Cloud Portability

In late 90s and early 2000, though we were able to develop websites, that were browser neutral , it was a pain point and it has been reduced to a great extent with the advent of UI tools such as Infragistics, Telerik etc. Though the browser neutrality issue continues, now the greater pain is in developing mobile applications for atleast the big FOUR platforms. In our previous post, I blogged about the vaious tools available to achieve that.

Close on the heels of cross-platform mobile development and number portability among mobile operators, then next big thing would be to come up with products and solutions that makes it easy to move in and out of various clouds. If you are hosting in Amazon, you want to be able to move from there to any of the other vendor or to your own private cloud without a cinch! The ultimate tool would take an Amazon AMI as input and produce a set of files which could be used to restore or recreate the machine either in your cloud or at another vendor.  Its like walking into your datacenter, walking out with your hardware, walk into your new datacenter and set up the servers in the new place. Though we don’t have such a product, there are mulitple that helps you in making your product work in multiple clouds.

I was looking around and noticed that EMC-VMWare is working on a open source solution, while Citrix is working on a solution called cloudbridge that lets you deliver data & applications to & from the cloud faster. Google has teamed up with VMWare to announce cloud portability. Thus applications running in VMWare vCloud, vSphere can be deployed in Google App engine. Thus these apps can be easily moved in and out of Google and your private cloud running VMWare.

What we need is a complete set of standards on Machine images, application deployment, packaging.  This will lead to making cloud interoperable. Wipro, one of the IT solution provider claims to have come up with a w-SaaS solution that offers Cloud interoperability and portability through their Cloud Provider Fabric. If you search google for this, you could find the white paper from Wipro.

Though there are multiple interesting products, one that is promising is the cloud OS from Nimbula.  It lets you shunt between Private and Public clouds. This might be a server side offering competing with VMWare while Google Chrome will be on the Desktop.


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