Welcome!

Recurring Revenue Authors: Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Janakiram MSV, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, @BigDataExpo

@CloudExpo: Blog Post

Private Clouds | @CloudExpo @RamchandaniRaj #DigitalTransformation

Enterprises must carefully choose the best technology stack to deliver their new dynamic cloud infrastructure and services

Private Clouds - What Enterprises Should Know Before Implementation

Enterprises are rapidly implementing private clouds for sound business reasons. Private clouds offer greater agility, enabling companies to quickly adapt to constantly changing business needs and innovate faster than competition. Digital and cloud services can be provided to developers at a pace of innovation that equals any public cloud. Companies can maintain security and compliance, along with the reliability, availability and stability of IT systems of large enterprises. Private clouds also provide better SLAs for new services than most public clouds offer.

While there is a sense of urgency surrounding implementation, enterprises must still carefully choose the best technology stack to deliver their new dynamic cloud infrastructure and services. They must carefully develop a transition plan, understand and set goals for availability, ease of use, developer experiences, and identify any potential holes that could jeopardize their transition and investment in newer cloud-native architectures.

In this article, we discuss some key considerations for choosing the right technology stack to deploy private and hybrid clouds.

The Foundation of a Private Cloud
The cloud journey for any enterprise begins with defining goals, creating a strategy and detailed implementation plan, followed by identifying key milestones and metrics to track. A well-thought implementation plan that follows the latest trends in cloud computing is critical to success. Enterprises typically benefit from a hybrid cloud strategy and most use public clouds for certain workloads, either enterprise-wide or a workgroup-level application.

Let's look at some of the key criteria for a private enterprise cloud strategy and implementation plan.

Business Case for Private Clouds
Implementing private clouds tends to be capital and operationally expensive, requiring additional levels of technologies, infrastructure and resources. From a business point of view, key considerations for using private clouds include:

  • Infrastructure agility to enhance developer productivity and speed release of new services
  • Migration to the DevOps process, improving services and applications delivery
  • Control over infrastructure, with the ability to define SLAs
  • Security and compliance maintained internally, rather than depending on third-parties
  • Need to leverage existing infrastructure and data centers, optimizing capital investments. For example, leverage VMware licenses that enterprises have already invested billions of dollars
  • Avoid 100 percent dependencies on public cloud or external infrastructure providers, limiting exposure
  • Manage capex and opex, with the ability to switch to private cloud vs. public cloud options as needed.

Private Cloud Technology Stack
From discussions with several enterprises that have embarked on their journey to hybrid clouds, it's quite obvious that the right technology stack to build a private cloud may well decide success or failure of the implementation project. Private cloud stack means primarily choosing technology for compute, storage and networking, as well as making sure there are easier integrations for other cloud services, platform-as-a-service or CI/CD and DevOps toolset.

The key criteria to select the technology stack for private clouds include:

Open source vs. closed source technology
Technology for private and hybrid clouds is evolving rapidly, with an unprecedented pace of innovation in next generation data center technologies and new application architectures. It's imperative to bet on a technology that is open source and has a vibrant developer community supported by a large vendor(s).

Driven by a single vendor, closed source (proprietary) technology tends to evolve much slower, which could hamper the speed of innovation. However, the evolution of the technology must focus on solving a key requirement of enterprises. Some open source projects, especially those with a very large presence of several vendors, tend to become multi-focused and driven by respective agendas of the vendors themselves. Over-engineered open source technology is often broad and could cause unnecessary complexity in the implementation phase.

Technology providers
Key vendors that are core leaders of the open source project must be engaged to help implement hybrid clouds. Private cloud technologies tend to be complex and constantly evolving. Core technology developers can help navigate the intricacies of complex features and integration points, providing guidance for migrating and developing new applications on hybrid clouds.

Support for existing workloads
It's likely some or most of existing workloads should move to a private cloud to improve efficiency and agility of applications. Identifying the technology stack's capabilities and potential gaps helps make the best decisions on managing existing applications and services. Enterprises should implement several proof of concepts to understand how the migration will work and any changes that may be necessary during the migration. Not all workloads are easy to migrate because of how compute, storage and networking are implemented on private clouds, compared to legacy data center architectures.

Standardize on IaaS or PaaS
Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) provides flexibility to deploy various types of workloads and architectures, but requires enterprises to manually integrate several point solutions such as monitoring, auto scaling, disaster recovery or failure recovery.

On the other hand, Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) provides an integrated application platform so applications and architectures can be standardized and developers can focus on developing code, not deploying infrastructure. While PaaS improves developer productivity, it does limit architecture flexibility. Applications must be written to the platform, which may provide a platform and/or vendor lock-in.

Enterprises should consider all the pros and cons of each platform. It's common to use both IaaS and PaaS, identifying the workload to be deployed on each platform. In such cases, enterprises must choose well-integrated platforms that do not create additional operational complexity and cost.

Operational efficiency and Intelligence
Cost and complexity of operating private clouds must be the prime consideration, since the stability and reliability of the cloud determines the value from the private cloud initiative. Operational intelligence built into the platform provides a common framework for log files analysis, event and alert pipeline management, risk and compliance assessment, and capacity planning. Embedded deep analytics provides visibility into the operations and utilization of the platform, which may impact the overall usability and ROI of the platform.

Metering, billing and charge-back
For enterprise-wide deployment, enterprise cost structure requires IT to meter and charge-back the utilization of cloud resources. While this feature may not be part of an integrated open source project, commercial distributions provide fully integrated or a certified third-party solution.

Technology roadmap
Ongoing development, a strong technology roadmap, and the foundational of an open source project assures investment protection. Enterprises must invest time to understand the technology roadmap, aligning it with their own planned roll out of cloud and cloud services. Enterprises can invest resources and join the open source foundations or project communities to assert influence over the roadmap. Open source projects welcome investment from larger enterprises and this must be considered a top priority before committing to an open source technology. Failure to invest and influence the open source project risks that the project direction will be hijacked by other larger enterprises. The risk is not only to the successful deployment and migration to hybrid clouds, but also leaves doors open for competition to cause financial damage.

Federation with public clouds
Many enterprises need a hybrid cloud strategy, where most of their resources and some cloud services are consumed from public clouds and most sensitive workloads remain on premise, on private clouds. But to ensure a seamless transition for developers and IT ops, it may be mandatory to federate the private and public clouds. Federation eliminates the complexity of managing multiple cloud environments, enabling single sign-on and consolidated metering, billing, and allowing easy migration or workloads on-demand.

Third-party ecosystem
The foundation private cloud solution can be extended to additional services and integrations to existing assets through third-party plugins, service brokers or validated and certified integrations. Pre-tested integrations of third-party solutions help eliminate the cost of custom implementations and professional services. It's highly desirable to ensure enough relevant integrations are available, and not limited to networking, storage, load balancers, messaging systems, active directories, login systems, monitoring and other assets that enterprises already have deployed.

The benefits of private clouds are well documented and while enterprises may be eager to begin implementing a private cloud, it's important to take the time to consider open source vs. closed source technology, existing workloads, IaaS or PaaS, technology roadmaps and other critical points. It's the time spent at the beginning that may well determine if the journey to the cloud is a smooth one.

More Stories By Rajesh Ramchandani

Rajesh Ramchandani is General Manager of Accelerite’s Cloud Services and Platforms. He leads Accelerite’s cloud infrastructure services and platforms, enabling companies to quickly and easily build private and public enterprise clouds. Previously, he was co-founder and VP of Products at startup CumuLogic, an innovator in private database-as-a-service (DBaaS) software. He has also held senior executive roles overseeing cloud technologies at global companies such as Oracle Corporation, Sun Microsystems, and Wipro Infotech.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that T-Mobile will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. As America's Un-carrier, T-Mobile US, Inc., is redefining the way consumers and businesses buy wireless services through leading product and service innovation. The Company's advanced nationwide 4G LTE network delivers outstanding wireless experiences to 67.4 million customers who are unwilling to compromise on ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with 20th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry p...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR), an industry leader in automated, scalable and secure networks, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Juniper Networks challenges the status quo with products, solutions and services that transform the economics of networking. The company co-innovates with customers and partners to deliver automated, scalable and secure network...
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Analytic. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitachi, the leading provider the Internet of Things and Digital Transformation, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., offers an integrated portfolio of services and solutions that enable digital transformation through enhanced data management, governance, mobility and analytics. We help globa...
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitachi, the leading provider the Internet of Things and Digital Transformation, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., offers an integrated portfolio of services and solutions that enable digital transformation through enhanced data management, governance, mobility and analytics. We help globa...
20th Cloud Expo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Grape Up will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company specializing in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the U.S. and Europe, Grape Up works with a variety of customers from emergi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in compute, storage and networking technologies, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology, is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data Center, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Hadoop/...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings in the last year, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their back-end AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT – especially in the connected home and office. Amazon is extending its reach by building on its dominant Cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strategy, recently announced Replenishment Services, the Echo/Alexa voice recognition control platform, the 6-7 strategic...
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
In his keynote at @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Director of IoT Engineering at Citrix and co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, focused on building an IoT platform and company. He provided a behind-the-scenes look at Octoblu’s platform, business, and pivots along the way (including the Citrix acquisition of Octoblu).
Data is an unusual currency; it is not restricted by the same transactional limitations as money or people. In fact, the more that you leverage your data across multiple business use cases, the more valuable it becomes to the organization. And the same can be said about the organization’s analytics. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bill Schmarzo, CTO for the Big Data Practice at Dell EMC, introduced a methodology for capturing, enriching and sharing data (and analytics) across the organization...
The explosion of new web/cloud/IoT-based applications and the data they generate are transforming our world right before our eyes. In this rush to adopt these new technologies, organizations are often ignoring fundamental questions concerning who owns the data and failing to ask for permission to conduct invasive surveillance of their customers. Organizations that are not transparent about how their systems gather data telemetry without offering shared data ownership risk product rejection, regu...
Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the USA and Europe, we work with a variety of customers from emerging startups to Fortune 1000 companies.
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.