Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Cisco & The Private Cloud

In my previous post, I briefly discussed Cisco and Citrix Teaming up on the Desktop. While I suggested this was an exciting development, I failed to put the announcement in proper context of the overall evolving Private Cloud initiatives that I foresee on the horizon. First, let’s define Cloud Computing, based on NIST’s version 15 definition:

“Cloud computing is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction. This cloud model promotes availability and is composed of five essential characteristics, three service models, and four deployment models.”

NIST then defines three service models:

  1. Cloud Software as a Service (SaaS)
  2. Cloud Platform as a Service (PaaS)
  3. Cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

To a certain extent, many Federal Agencies have already dipped their toes in some or all three of these services models. For example, the Department of Homeland Security is in the process of developing their own Private Cloud and offering email-as-a service to many of its various sub-agencies. But, what other SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS are available for consideration?

For example, perhaps deploying a Cisco Unified Communications Solution on the Cisco UCS platform in a virtual datacenter type of environment, providing true collaborative UC options across multiple agencies? How about thin client and VDI solutions on iPad and Android tablet devices, as I alluded to in my previous post, with imbedded VTC capabilities? Most importantly, how do you build out the virtual storage and cloud infrastructure to support these concepts and infinitives?

In upcoming posts I’ll touch on two other Cisco partnerships to support the Cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): the Cisco/EMC/VMware Virtual Computing Environment (VCE) initiative and the Cisco/NetApp/VMware Secure Multi-Tenancy (SMT) concept.