The Enablers

By Stan Gibson  |  Posted 2008-10-01 Print this article Print

While the big players are busy adapting their skills and cranking up their marketing machines to address the cloud paradigm, small, agile companies are scrambling to provide utilities and services to cloud customers. In the case of TC3, RightScale helped the company create a scalable application to run on's EC3.

RightScale also offers a dashboard to enable users to set up, launch and monitor AWS cloud services.

With reliability sometimes being a problem, cloud service monitoring tools are taking on an important role.

Hyperic, a company that sells tools for managing large-scale Web environments, recently introduced the beta of CloudStatus, a tool for tracking AWS service levels.

"Cloud platforms are great, but you need the monitoring and management you have with on-premises infrastructure," said Javier Soltero, CEO of Hyperic.

Soltero added that there is a lag between the time of an AWS outage and when reports it. In the S3 outage that AWS suffered recently, he said, CloudStatus was notifying its users via Twitter of the outage 20 minutes ahead of Amazon.

Two vendors are offering tools to integrate cloud services.

Kaavo is a startup offering IMOD (Infrastructure and Middleware on Demand), now in beta, to integrate different AWS EC2 and S3 services from a browser.

Boomi, a company that specializes in integrating applications for small and midsize businesses, recently introduced Boomi On Demand, which lets customers integrate different combinations of SAAS offerings from a Web interface.

Just as the rapid emergence of applications and utilities inaugurated the era of the PC, the rapid emergence of such tools in a cloud ecosystem augurs well for the staying power of the cloud phenomenon. But that may not be enough to get large enterprises to lean heavily on commercial clouds, even as they build out their own intraclouds.

"Private clouds will be huge; the big guys will not trust public clouds for a long time," XCalibre's Huber said.

But intraclouds are part of the cloud picture, as well. And when you factor in the large companies' market muscle and the stimulating jolt of venture capital dollars, not to mention the proliferation of cloud-computing providers themselves, it adds up to quite a lot-enough, even, for the next big thing.  

Stan Gibson is Executive Editor of eWEEK. In addition to taking part in Ziff Davis eSeminars and taking charge of special editorial projects, his columns and editorials appear regularly in both the print and online editions of eWEEK. He is chairman of eWEEK's Editorial Board, which received the 1999 Jesse H. Neal Award of the American Business Press. In ten years at eWEEK, Gibson has served eWEEK (formerly PC Week) as Executive Editor/eBiz Strategies, Deputy News Editor, Networking Editor, Assignment Editor and Department Editor. His Webcast program, 'Take Down,' appeared on He has appeared on many radio and television programs including TechTV, CNBC, PBS, WBZ-Boston, WEVD New York and New England Cable News. Gibson has appeared as keynoter at many conferences, including CAMP Expo, Society for Information Management, and the Technology Managers Forum. A 19-year veteran covering information technology, he was previously News Editor at Communications Week and was Software Editor and Systems Editor at Computerworld.

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