Never A Dull Week in Cloud Management:

Last week was an eventful one for the cloud management software space with CA acquiring of one of the small startups in the space, 3Tera - and the shuffling of management technologies between EMC and VMware.

I wanted to provide some thoughts on both of these news items as indicators of the fundamental shift taking place in the market that is being driven by the adoption of cloud computing models within enterprise IT environments.

CA and 3Tera

By now many will have heard the news about this acquisition by CA that expands their footprint from enterprise management into cloud management. Multiple analysts, authors and publications have weighed in on its impact on the market. Out of the many articles on this acquisition, I found some good content from Om Malik at GigaOM, where they had predicted a move like this by one of the management players, and Denise Dubie at NetworkWorld who has some extra insight on the roadmap plans for 3Tera within CA.

One blog I particularly liked was written by James Staten, Principal Analyst at Forrester who wrote a perspective on the benefit of and need to include workload management in the IaaS solution. This is very consistent with what we are seeing in our customer engagements around Platform ISF. Self-service provisioning of environments on the cloud is a table-stake requirement. What makes the real difference for customers is the ability to bring workload management into the mix and balance the supply and demand to maximize the effectiveness of the private cloud infrastructure.

VMware and EMC Ionix

Our friend Timothy Pickett Morgan at The Register covered another big piece of news last Friday, with EMC moving significant enterprise management assets to VMware, enabling VMware to be the “Enterprise Management” play in the EMC and VCE family. It appears that vCenter will now become the focal point for enterprise management in the new cloud model, in direct competition with the incumbent “Big 4” providers (I guess we can call them the Big 5 now?). To me this is further indication of the drive for a few large vendors to consolidate and provide the entire cloud stack for enterprise customers, locking them in across multiple layers of technology and reducing their options and choice to control their environment.

Is there a common theme across these acquisitions and shuffles? To me, it appears there is - and it’s the big players moving to lock-in and control the emerging cloud model. I am not sure this will result in the best outcome for enterprise customers, particularly if they are forced to choose between competing, “all inclusive” cloud stacks. There is room and value in cultivating an alternative approach that leaves customers in control of future cloud architectures.


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