Fruit Of CA Cloud Acquisitions Adds Up

After two years of acquisitions, CA introduces 10 products to help customers plan and deliver private clouds that can use internal and external services.
Slideshow: Cloud Security Pros And Cons
Slideshow: Cloud Security Pros And Cons
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CA Technologies, sometimes identified with the mainframe, repositioned itself recently to help its customers move in pragmatic, discrete steps toward cloud computing.

Over the last two years, it's made a series of small firm acquisitions in the cloud arena, including 3Tera, Nimsoft, and Oblicore. The fruit of that effort was announced Wednesday as it offered a set of new products stemming from the acquisitions, combined with upgrades to existing products.

CA has been integrating the acquired technology into a broader cloud approach, particularly for customers with legacy systems. Such customers need to move in steps that allow them to plan, design, deliver, and secure cloud services, and also have a way to ensure they are performing as expected, Jay Fry, vice president of marketing for cloud computing, said in an interview.

CA AppLogic 3.0 is a result of the 3Tera acquisition in March 2010. AppLogic 3.0 allows a cloud user to model a service and drag components for it from a catalogue to assemble and deploy it on virtual servers. The service may be connected to other applications in the software infrastructure of the enterprise by drawing lines in the model to the target systems. Fry said AppLogic helps with the design and deliver steps of cloud computing with its graphical user interface. Services that may have taken days to construct previously may be built in a few hours, using the modeling process.

The 3.0 version allows services built in AppLogic to run both VMware ESX and Citrix Xen hypervisors on the same server cluster. Customers may also use the Open Virtual Format, a standardized virtual machine format recognized by both hypervisors, to import virtual machines needed to establish a service. Typical CA AppLogic deployments start at $100,000; it is also available through annual subscription, Fry said.

Enterprises often use a mix of internal and external services, but they don't always know how well they're performing, Ryan Shopp, senior director of product marketing, virtualization, said in an interview. CA Business Service Insight 8.0 stems from the Oblicore acquisition and has been upgraded to track what services are running, monitor their performance, and identify when they are not meeting service level agreements.

The monitoring tool is also geared to help IT administrators evaluate the tradeoffs between using internal and external services. The evaluation process is based on benchmarks established in the CA-sponsored Service Measurement Index, currently hosted at Cloud Commons.

The product helps in the planning stage and in assuring services are delivered as planned, said Shopp. Pricing for Business Service Insight varies based on several metrics, but the average sale is $200,000.

CA Automation Suite for Clouds 1.0 is a combined CA product aimed at allowing enterprises to securely provision cloud servers in the data center. It is a combination of several predecessors, including CA Server Automation, CA Virtual Automation, CA Process Automation, CA Configuration Automation and CA Service Catalogue. A base configuration in a 100-socket pack starts at $195,000.

CA announced a total of 10 new or upgraded products Wednesday, including some designed for cloud service providers as well as the enterprise.

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