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Sarah UKFast | Account Manager

Cloud options- vCloud, Azure, Microsoft etc

16 July 2009 by James Crawshaw

This morning I read Alan Muphys blog over at the Virtual DataCenter site. He talks about the vCloud, Azure and Microsoft. I dropped a comment on his site which is still in moderation as I type but I felt it warranted an additional posting on our blog to go into further detail.

So, as I wrote – on the vCloud/vSphere front (this is VMWare’s latest offering of virtualization – rebranded to reflect current market terminology), it is clear to see the model, and benefits, of developing in house and then deploying the entire infrastructure to the service provider cloud.

What Alan discussed in his post was that Azure (Microsofts yet to be released hosted cloud based environment), might compete with Microsofts other offerings to end users and businesses. This may be true, however, there is more to this than meets the eye. The Azure platform is targeted as a one stop shop for people to develop entirely in the cloud and much like GoogleApp, requires development with that in mind and in adherence to the requirements of the platform. Therefore, the issues are that unlike vCloud, you can’t develop your infrastructure in house, test it and be happy with it and then launch it to the hosted cloud. But this is where I beleive the next step lies…..

The MS virtualization platform (Hyper-V) and the management tools (System Center & PowerShell) are a great set of tools which provide us with the ability to fully customise and build our own cloud environments – I blogged on this back in April. If you need/want to build and test your environment on your own kit in your own datacenter/comms room – or simply keep a copy of it for r&d etc – then that’s fine – and a great idea! The key thing is that you need a partner to be able to host the production version of this infrastructure for you (for all the usual reasons) – and, you guessed it UKFast can be that partner. We’re shortly to bring online our hosted cloud type environment using these technologies and hence any infrastructure developed with these technologies outside of our environment can be uploaded and bought online in the fully hosted, resilient and managed environment. Watch this space for more info on the launch of our environment!