing classification made by Alessandro that I carry on the following lines:
The industry somewhat agreed to recognize as cloud computing just three major architectures (with examples:

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)
SalesForce CRM
Google Apps
Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS)
Google App Engine
Microsoft Azure
Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS)
Amazon EC2
The Rackspace Cloud

But the reality is that the expression “as a service” can be applied to much more than that, and the vendors’ marketing departments learned this game too well during the advent of virtualization.
So, for instance, we can find things like Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) or Computer-as-a-Service (CaaS), which simply are IaaS architectures which only serve virtual desktops instead of generic virtual machines. It’s like saying Virtual Desktop Infrastructures (VDI) on demand.

Another interesting concept was the following one:
For sure, the growth of this market will depend on how easily the providers will access the technologies that enable cloud computing. If a provider wants to build the whole infrastructure from scratch it will be a challenging activity, no matter which is the cloud architecture of choice. But if the provider wants to leverage existing technologies, then the mileage may vary.
f you want to be a SaaS provider then you may want build on top of a PaaS cloud.
If you want to be a PaaS provider then you may want to build on top of a IaaS cloud.
If you want to be a IaaS provider than you may want to build on top of virtualization

This is why VMware made $20 million dollar investment on Terremark and made some acquisitions, from SpringSource to Zimbra (mail and collaboration software), the last one at the beginning of this year; at the same time Microsoft launched Windows Azure, the Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) cloud computing offering that competes with products like Google App Engine.
Just few days ago Cisco announced its IaaS solution for service providers, obviously based on Vmware virtualization and that takes place alongside the architectural solution of private cloud computing, called multi-tenancy, announced the last 26 january with Vmware and Netapp.

And Citrix? What about Citrix?
It seems that Fort Lauderdale’s software house is devoting all its resources to technical and commercial activities of its flagship product, XenDesktop, which is enjoying great success (I’ll write about this in one of my next posts). Don’t forget that the world’s largest cloud Amazon EC2 is based on Xen (the open sorce version) , upon which is made Xenserver by Citrix. Since from the release of Xenserver 5.5, the last summer, Citrix made available the Citrix Cloud Center (C3), “an integrated portfolio of Citrix delivery infrastructure products packaged and marketed to the cloud service provider market. C3 integrates cloud proven virtualization and networking products that power many of today’s largest Internet and Web service providers.”
In other words Citrix already has all the bricks to building a cloud computing solutions, and every these products are leader in their market segment.
In particular we have the following architecture:
Platform powered by XenServer
Applicatione and Desktop Services powered by XenApp (SaaS Software as a Service) and XenDesktop (DaaS, Desktop asa Service). Togheter and with the Xenserver sublayer they offer a new level of IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)
Delivery made by Netscaler, the famous load balancer that can become a “cloud balancer”
Bridge Bridging between more clouds is made by the Citrix Repeater product.
Orchestration powered by Workflow Studio, the orchestration product by Citrix that allows customers to control their infrastructure dynamically.
Here is an image about the Citrix EC3 architecture:

If you want to learn more, you can read this page from the Citrix corporate website.



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  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by VM Digest, Larry Goldsticker, Mark Ayre, pekka puhakka, The Tech Gang and others. The Tech Gang said: #Cloud #News 2010 trends: cloud computing « XENGeek's Blog: At the beginning of the year Alessandro Perilli, a… http://bit.ly/dqzDll #TCN […]

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