I know most of you are VMware Fans out there, I do like to use vSphere from time to time as well But working now for a bit more then a year at Oracle I have to say, some very exciting things can happen when you marry great management software, virtualization, database and middleware solutions together.
I am a big Cloud Computing fan (understatement) and for me cloud is NOT about “The Cloud” but about changing the way we deliver IT services to our users. Not complicated and slow, but easy to consume and quickly available. Virtualization of course introduced a new way how we can deliver people with their hardware, much faster and fully automated. But how often do users really ask for hardware to get hardware!? Most people want hardware because they want some functionality on top of that, like an application or database.
Last week oracle released an updated version of their Cloud Management solution (Enterprise Manager 12c) which is like a vSphere / vCloud Director / vFabric Data Director / vFabric TC Server IN ONE! (and more). Yes one product, meaning one self-service portal with ONE menu. On this menu you can offer users:
- Assemblies (like vApps, but with deeper software integration in the apps and config running on a group of VMs)
- Pre-installed VMs (like a VM with preinstalled Database or middleware software)
- Database as a Service (No virtualization, but a full database instance running on an existing database hardware platform)
- Database Schema as a Service (No virtualization, just offer zillions of users a schema out of one existing database system, super low overhead)
- Middleware / java as a Service (No virtualization, instant provision java applications to an existing middleware platform, with full automation to scale up and down)
- Testing as a Service, Using virtualization you can easily get any kind of test environment, PLUS!! full automatic execute workload tests against these test environments! Just pick the a workload test, which you can design once, from the menu and all will be taken care off, including full automatic reporting!
For the Database/Schema as a Service, this is not just based on getting an empty database but also includes the capabilities to get snapshots from an existing database, great for testing purposes. And we support both Thick and Thin Snapshots. So if you want to run a test against a gigantic database, you can get a thin snapshot made in seconds, use little extra diskspace and you are all set, and all this using no virtualization (no multiple OSes and software stacks) but build-in capabilities of our database and management platform.
So if you want to run an IT restaurant, where your users can not just ask for pots and pans to cook up their own food, but where you can serve an actual meal, check it out
Well well, what is going on in the virtualization landscape. I guess more compute virtualization challenges are solved, so it is up to the next challange, network virtualization. Today IP addresses really pose a big problem in creating an agile environment, as it represents both identity and location.
To help start solving some of these network challenges, VMware and Oracle both announced big acquisitions in the networking space.
VMware will acquire Nicira, who is specialized in software-defined networking. Oracle will acquire Xsigo, who as well is specialized in software-defined networking
Is it a coincidence that both virtualization players are getting into software defined networking? Of course not, as I said, most problems around compute virtualization are solved today, while networking is still very much old-school. If we want environments where virtual machines can move from on-premise to off-premise, from one datacenter to another, if we do not want a 1000 cables sticking out of our highly consolidated servers, we need to get the networking on the virtualization bandwagon
When both companies will integrate these solutions into their stack it will truely be a win for all their customers, who will gain a lot of networking flexibility because of it.
If you thought that large organizations are not looking at public cloud solutions, i guess you were wrong. The BBC is reporting today that the Spanish bank BBVA is moving all their 110.000 staff to use google services. The bank does claim to keep all customer data on-premise, but services like email, calendar, docs, chat, video conferencing and other collaboration tools will run on Google’s systems.
The biggest challenge for the bank, besides the worry about extra network traffic, is of course cultural issues. As technology today is ready for this new way of IT.. the people might just not be