Category Archives: hybrid

Lenovo launches hybrid cloud platforms and services to accelerate AI

Lenovo has expanded its hybrid cloud platform for AI with new ThinkAgile hyperconverged solutions and ThinkSystem servers that advance cloud deployment, hybrid connectivity and AI capabilities, powered by the next generation of Intel Xeon Scalable Processors. The new AI ready platform delivers improved performance and the latest accelerators as a critical next step for delivering… Read more »

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HCLTech and Cisco create collaborative hybrid workplaces

Digital comms specialist Cisco and global tech firm HCLTech have teamed up to launch Meeting-Rooms-as-a-Service (MRaaS). Available on a subscription model, this solution modernises legacy meeting rooms and enables users to join meetings from any meeting solution provider using Webex devices. The MRaaS solution helps enterprises simplify the design, implementation and maintenance of integrated meeting… Read more »

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LogicMonitor launches Dexda, AI for hybrid observability

LogicMonitor, an SaaS-based AI for hybrid observability platform, is bridging the AIOps gap with the launch of Dexda, an AI solution for Hybrid Observability.  Using machine learning and Natural Language Processing (NLP) to automate insights and deliver a contextualised experience, LogicMonitor’s Dexda empowers ITOps teams to effortlessly identify problems, determine the root cause of those… Read more »

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Joyent launches Container-Native offerings for public and hybrid cloud platform

JoyentJoyent has launched its next generation container-native (G4) and KVM-based (K4) instance package families, which are now available on its Triton-powered public cloud platform.

The company’s cloud platform runs on containers, as opposed to traditional VM’s which the majority of other cloud platforms run on, which it claims will notably improve efficiency. The software used to run the Triton Cloud service is 100% open source and available for customers to use to operate in their own private data centres within a hybrid cloud model.

“Workloads are more efficient on Triton Cloud,” said Bill Fine, Vice President Product and Marketing at Joyent. “This is because Triton allows you to run containers natively, without having to pre-provision (and pay for) virtual machine hosts. The result is less waste and more cost savings for you.

“Consider our recent blueprint to run WordPress in containers. A minimum running implementation requires six g4-highcpu-128M instances and costs just over $13 per month. That minimal site may be perfect for a small blog or staging a larger one. Should you need to scale it, you can resize the containers without restarting them or scale horizontally with Docker-compose scale (or another scheduler of your choice).”

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Joyent’s value proposition and marketing campaigns are seemingly built on the claim it is cheaper and more efficient than AWS, as it would appear the team are set on taking the fight to the incumbent industry leader. The company claim there is a notable price-performance cost advantage, more specifically, Elasticsearch clusters on Triton complete query requests 50% to 70% faster, Sharded MongoDB clusters complete tasks 100% to 150% faster and Standard primary/replica Postgres configurations up to 200% faster, in comparison to AWS.

“The cost of running on Triton is about half the cost of running on AWS,” said Fine. “With enough experimentation and determination you might be able to narrow this cost gap by more efficiently bin-packing your containers into VMs on AWS, but on Triton those efficiencies are built in and the cost and complexity of VM host clustering is removed. Each container just runs (on bare metal) with the resources you specify.”

Microsoft shifts focus to Chinese cloud market

MicrosoftMicrosoft has announced a successful year in the Chinese market, as well as intentions to step-up its expansion plans in the region, according to China Daily.

The company claims it now has more than 65,000 corporate clients, and appetite for its Azure offering in Chinese enterprise organizations is steadily increasing. As part of the expansion plans, Microsoft lowered its prices for Chinese customers earlier this month, seemingly in an effort to undercut its global competitor AWS, as well as local powerhouses such as Alibaba Tencent.

“Though the GDP growth is slowing down, Chinese companies still need to focus on three points to remain relevant and competitive: innovation, productivity and the return of investments,” Ralph Haupter, CEO of Microsoft in China. “And cloud computing can help in all of the above three aspects. We will focus on manufacturing, retail, automotive, media and other industries to further expand market share.”

While China has proved to be one of the top priorities of the majority of the cloud players in recent years, a recent report from BSA highlighted the region was one of the poorest performers in the global IT community. Measuring each country of their cloud policies and legislation, as well as the readiness of its enterprises, China ranked 23 out of the top 24 IT nations worldwide, mainly due to poor performance in the data privacy, cybercrime, promotion of free trade and security categories, though it was one of the worst performers across every category.

Despite concerns from the BSA, Ji Yanhang, an analyst at Analysys International, believes the market has strong potential, stating “China’s national strategies, such as boosting high-end manufacturing, will increase demand for cloud services in the coming years.”

The announcement follows last weeks’ quarterly earnings call, where CEO Satya Nadella reported that Office commercial products and cloud services revenue grew 7%, Office consumer products and cloud services revenue grew 6% and Dynamics products and cloud services revenue grew 9%. Azure revenues grew 120% over the period, though this is down from 140% growth in the previous quarter.

Telstra launches one-to-many Cloud Gateway offering

GatewayAustralian telco Telstra has bolstered his position in the growing cloud market with the launch of Cloud Gateway.

The Cloud Gateway is Telstra’s new solution which enables businesses to connect to multiple public cloud environments, acting as a one-to-many “gateway” model via Telstra’s IP network.

“Most organisations don’t realise the full value of cloud out of a single service,” said Philip Jones, Global Products and Solutions at Telstra. “Instead, our customers are investing in sophisticated hybrid cloud environments, which come with their own range of fragmented networking challenges.

“These include managing multiple vendors, portals and contracts, while trying to maintain a high level of security, performance and operational efficiency. We believe that just because these solutions are sophisticated, doesn’t mean that they should also be complex. Cloud Gateway is Telstra’s simple way to connect multiple clouds, and create hybrid environments.”

The product offering will enable Australian customers to connect to Microsoft Azure, Office365, AWS, IBM SoftLayer, and VMware vCloud Air, while international customers can only connect to AWS and IBM SoftLayer for the moment.

“Telstra is very well positioned to help customers with hybrid and multi-cloud strategies, as we bring the cloud and the network together,” said Jones. “The network is the fundamental piece of the puzzle that helps provide a secure and reliable application experience. Having a single touchpoint also helps reduce IT complexity, enabling our customers to maximise the benefits of investing in cloud.”

Telstra has been making moves within the cloud space in recent months, following the announcement of a cloud innovation centre in February. The centre was launched alongside partners AWS and Ericsson with the focus of accelerating the adoption of cloud technologies.

“Telstra’s vision is to build a trusted network service for mission critical cloud data, and we are excited to explore the opportunity of bringing this vision to life with Ericsson and AWS,” said Vish Nandlall, CTO of Telstra, at the time of the announcement. “The Cloud Innovation Center at Gurrowa intends to bring together cloud experts from Ericsson, AWS and Telstra to encourage cloud adoption and the development of new business opportunities for Telstra and our customers.”

Met Office launches weather app on hybrid cloud platform

SkyThe Met Office has launched its latest app on its new hybrid cloud platform, Weather Cloud, in an effort to increase the speed of delivery and accuracy of its weather data to customers.

The platform itself enables the company to processes meteorological data for mobile, at scale, across all Met Office platforms, to ensure the team can deliver information to the public at times of extreme weather events. In designing the app, the team took a DevOps orientated approach, releasing a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) in the first instance, while monitoring customer feedback to refine the proposition.

“We know that more and more people are choosing mobile devices to access their weather information from the Met Office and it’s vital we continue to address this changing behaviour so we can deliver our world-class weather service,” said Owen Tribe, Head of Digital at the Met Office. “The new app technology will enable us to evolve our digital presence and the ways in which people want to access their weather information in the future.”

During Storm Katie in March, the Met Office received a 200% increase in traffic and with over 8 million visits over the course of the weekend. The team claim the new Weather Cloud platform will better enable them to deal with increased traffic and facilitate better planning for short-term weather events. The company also highlighted the ability to scale down in times of lesser demand to reduce public funds spent on the platform.

Weather Cloud was implemented in AWS with assistance from CloudReach, though the DevOps journey has been maintained as the team continue to make updates to the app based on customer feedback.

“The Met Office now has AWS Cloud infrastructure supporting its services, which can respond to changes in demand quickly, is highly resilient in case of any failures and supports stringent security requirements,” said James Monico, Founder at CloudReach. “Using AWS means that the Met Office does not have to maintain hardware that would otherwise be unused for large parts of the year, but it can instead add and remove resources quickly and dynamically as demand fluctuates.”

HPE targets SMB hybrid cloud market

cloud-hubHPE has launched ProLiant Easy Connect Managed Hybrid, a new offering designed for small and mid-sized businesses, educational institutions and branch offices.

As part of the offering, customers will receive an on premise server, as well as public cloud computing capabilities through HPE. The proposition is the first from the company’s Easy Connect portfolio, which will eventually be a collection of product offerings with the aim of making cloud adoption easier for smaller organizations.

“Small businesses want to focus on growing their core businesses, not spending their limited resources on deploying and managing IT,” said McLeod Glass, GM for SMB solutions at HPE. “This new solution is part of a broad HPE initiative, inspired by the unique needs of small and mid-sized businesses, to deliver innovative solutions that are easy for our channel partners to sell and easy for our customers to use.”

While the cloud market has to date focused on implementation in enterprise size organizations, there have been a number of plays for the SMB market in recent weeks, including from Go Daddy and Microsoft. Although the SMB market does not offer the same level of contracts as those in enterprise scale organizations, it could turn into a potentially lucrative segment. Research from BCSG highlighted that adoption levels are rising healthily.

SMB statsThe finding stated 64% of SMB’s are currently using at least one cloud solution to help them run their business, though the average number of cloud services was in fact three. 78% of the market is considering increasing the number of services they currently consume and by 2017, BCSG estimate that 88% will be using at least one service, and the average number of services consumed per company will be seven.

The ProLiant Easy Connect Managed Hybrid is marketed on the idea of simplicity of use for the customers, through it is not clear how large or significant the Easy Connect portfolio will be on the whole.

“Organizations of all sizes are transforming their IT to a hybrid mix of private and cloud technology,” said Nick East, co-founder and CEO of Zynstra, who’s virtualisation and cloud management software will be used in the offering.

“Together with HPE, we’ve done the heavy lifting for SMBs and their IT partners. This small form factor solution delivers the right business value without compromise or complexity, and is integrated with and managed centrally from the cloud. It’s how IT should be.”

Head in the clouds: Four key trends affecting enterprises

New trends, concept imageCloud is changing the way businesses are functioning and has provided a new and improved level of flexibility and collaboration. Companies worldwide are realising the cloud’s capabilities to generate new business models and promote sustainable competitive advantage; the impact of this is becoming very apparent: a Verizon report recently revealed that 69 per cent of businesses who have used cloud have put it to use to significantly reengineer one or more of their business processes. It’s easy to see why there’s still so much hype around cloud. We’ve heard so much about cloud computing over the last few years that you could be forgiven for thinking that it is now universally adopted, but the reality is that we are still only just scratching the surface, as cloud is still very much in a period of growth and expansion.

Looking beyond the horizon

At present, the majority of corporate cloud adoption is around Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offerings such as AWS, Azure, Office 365 and These services offer cheap buy-in and a relatively painless implementation process, which remains separate from the rest of corporate IT. Industry analyst Gartner says IaaS spending is set to grow 38.4 per cent over the course of 2016, while worldwide SaaS spending is set to grow 20.3 per cent over the year, reaching $37.7 billion. However, the real promise of cloud is much more than IaaS, PaaS or SaaS: it’s a transformative technology moving compute power and infrastructure between on-premise resources, private cloud and public cloud.

As enterprises come to realise the true potential of cloud, we’ll enter a period of great opportunity for enterprise IT, but there will be plenty of adoption-related matters to navigate. Here are four big areas enterprises will have to deal with as cloud continues to take the world by storm:

  1. Hybrid cloud will continue to dominate

Hybrid cloud will rocket up the agenda, as businesses and providers alike continue to realise that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to cloud adoption. Being able to mix and match public and private cloud services from a range of different providers enables businesses to build an environment that meets their unique needs more effectively. To date, this has been held back by interoperability challenges between cloud services, but a strong backing for open application programming interfaces (APIs) and multi-cloud orchestration platforms is making it far easier to integrate cloud services and on-premise workloads alike. As a result, we will continue to see hybrid cloud dominate the conversation.

  1. Emergence of iPaaS

NASA is teaming up with IBM to host a code-a-thon for developers interested in supporting space exploration through apps

The drive towards integration of on premise applications and cloud is giving rise to Integration Platform as a Service (iPaaS). Cloud integration still remains a daunting task for many organizations, but iPaaS is a cloud-based integrations solution that is slowly and steadily gaining traction within enterprises. With iPaaS, users can develop integration flows that connect applications residing in the cloud or on premise, and deploy them without installing any hardware or software. Although iPaaS is relatively new to the market, categories of iPaaS vendors in the market are beginning to emerge, including ecommerce/B2B integration and cloud integration. With integration challenges still a huge issue for enterprises using cloud, demand for iPaaS is only set to grow over the coming months.

  1. Containers will become reality

To date, a lot of noise has been made about the possibilities of container technology, but in reality its use has yet to fully kick-off. That’s set to change as household name public clouds such as Amazon, Microsoft and Google are now embracing containers; IBM’s Blue Mix offering in particular is set to make waves with its triple-pronged Public, Dedicated and Local delivery model. Building a wave of momentum for many application and OS technology manufacturers to ride, it will now become increasingly realistic for them to construct support services around container technology. This does present a threat to traditional virtualization approach, but over time a shift in hypervisors is on the cards and container technology can only improve from this point.

  1. Cloud will be used for Data Resiliency/Recovery services

With cloud storage prices coming down drastically and continuous improvements being made to cloud gateway platforms, the focus is set to shift to cloud-powered backup and disaster recovery services. We are in an age where everything is being offered ‘as a service’; the idea of cloud-powered on-demand usability suits backup and disaster recovery services very well because they do not affect the immediate production data. As such, this should be an area where cloud use will dramatically increase over the next year.

With all emerging technologies, it takes time to fully figure out what they actually mean for enterprises, and these four cloud trends reflect that. In reality we’re only just getting started with cloud, now they understand how it works, the time has come for enterprises to turn the screw and begin driving even more benefits from it.

Written by Kalyan Kumar, Chief Technologist at HCL Technologies.

Rapid Fire Summary of Carl Eschenbach’s General Session at VMworld 2013

By Chris Ward, CTO, LogicsOne

I wrote a blog on Monday summarizing the opening keynote at VMworld 2013. Checking in again quickly to summarize Tuesday’s General Session. VMware’s COO Carl Eschenbach took the stage and informed the audience that there are 22,500 people in attendance, which is a new record for VMware. This makes it the single largest IT infrastructure event of the year. 33 of these attendees have been to all 10 VMworlds, and Carl is one of them.

Carl started the session by providing a recap of Monday’s announcements around vSphere/vCloud Suite 5.5, NSX, vSAN, vCHS, Cloud Foundry, and vCHS. The overall mantra of the session revolved around IT as a Service. The following points were key:

  • Virtualization extends to ALL of IT
  • IT management gives way to automation
  • Compatible hybrid cloud will be ubiquitous
  • Foundation is SDDC

After this, came a plethora of product demos. If you would like to watch the presentation to be able to check out the demos you can watch them here:

vCAC Demo

  • Started with showing the service catalogue & showing options to deploy an app to a private or public cloud. Also showed costs of each option as well
    • I’m assuming this is showing integration between vCAC & ITBM, although that was not directly mentioned
    • Next they displayed the database options as part of the app – assuming this is vFabric Data Director (DB as a Service)
    • Showed the auto-scale option
    • Showed the health of the application after deployment…this appears to be integration with vCOPS (again, not mentioned)
    • The demo showed how the product provided self-service, transparent pricing, governance, and automation

NSX Demo

  • Started with a networking conversation around why there are challenges with networking being the ball and chain of the VM. After that, Carl discussed the features and functions that NSX can provide. Some key ones were:
    • Route, switch, load balance, VPN, firewall, etc.
  • Displayed the vSphere web client & looked at the automated actions that happened via vCAC and NSX  during the app provisioning
  • What was needed to deploy this demo you may ask? L2 switch, L3 router, firewall, & load balancer. All of this was automated and deployed with no human intervention
  • Carl then went through the difference in physical provisioning vs. logical provisioning with NSX & abstracting the network off the physical devices.
  • West Jet has deployed NSX, got to hear a little about their experiences
  • There was also a demo to show you how you can take an existing VMware infrastructure and convert/migrate to an NSX virtual network. In addition, it showed how vMotion can make the network switch with zero downtime

The conversation then turned to storage. They covered the following:

  • Requirements of SLAs, policies, management, etc. for mission critical apps in the storage realm
  • vSAN discussion and demo
  • Storage policy can be attached at the VM layer so it is mobile with the VM
  • Showcased adding another host to the cluster and the local storage is auto-added to the vSAN instance
  • Resiliency – can choose how many copies of the data are required

IT Operations:

  • Traditional management silos have to change
  • Workloads are going to scale to massive numbers and be spread across numerous environments (public and private)
  • Conventional approach is scripting and rules which tend to be rigid and complex –> Answer is policy based automation via vCAC
  • Showed example in vCOPS of a performance issue and drilled into the problem…then showed performance improve automatically due to automated proactive response to detected issues.  (autoscaling in this case)
  • Discussing hybrid and seamless movement of workloads to/from private/public cloud
  • Displayed vCHS plugin to the vSphere web client
  • Showed template synchronization between private on prem vSphere environment up to vCHS
  • Provisioned an app from vCAC to public cloud (vCHS)  (it shows up inside of vSphere Web client)


Let me know if there are questions on any of these demos.