Having spent time with our financial services customers in Europe and New York, our partners and customers at ISC ’10 and some of the leading thinkers on cloud computing, I come home tired but firm in my belief that:
Cloud is happening as we predicted. Grids are evolving to private clouds. Private clouds are being trialed first in test/dev. Private clouds to hybrid clouds to public clouds seems to be the plan for the majority of IT organizations.
HPC clouds (mostly bursting from private clouds or grids) are being driven by peak off-loading. Custom built/configured environments are very much required.
VM adoption will remain limited in HPC environments due to performance overheads (yes 5% overhead matters….)
“HPC as a Service” or "Grid as a Service" (suggest we just call it private cloud) is very attractive and a growing need for ISVs that want to offer hosted environments and/or SaaS.
Migrating to commodity architectures in the enterprise is a top 1, 2 or 3 long-term objective. Many enterprises have “Google envy” in this regard. Few companies realize understand that HPC environments have already shown the way there in many regards.
Clouds cannot be bought. The cloud is still cloudy in terms of offerings and reference architectures. Only discussions about specific architectures that support specific applications are productive.