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Cloud Management Tools – Programming your ‘Cloud OS’

cloud-brokerAs Michael O’Neill writes here, a quickly brewing sector of the Cloud market is ‘Cloud Management Tools’ (CMT) – Technologies that help you plan for and manage your use of Cloud services.

It’s a hot sector because it spans a number of dimensions of Cloud adoption, such as the link Michael provides, tracking your Amazon costs.

There will indeed be growth of an ecosystem of different tools, catering for the end to end process of migrating to the Cloud, such as estimating, forecasting and simulating costs, migrating legacy apps and so forth. Start-ups like Gravitant recently netted $3.8m in VC for their platform that offers this functionality as part of a Cloud Service Brokerage.

Their Cloud Matrix platform is an example of a suite of CMT, offering a catalogue framework for organizing virtualized resources into self-service menus and other automations.

Planning your Cloud OS

Migrating to the Cloud represents a de-coupling of your business systems software from the legacy and proprietary hardware that it used to run on, with the Cloud layers of IaaS, PaaS and SaaS offering the means to plan a more logically separated IT environment.

Your CMT platform will also play a key role in the most critical aspect of Cloud computing architecture: Portability and interoperability. Being able to ‘shop and ship’ your IT workload back and forth across Cloud providers as economics and availability needs dictate.

Thus although IaaS is part of the same overall Cloud, you will actually be migrating and deploying your apps to the PaaS layer, acting like a “Cloud OS” to abstract your application from the details of this underlying layer.

This includes contractually too – Buying a 24 month contract is ‘hard-wiring’ your service design in the same way buying a fixed number of physical servers does.

Instead the future of IT is about empowering IT and business users with dashboards for ‘click and build’ control over IT resources as they need them, that is powered by a middleware that automates procurement of the services from across multiple Cloud providers.

CMT – Canada Cloud Roadmap

The objective of showcasing these different categories of the Cloud industry is to help accelerate innovation in those areas. As Gravitant demonstrates the field attracts significant investor interest.

Therefore we will be updating the Canada Cloud Roadmap with this major category and begin development of further expertise in this area as a means of supporting more new start-ups in this track.


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