A Cloud User Switches Clouds
Less than two weeks after platform-as-a-service vendor Coghead disclosed that it's going out of business, competitor Caspio has migrated one of Coghead's abandoned customers to its platform.
Salesforce CEO Benioff Claims Huge Wins Over Oracle
UPDATE: Bob Evans has just posted a new column about Salesforce and Benioff's challenges and opportunities in squaring off against Oracle, Microsoft and SAP.
Two months after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison told financial analysts his company was whipping Salesforce in head-to-head competition for cloud deals, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff hit back this week by releasing a list of customers h
IT Search Engine Adds Netflow
Startup Paglo, which offers SaaS-based IT management based on search, now collects Netflow data to help customers monitor bandwidth usage by users, applications and protocols.
Honda Logistics Adds SaaS Link To Supply Chain
This success story highlights one of the reasons why CIOs in this rotten economy can't close their eyes to forward-looking innovation: a Honda warehousing unit says that a SaaS application from a small vendor called SmartTurn has exceeded all of its expectations and is leading to "a whole new change in how this type of business is done."
Survey: Fear Slows Cloud Computing Adoption
A survey of 500 C-level executives and IT managers yields some interesting attitudes toward cloud computing. The bottom line is that while many business and technology managers see potential value in the cloud, fears over security and control are holding them back.
Keep Your Eye on the Prize
My greatest fear as we run, not walk, in the direction of the clouds is that we won't consider how cloud computing folds into our IT strategy, but more how our IT strategy needs to fold into cloud computing. That's dangerous thinking, considering how many times we've done that over the years with less than positive results...
Memo To Google: I Know 600 Students Who Depend On Your Gmail
I couldn't help but take Google's Gmail outage today a bit personally. I'm in the midst of my one, big yearly contribution to my son's school: computerizing the school's heavily paper-based read-a-thon competition, using Gmail as the platform. So I'm asking you please, Google, don't mess up my PTO project. For once I look like a hero rather than the under-involved parent.
How To Get Started With Storage-As-A-Service
Pay-as-you-go online storage services are a flexible way to deal with exploding data volume. For 25 cents per month, you can rent a gigabyte of storage from Nirvanix. But is that any way to buy enterprise storage?
Cloud Experts Miss The Point: Solve A Problem Upfront
At the Cloud Computing Forum, InformationWeek asked a distinguished panel why it was necessary for every hypervisor vendor to launch its own virtual machine runtime format. If we can see the need to move workloads from one cloud to another, a common runtime format would simplify the process. What will it take, I asked, a user revolt?
Coghead's Collapse: Memo From The Trenches
The demise of platform-as-a-service vendor Coghead is being described as a "debacle" and a "disaster" for the small and midsize companies who were using applications built on Coghead's cloud-based platform. Here's the story from the trenches.
Security, Privacy And Compliance In The Cloud
One of the more interesting panel discussions at the IDC Cloud Computing Forum on Feb 18th in San Francisco was about managing the complexities of security, privacy and compliance in the Cloud. The simple answer according to panelists Carolyn Lawson, CIO of California Public Utilities Commission, and Michael Mucha, CISO of Stanford Hospital and Clinics is "it ain't easy!"
Why Cloud At All?
In his recent blog, Bycast CTO David Silk provides some insight on how enterprises minimize the risk associated with adopting cloud storage. At the heart of the matter is why does cloud storage or, for that matter, cloud computing, exist at all?
Is SaaS Cheaper? Depends On How Long You Have It.
Gartner published a report this week on the "five most-common SaaS assumptions." I agree with all of them, but must throw in my own two cents on the first assumption: SaaS is less expensive than on-premises software.
Lessons From The Demise Of A Cloud Startup
Amid the growing interest in cloud computing, Coghead's collapse provides a reality check. SAP is providing a safety net for Coghead's intellectual property and its employees, but Coghead's customers are left to fend for themselves.
A Cloud Conservative
Vanguard talks about its cautious approach to public cloud services, and the steps it's taking to build an internal cloud.
Amazon's Cloud Is Too Cloudy
Amazon senior VP Andy Jassy talks about Amazon Web Services in a recent interview with TechFlash.com. It's an interesting chat with the guy who oversees Amazon's cloud computing business. Unfortunately, Jassy, once again, refuses to answer key questions about AWS.
Berkeley Talks Cloud: Should We Listen?
Far too many people out there in the emerging space of cloud computing are arguing the semantics of this model, and not what's important -- the architectural improvement opportunities and the reasons why businesses should look at cloud computing... What's important to this movement is the use of the model, the benefit to business, and what we need to do to get there.
Google Row Boat
Oliver (Olly) Hicks set out from Tasmania last month in his rowboat to become the first person to row across the world on his own.
Hybrid Storage Service Targets Cloud Doubters
Don't quite trust online storage providers with your company's files? A new service wants to lure the doubtful with a hybrid model that combines local and cloud-based storage. Startup Egnyte links your premises file server to an online service for belt-and-suspenders storage and backups.
VMware To Take Its Next Steps Into The Cloud
It's been six months since VMware announced vCloud, the company's grand plan for public, private, and hybrid computing clouds. It's almost time for an update on VMware's progress.
Amazon Web Services As The Center Of The Software Industry
IBM is the latest software company to make its wares available as machine images on Amazon Web Services. Expect to see more enterprise-class software vendors do the same as a fast-and-easy way to move their software into the cloud.
When The Cloud Fails: Nokia's Ovi Service Loses 3 Weeks Of User Data
Nokia is attempting to position itself as much more than a handset company. It is rife with other services, such as Comes With Music, or Contacts On Ovi, where people can upload pictures and save contact data directly from their phone. That is, when it works. A recent server crash completely lost three weeks' worth of user data.
Forrester: Platform-As-A-Service Is Here And Now
Some of the key questions around cloud computing these days involve timing. When will cloud services be ready? And when should your company adopt them? In a just-released report, Forrester Research says there's no reason to wait.
Interoperability is Key in the Cloud
The big push right now is around interoperability among cloud providers, or the notion of cloud vendors offering built-in communications -- as well as application and data portability -- among suppliers. Core to this concept is a buzzword I've been hearing the last few months: Intercloud.
Google Updates App Engine In Advance Of 'Big Announcements'
It's been a busy few days for Google App Engine, the "preview mode" platform-as-a-service with which users deploy applications on Google's IT infrastructure. Google yesterday released an updated App Engine software development kit and late last week updated the App Engine road map with new APIs.
Dave Duffield Explains The Stickiness Of SaaS
I had a chat the other day with Dave Duffield, a software industry icon who founded PeopleSoft and, more recently, SaaS company Workday. Why, Dave, I asked, are you so confident in the profitability and growth potential of the SaaS model? After all, there's a lot more red than black on the industry's SaaS balance sheets. I share with you Duffield's thinking on the sustainability of SaaS.
IBM Drifts Slowly Toward Mainstream Cloud Computing
Building on its 15-month old Blue Cloud initiative, IBM today introduces additions to its cloud computing portfolio and named new customers and partners. Big Blue's cloud strategy remains focused on the enterprise; customers can't pay by the minute with credit cards, as they can with Amazon Web Services and other general purpose cloud offerings.
Cloud Computing In Government: From Google Apps To Nuclear Warfare
It's still early in the adoption cycle, but we're beginning to see how U.S. federal agencies and other government users might employ cloud computing. Among the scenarios: cloud-bursting at sea by battleship groups, satellite imagery, and open source software development.
SaaS Growth Thrown Into Question
Steve Cakebread, president and chief strategy officer of Salesforce.com, has resigned, and two other execs are out. One analyst speculates that the company is closing smaller, shorter deals. That wouldn't bode well for the SaaS market.
The Anti-Spam Gateway Drug
Proofpoint touts its new SaaS spam filter as an add-on to an e-mail security appliance. Actually, it's a teaser to get customers hooked on the cloud.
Three Execs Reportedly Out At Salesforce.com
Reuters reports that three high-level execs are out at Salesforce.com. The on-demand software company hasn't issued a statement, and I can't yet reach the PR team this morning (it's 7 a.m. on the West Coast). But I do find it interesting that it reportedly showed the door to Gary Hanna, executive VP of enterprise sales, a market segment viewed critical to Salesforce.com's continuing growth.
Arista Networks Won't Trademark 'Cloud Networking'
In a blog post, Arista Networks CEO Jayshree Ullal reveals that the company will drop its attempt to trademark the term "cloud networking." Like Dell before it, Arista has learned that the language of cloud computing is so general in nature that it can't be the intellectual property of one company.
SAP Acknowledges Problems Of Monolithic Software
SAP called it one of its most significant announcements of the year. It leaked its announcement to the Wall Street Journal, which posted a story last night that referenced "Web-based software" and quoted a Salesforce.com executive. But today's big announcement didn't have much to do with SaaS at all. Rather, it was an acknowledgment that SAP's traditionally monolithic approach to software has created problems for customers.
The Economics Of Private Storage Clouds
ParaScale is about to release new software that lets customers create "storage clouds" using commodity Linux servers. The economics are such that the cost of a petabyte of storage, once the domain of only the largest organizations, is coming within reach of more companies.
Private Cloud Technology Doesn't Exist
If you think that private clouds are just doing public cloud-like things within the data center, you're dead wrong. As the hype builds around private clouds, the approaches to building these yet-to-be-defined virtualized systems are really left up to who's building them. There is no one approach, nor is there a killer technology in this space as of yet.
Gartner: Cloud Computing Still For 'Trailblazers'
Gartner has a surprisingly conservative forecast for business adoption of cloud computing services. The IT advisory firm says it could be up to seven years before cloud services reach "mainstream critical mass and commoditization."