My 2013 tweets about cloud management platforms and private cloud computing: how much will it change in 2014?
My first client interaction for 2014 was with a large enterprise busy building a private cloud. Like hundreds of customers I talked to in last three years, this organization is struggling to enforce service catalog standardization, to the point that I sarcastically commented on Twitter: “Hello 2011…I mean 2014“
My own comment triggered the urgency to look back at all observations on cloud management platforms and private cloud computing that that I publicly shared on Twitter (@giano) in 2013. The full list is below*.
How much of what I said last year will still be true in 2014? How the CMP market will evolve and solve some of the issues that I highlighted in last 12 months?
- Unsurprisingly (and unfortunately), selecting a cloud management platform is often a matter of perception.
- Only during an in-depth assessment of a CMP you realize how much a vendor wants you to do in a manual/custom way. And it usually is too much
- In the race to build the perfect CMP, acquisitions will focus more & more on configuration and lifecycle mgmt, performance and capacity mgmt
- “Support for multiple hypervisors” in CMPs must go beyond feature parity on basic life cycle mgmt. Example: what about scalability limits?
- Dear vendors: “multi-tenancy support” should mean support at all layers of your cloud management platform, and for all supported hypervisors
- Believe or not, one of the many challenges in evaluating a CMP is understanding exactly what it does/doesn’t. Fear poor documentation.
- Be careful with products included in a CMP bundle. Some editions may lack the features you assume available and there may be no upgrade path
- Most CMPs from major vendors are evolving from a bundle of repurposed apps. For some, it may work over time. Others should consider a reboot
- How cloud management platforms sell: 99% perception, 1% features.
- Always investigate customer references. Always interpret customer references. What you assume can be far from reality.
- Another two clients struggling to move from VM provisioning to application provisioning in their private cloud. Almost on daily basis now.
- “cloud platform” and “cloud management platform” are not the same. Not a matter of terminology. What ppl mean with those terms is different.
- Reviewing notes from our ongoing field research study. Orchestration engines in cloud mgmt platforms are not as sophisticated as they should
- Inquiries on multi-hypervisor private clouds keep growing. Awareness that multiple hypervisors must be supported at all CMP layers doesn’t.
- The more I assess cloud management platforms the more I wonder: are startups focusing their differentiation effort in the right direction?
- Question from client: “Which cloud management platforms match these RFP requirements?” Me: “How many days do you have for this answer?”
- Pleasing changes: more and more when I visit clients to discuss CMPs, at the table sit together guys from arch, infra & ops, apps, and sec.
- Clients keep asking about managed private clouds. I keep answering that lack of expertise and transparency are key aspects to consider.
- Venerable enterprise org, you didn’t know but you actually invested in a false cloud. Sorry. Oh, does it work well for you? Never mind then.
- This whole idea that there is a “true cloud” is always entertaining.
- The more I do it the more I’m convinced that reviewing cloud management platforms’ doc is close to legal doc review in patent litigation…
- I see IaaS, PaaS and SaaS definitions are more confused than ever in 2013. Great progress.
- Flash news: there are plenty of orgs considering or implementing multiple virtual infrastructures and/or multiple CMPs. Business as usual.
- A mostly undifferentiated crowd of CMP startups only generates confusion. In a confused landscape orgs step back and go for trusted vendors.
- Without an early, well defined private cloud strategy, orgs can end up with multiple CMPs, followed by an expensive, complex consolidation.
- Choose your early adopters carefully because much of your CMP success depends on how their feature requests impact your product roadmap.
- CMPs offering multiVM catalog objects must support them at all layers: performance/capacity/lifecycle mgmt, etc. Provisioning is not enough.
- I reviewed over 4K pages documentation for just 3 cloud management platforms since Jan 2013. Reset expectations about Zero to Cloud in 20min
- Impressed by the growing number of orgs asking for a cloud management platform able to support both VMware VMs and IBM Power LPARs
- Many underestimated VMware Lab Manager popularity (and how big the demand for virtual lab automation features is). A big missed opportunity.
- Designing a cloud management platform for large scale deployment should influence product architecture, features, API, and UI. All of them.
- OpenStack distro sprawl, and their common characteristics, should tell something about the project.
- With a growing focus on orchestration and software-defined networks, I wonder when we’ll start talking about self-defending clouds.
- After ongoing market consolidation, at some point, new startups entering CMP market will have to come up with new ideas, not AWS/vCD clones
- Despite top down mandate, not all organizations need a private cloud. Really.
- Many orgs recognize need for process gov in private cloud too late, when dealing with cat obj sprawl & uncertain forecast for capacity usage
- Year 2013. Still this sneaky suspicion that “private cloud” is “virtualization” and “public cloud” is “hosting”. Nobody finds courage to ask
- 3 out of 4 clients -just today- said they want to build a private cloud to automate application provisioning, not just OS. Growing trend.
- Typical sign of CMP immaturity: extended feature overlap across its management modules. From mktg bundle to converged product = huge effort.
- The implementation of multi-tenancy in today’s cloud management platforms is entertaining in most cases.
- Eventually, people will realize that provisioning is just part of catalog object life cycle in the cloud. You have to govern those objects.
- Yet another org looking for a Cloud Mgmt Plat able to support both x86 and Power virtual infrastructures and dissatisfied by market maturity
- Many orgs would prefer a managed private cloud to building their own. Challenge is assessing claimed expertise and get proper env visibility
- Another day, another call with a client preferring to consume a managed private cloud rather than building its own private cloud.
- While virtualization vendors were busy killing their virtual lab automation tools, app owners were busy installing Vagrant, Chef, and Puppet
- Fascinating how our US and EU clients have same burning questions about cloud. I am glad we have plenty of written research to address them.
- Top Qs from clients in Spain: how to build a private cloud, who is best MSP for a managed private cloud, how to become a service broker.
- I thought that keeping an up to date list of CMP vendors was hard. I see that keeping a list of OpenStack distros is even more challenging.
- Who’ll be faster? Next gen config mgmt tools at becoming CMPs, or CMPs at swallowing next gen config mgmt tools?
- AWS blindsided too many cloud management vendors. All building same product. Not enough trying anticipate the imminent needs of large orgs.
- Despite massive ongoing consolidation, the cloud management market still is a sea of opportunities. Missed opportunities, apparently.
- Yet another large org complaining for VMware LabManager EOL. Amazing how many people used it as “just enough” cloud management platform.
- I started advocating the use of automation in 2006. Sad to see in 2013 we are still far away from where we (orgs & vendors) would like to be
- I love “we-manage-a-single-VM-with-a-wiki-which-is-thousands-miles-away-from-any-real-need-large-enterprise-prospects-we-target-have” demos.
- Too many cloud management offerings look great on paper but disappointing at implementation time. For RH, it will be a matter of execution.
- Unsurprisingly, orgs building private clouds find licensing a limiting issue in automated provisioning. Time to rethink your approach ISVs?
- Once you enable perf monitor in your cloud env you’ll instantly have a big data problem.Can you easily scale your on-prem CMP to address it?
- Cloud management platform vendors should seriously consider a SaaS delivery model. Today’s solutions too complex to deploy, scale, expand.
- “What cloud do you think is more secure? Private or public?” Audience overwhelming answer: private. #GartnerCAT
- eBay’s Chief Engineer: “OpenStack is Not Cloud” – goo.gl/GyLQ8f > Amen. I wrote 139 pages on what’s missing: goo.gl/j4MpBT
- Most of the innovation we saw in cloud management so far was focused on provisioning. Can we innovate the remaining part of the life cycle?
- In cloud management platforms, “multi-hypervisor” and “multi-tenancy” are two dangerous terms. Beware of what vendors actually mean by them.
- From where I stand, given the cloud management market demand and evolution, I see at least 3 startups that have a remarkable opportunity.
- Fulfilling the promise of cloud computing requires a programmable infrastructure. HW that didn’t adapt rapidly enough is now virtualized.
- Problem is automating (re)actions based on monitored performance and events occurring in the cloud.
- Cloud success requires a lot of tweets.
- Not enough ambitious startups in Europe. Plenty of untapped opportunities in cloud, virtualization, and enterprise management markets.
- Typical inquiry of mine: Top management said we need a private cloud up and running in X months (where X is borderline surreal).
- Private clouds are maturing at an incredibly slow pace. Most adopters are still stuck in the “building” or “re-building” phase.
- When a vendor’s customer reference *just* implemented a tech you never know the outcome. In 6 months it could be replaced because inadequate
- These days the “de facto standard” status is achieved by ubiquity in press, not implementations. Especially in cloud computing.
- Can a technology be considered a “de facto platform” when everybody is talking about it but very few actually implement it in production?
- Dear mainstream vendors: you better simplify and cut features overlap in your CMP *now*. Your clients are losing faith. You won’t recover it
- More than ever, complexity and cost plaguing CMPs from mainstream vendors is driving clients’ attention towards startups’ alternatives.
- Inquires about skilled and trustworthy consulting firms to build a private cloud, and best providers for a managed private cloud skyrocketed
- During evaluations, always ask to your customer references how often they used PSO, and to the vendor how many fixes went back into product.
- Don’t confuse *interest* with *adoption*. A lot of people talking about a product/tech doesn’t mean they are actually using it.
- Ask your vendor (and yourself): what’s the difference between virtual infrastructure mgmt and cloud mgmt? You’ll be amazed by dance activity
- From where I stand, the opportunity for outsourcers to build managed private clouds remains massive. But they have to hire & retain talents.
- Dear cloud management vendor, your internal IT is your best ally to develop features you need to win enterprise prospects. Listen to them.
- Why do commercial cloud infrastructure solutions based on open source projects (e.g., OpenStack) change their product name every few months?
- The *very few* orgs that calculated the ROI for the cloud orchestration effort *know* how expensive it is. Others underestimate it.
- On average, a complex brownfield app will take 6 weeks min. to be converted in a catalog object with correlated automation workflow
- Starting onboarding from brownfield, complex, legacy apps is a recipe for disaster (as the many FG2000 I talk to regularly confirm)
- Building a cloud mgmt platform through best of breed approach is great in theory. In practice I have a line of clients that tried and failed
- Double check case studies. I keep hearing clients replacing their cloud mgmt platforms for technical, organizational, or political reasons.
- Listen. It’s the sound of the cloud management platform market shrinking. Very few valid CMPs left to be bought. I can see the next ones.
- I’ll never stop to be amazed by how badly cloud management startups know their competition and what large enterprise orgs actually want.
- Calls with clients about how they replaced a cloud management platform with another are always fascinating. So many failed expectations.
- Clients building private clouds continue to expect the automation of a full LoB app stack provisioning without anticipating complexity.
- Ironically, it seems like the more crowded a market segment gets the least vendors try to differentiate.
- Yet another client planning to build a private cloud but actually wanting simple virtual lab automation. I’m sounding like a broken record.
- Once again: CMP multi-tenancy support is not even close as robust as vendors suggest. My post on the subject: goo.gl/LFubiv
- Yet another org considering a private cloud on top of VMware ESX and Power VM. This is the multi-hypervisor demand vendors should focus on.
- The fact that PayPal -not a vendor- adapted Netflix Asgard to support OpenStack tells how inadequate current CMPs are to address mkt demand.
- Too many dashboards, not enough execution plans. And not enough automated execution plans.
- The assumption that provided appropriate insights humans will execute a remediation plan (or the best possible remediation plan) is wrong.
- Who has the most to lose if OpenStack successfully penetrates the enterprise market? The one that has the most adopted virtual resource mgr.
- Yet another org looking for a virtual lab automation tool. CMP vendors: are you waiting for me to set up an online petition before you act?
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