NEW ORLEANS--The world is on its way to becoming a truly cross-platform environment in which to live and work, a place where the Internet itself someday will fade slowly away and become an always-on utility, like electricity and water. It will be a force we'll always need, but it also will be something we won't think about nearly as much as we do today.
The forward-looking IT companies already anticipate this and are readying their products for full cross-platform functionality. Parallels, a cloud infrastructure enablement provider that works with just about every type of IT system, is one of those progressive companies that sees this coming.
Parallels made its reputation developing and marketing software that enables Windows OS and its apps to run seamlessly on Apple laptops and tablets. The company now does about two-thirds of its business on the service-provider side; it's a major international player in hosting and cloud services enablement and other cross-platform packages.
Because there are so many different types of operating systems, applications, hypervisors and middleware mixing it up in the real data center world, enterprises are forced to obtain their services from numerous providers, which results in more time and resources spent managing IT and service providers not maximizing their opportunities.
Automation Is What Parallels Is All About
In order to capture these opportunities, hosters and service providers need to have the right underlying platform to be able to deliver a relevant, integrated and easy-to-use set of services to their customers. This is what Parallels does; in fact, it automates all its services, unlike almost all of its competitors.
When all software "just works" in any system, on any device, on demand, that's when the Internet begins to fade into the background and functionality takes over. We're still a few years away from that, however. Parallels is moving service providers who sell to SMBs in that exact direction.
"Right now, businesses everywhere are moving to the cloud faster than ever," CEO Birger Steen said in his Day 2 keynote Feb. 25 at the Parallels Summit here at the Hyatt Regency. "For the first time in history, critical business technology is as accessible for the florist on Main Street as it is for the behemoths of Wall Street.
"As a result, the SMB cloud industry is growing 30 percent to 40 percent year over year. Service providers working with Parallels are able to tap into this growth with a proven platform and approach to make the cloud work for all types of businesses, small and large."
At its ninth annual Summit, the Renton, Wash.-based software maker introduced some new products, including the following:
--Parallels Automation platform with APS 2 for software-as-a-service (SaaS) and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) delivery with more than 500 services available through private, public and hybrid clouds. Using the Parallels Automation platform, IT managers now can provision IaaS based on the leading cloud management, virtualization and storage solutions, such as VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V, CTERA, Acronis and others.
This enables Parallels' partners the option to take advantage of market growth with the IT customers prefer to support a diversity of use cases, including virtual data centers, business applications, enterprise applications, e-business hosting, test and development, batch computing and SaaS applications.
--Parallels Plesk is a Web management package designed for shared hosting businesses, designers, digital agencies, SMB IT professionals and application developers. Each instance can be optimized for how each enterprise uses Plesk on a day-to-day basis.
The latest version, Plesk 12, provides a new security core with Atomicorp ModSecurity rules that provide powerful server-to-site security right out of the box. In addition, a new WordPress toolkit helps hosters mass-manage and secure multiple Wordpress installs, including all plug-ins and themes, in their infrastructure.
--Windows Azure Pack APS Package enables service providers to rapidly deploy Microsoft's Windows Azure Pack services through the APS for Parallels Automation. The Azure Pack helps service providers to offer the advanced cloud capabilities of Azure services based on their own infrastructure. These technologies include the ability to offer IaaS and hosted databases with virtual networks, high-density scalable Websites, as well as an enterprise service bus. Parallels Automation allows for seamless provisioning of these new services, as well as the consolidated billing with other offerings in the service provider's environment.
--Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator APS Package is very cross-platform; it enables fast deployment of highly differentiated public IaaS cloud offerings based on the Flexiant Cloud Orchestrator with automated billing, provisioning and customer management provided by Parallels Automation. When the Flexiant APS Package is deployed with Parallels Automation, FCO provides compute, network and storage orchestration; end user self-service control panels; APIs; and support for a full range of virtualization IT, including Parallels Cloud Server.
--APS Packaged IaaS offerings are now available from IBM/Softlayer and Hostway. For service providers who want a lower price point, both IBM/Softlayer and Hostway have APS packages to enable syndication of their infrastructure through Parallels Automation.
All the new products are available now. Go here for more information.