In an interview with eWEEK, Simon Wardley, head of cloud strategy at Canonical, said the new services follow up on Canonical's preview release of the Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud in April. The Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud (UEC) uses an open source system known as Eucalyptus to enable organizations to test, deploy and experiment with their own private, in-house cloud that matches the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) API.
Eucalyptus is an open-source software infrastructure for implementing cloud computing on an organization's own clusters. Eucalyptus enables enterprises to create their own cloud computing environment to maximize computing resources and provide a cloud computing environment to their users.
Meanwhile, UEC is now a part of the open source Ubuntu Server Edition technology stack. And by creating private clouds with the technology, organizations can optimize server use and increase data center efficiencies, while lowering costs and providing users with self-service IT. Ubuntu is the first Linux distribution to provide such a system and now Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud Services from Canonical help businesses build these environments with optimal efficiency, Wardley said.
"In April we launched the Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud based on Eucalyptus to enable our users to make private clouds; now we're launching a number of services to build upon this," Wardley said. The services include cloud assessment, deployment and management support, he said.
"Enterprises are realizing that building 'private clouds' enables them to better manage variable workloads, while reducing the waste of idle servers," said Mark Shuttleworth, CEO of Canonical. "Building on an open-source technology also avoids the issue of vendor lock-in. Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud enables businesses to do this - and the addition of these services helps them to do it with confidence."
Wardley said Canonical has teamed up with Eucalyptus to jointly provide the cloud services but with a single interface for the customer through the Canonical support team.
"While the IT industry talks of future strategies and releases vapor ware, UEC today allows businesses to deploy and now support a 'private cloud' on open standards from a renowned Linux provider," said Woody Rollins, CEO of Eucalyptus, in a statement. "We are very excited to lend our expertise to building the type of professional services that will help more businesses discover the benefits of private clouds built on open technologies."
Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud Services enable users to scale up from a five-machine environment all the way to a site license covering all machines, physical and virtual, in a single location.
"We'll help you assess your environment to help you deploy a private cloud," Wardley said. "And we'll help you with the transition from public cloud to private cloud." In addition, Canonical will help enterprises with proof-of-concept activities and also support for their cloud environments.
To use Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud, you must first install Ubuntu 9.04 Server Edition. You can download Ubuntu Server Edition at no charge from www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/download-server.
To find out more about Ubuntu Cloud Computing, go here.