PaaSification - use Cloudsoft's Brooklyn to create your own Force.com?

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1 PaaSification - use Cloudsoft's Brooklyn to create your own Force.com? Analyst: William Fellows 3 Apr, 2012 Cloudsoft's mission is to enable enterprises to develop, deploy and manage business-critical distributed applications in the cloud. Its software is designed to ensure these applications can be elastic, self-optimizing and span multiple clouds. Brooklyn, a control plane that provides an application provisioning 'runbook' to Cloudsoft's jclouds cloud broker, is to be introduced at this week's Hosting and Cloud Transformation Summit in London, and is now the centerpiece of the company's application platform toolkit. Technology Brooklyn is a third leg of Cloudsoft's application platform toolkit, and should be seen as the spear tip of its commercial activity going forward. Brooklyn is a control plane (point?) and console that automates the deployment and management of applications into multiple execution venues and clouds in accordance with business policies. Brooklyn allows end users to take distributed applications designed and developed in conjunction with other middleware components, and deploy them via Cloudsoft's jclouds cloud broker implementation into multiple clouds. Although Brooklyn can work with applications created using the company's Monterey development environment (the application fabric the company was first created on), this is not a requirement. Indeed, Cloudsoft says that nine of 10 conversations it has with prospects are around Brooklyn and 'PaaSification.' That Brooklyn delivers a specific 'runbook' functionality shouldn't come as a surprise, given the founder of RBA play Enigmatec, Duncan Johnston-Watt, is also Cloudsoft's founder and CEO. The recipe is as follows: developers writes application code and use middleware components (possibly using the Monterey development environment). The user then describes the application in the Brooklyn control plane, and attaches policies and limits to it, which describes what it should look like at runtime a kind of blueprint. Whirr (the Apache library and a command line tool that Copyright The 451 Group 1

2 can be used to run distributed services in the cloud) and jclouds provide the route to the execution environments, provisioning what has been shaped in Brooklyn. The idea is to enable developers to provide the applications and constraints and for Cloudsoft to provide the policy and delivery interfaces portable across different clouds. In a typical application development environment, a schema and WAR file are injected into VMs and associated with databases and other functions such as adding Web servers or Hadoop instances. This process, in Cloudsoft's experience, will often be described in a Word file together with the necessary operating limits and policies, and given to the operations team to implement. Using Brooklyn, developers can capture these tasks in a script that can then be run in Amazon or another cloud. PaaSification There are a number of key issues with PaaSification some are under Cloudsoft's control, and some aren't. Those it is able to address with the release of Brooklyn include: the way developers can create applications without wasting time on implementation details; the way operations can maintain SLAs and ensure governance and compliance while optimizing for cost and performance, and the way users can avoid lock-in (and exploit the cloud to its fullest extent). In theory PaaS brings relief by abstracting the developer from implementation details; however, the tradeoff has been that, for the most part, developers have been locked into one environment - hosted PaaS is automated vendor lock-in. We think PaaS is coming into view for the following reasons: ISVs get it - packaging, integration, mobility PaaS-enabled marketplaces drive value creation Polygot programming: developers Continuous development/delivery is required vs. traditional models IaaS use typically leads to an examination of PaaS Private PaaS, roll-your-own, is disrupting the hosted, lock-in model Whether PaaS is becoming the underlying model for apps built for the cloud Business model Cloudsoft's target audience is firms seeking to offer highly flexible and portable transactional Copyright The 451 Group 2

3 services internally and/or externally, including sports betting and financial services (gamers of all hues are innovators) as well as service providers and cloud builders. It's effectively offering a way for users to create their own Force.com environments, which could be offered to both internal and external customers. It says existing use cases include real-time risk analysis, PaaSifying existing applications, cloud portability and global data compliance. Cloudsoft is providing the multi-cloud development and enablement piece for Alcatel-Lucent's CloudBand Management System, which integrates the resources of its customer (a service provider/telco) with Alcatel-Lucent's services, enabling that customer to become a cloud provider by provisioning, managing and billing for cloud services. Besides being integrated with HP's CloudSystem Service Provider edition, CloudBand has also been integrated, via Cloudsoft, with OpenStack, VCE Co and Citrix Cloud.com's CloudStack (also OpenStack). Alacatel-Lucent funded the OpenStack plug-in for jcloud. The open source route is no vanity exercise. In financial services one of Cloudsoft's key target markets and very much part of its heritage it finds that all new core transactional infrastructure must be open source, for visibility and transparency reasons, unless it's specifically attached to legacy IBM or TIBCO functions. The 2008 startup recently been making money by consulting to support Alcatel-Lucent, HP and VMware for jclouds (after all, jclouds creator Adrian Cole is now on staff as chief evangelist and CTO, jclouds). Cloudsoft claims a win ratio of three Brooklyn sales to three key enterprise prospects, one of which will go public with its deployment shortly. Its baseline price for Brooklyn is $0.50 per VM per hour or a prepay price. It will use Brooklyn and a number of reference customers and additional partners (possibly systems integrators) that it expects to land as the launchpad to raise a series A round of funding in the second half of the year. Competition This is an embryonic space, with hosted PaaS now butting up to roll-your-own approaches that are helping to break down the lock-in barriers to use. PaaS 'stack' plays are thin on the ground, however, because most stacks are focused on IaaS-enablement. We recently looked at Hedera's Kanopya private PaaS play, as well as Appcara (though its approach looks more like mobility through management rather than middleware), CumuLogic, ActiveState Software's Stackato, Mendix and Joyent. Other players here include OrangeScape, CohesiveFT, Arago, VMware (WaveMaker), Cordys and OutSystems. Companies such as enstratus and others in the cloud orchestration/broking/lifecycle management sector would likely be more complementary than Copyright The 451 Group 3

4 competitive. SWOT analysis Strengths If momentum builds for using PaaS environments as the underlying model for applications built for the cloud (like client/server was for Unix), Cloudsoft will come squarely into view. Opportunities The cloud is boiling down to some fairly simple propositions: do it faster, more flexibly and on more devices. Cloudsoft's proposition is coming into view, and will be credentialed by enterprise use cases in the near future. Weaknesses The PaaS market seems to be coming into view but there have been some false starts along the way. Threats We've discussed 'best execution venue' in our research for a couple of years now. The enterprise need for cloud services that meet various workload and SLA characteristics reinforces our belief that successful cloud strategies will support best execution venue practices. These will enable users to make rational decisions about where to schedule (or automate) the delivery of workloads to the most suitable clouds (internal/external), depending on SLAs and policy requirements, such as latency, risk or locality. Cloudsoft's Brooklyn is part of this family tree but then most everyone we speak to also wants to be this control point. T1R take By adding the Brooklyn control plane, Cloudsoft is effectively providing a toolkit for users to create their own Force.com-like PaaS platform for internal and/or external use but with multi-cloud deployment options. It certainly appears to have found its calling with Brooklyn and jclouds. End-user references are forthcoming, on the back of which it will seek VC funding to take its game to the broader market. It feels distinctly Enigmatec 'V2' but open source. Special from 451 Research's Market Insight Service. Copyright The 451 Group 4

5 Reproduced by permission of 451 Research; This report was originally published within 451 Research s Daily T1R. For additional information on 451 Research or to apply for trial access, go to: Copyright The 451 Group 5

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