Healthcare.gov, the Department of Health and Human Services site for the federal health insurance marketplaces offered under the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare), will be finding a new home next year.
The agency has awarded Hewlett-Packard a $38 million contract to host Healthcare.gov starting in March, The Wall Street Journal reported last week. Verizon's Terremark unit now hosts the site but the decision to move to a new provider was made before the Oct. 1 public launch of Healthcare.gov, which has suffered ongoing and widely criticized outages. The Verizon datacenters have experienced numerous outages since the launch and, according to the report, agency members were aware of prior problems.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 12/05/2013 at 12:29 PM0 comments
Salesforce.com and Hewlett-Packard have inked a deal to let customers build virtual instances of the Salesforce.com CRM platform.
The companies announced the pact at Salesforce.com's annual Dreamforce conference, taking place this week in San Francisco. Using HP's "Converged Infrastructure" of servers, storage and network gear, the companies will collectively build the Salesforce.com Superpod.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 11/21/2013 at 1:13 PM0 comments
While there's little hard data to show market share for the use of public cloud computing services, most would agree that Amazon Web Services (AWS) is by far the most widely used Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) to date.
Analyst Ben Schachter of Macquarie Capital said AWS' revenues this year could hit $4 billion. The Wall Street Journal reported this week, though, that Schachter's figure sounds much higher than prior estimates, which pegged revenues in the $1 billion to $2 billion range. As rivals such as Google, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Rackspace and Microsoft are gunning for that business by expanding their own services, Amazon is clearly getting under Big Blue's skin, in particular.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 11/14/2013 at 11:31 AM0 comments
The Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) yesterday launched an initiative that aims to pave the way for organizations to use cloud computing services to protect their own infrastructures.
A new working group called the Software Defined Perimeter (SDP) project represents a departure for the organization that was formed with the mission of improving cloud security. The SDP Working Group seeks to provide a standard way to use cloud services to protect their infrastructures in the age of bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and employees' own use of cloud services.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 11/14/2013 at 11:40 AM0 comments
Amazon Web Services said it wants to shake up the struggling VDI market with a cloud-based alternative that requires no hardware, software or datacenter infrastructure. Amazon's solution is Amazon WorkSpaces, which it claims it can offer services at half the cost with better performance than traditional virtual desktop infrastructure platforms today.
Amazon Web Services senior VP Andy Jassy revealed the new cloud-based VDI offering in his opening keynote address at the company's second annual re:Invent customer and partner conference taking place in Las Vegas.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 11/13/2013 at 12:00 PM0 comments
Red Hat Software released an upgraded version of its CloudForms tools used to deploy and manage private and hybrid Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) clouds with support for OpenStack. The new CloudForms 3.0 debuted at the OpenStack Foundation Summit, taking place in Hong Kong this week.
Also at the large industry event, Red Hat said its OpenShift Platform as a Service (PaaS) software can now be deployed on OpenStack clouds. The move lets developers and IT pros use OpenStack infrastructure to create PaaS environments.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 11/07/2013 at 11:11 AM0 comments
Systems integrator CSC has filled a key hole in its cloud service portfolio by agreeing to acquire ServiceMesh, a key cloud service automation provider that facilitates running various apps on multiple public cloud services.
The deal gives CSC the ServiceMesh Agility Platform, software that automates the deployment and management of enterprise apps running on public, private and hybrid clouds. The ServiceMesh policy engine provides governance, compliance and security of enterprise information running in various cloud environments, the company said.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 10/31/2013 at 1:24 PM0 comments
In a move aimed at broadening the enterprise reach of its application marketplace, Salesforce.com on Thursday launched its Salesforce Private AppExchange. The new exchange lets IT organizations roll out their own apps, which can be accessed on mobile devices and Web-based clients.
Built on the foundation of its existing Salesforce AppExchange, the new private iteration lets enterprise customers build and distribute internally developed software that can be accessed via the single sign-on service the company announced earlier this month called Salesforce Identity. The private enterprise marketplace is designed to let IT organizations consolidate access to applications and give employees broader choices of tools that are on the common platform.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 10/31/2013 at 1:21 PM0 comments
Remember when EarthLink was the Internet service provider many people used if they didn't want to rely on AOL for their dial-up access?
EarthLink, which has a formidable communications backbone these days, is also looking to make its mark as a cloud infrastructure service provider.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 10/24/2013 at 10:13 AM0 comments
Cloud Technology Partners is best known for its consulting services. But the company has a new business aimed at making it easier for developers to migrate their .NET and Java applications to different cloud service providers.
The company's new PaaSLane tool aims to remove the time-consuming and labor-intensive process of evaluating software source code to ensure an application can work properly in a cloud environment. That's especially important as providers roll out new services and update existing ones.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 10/24/2013 at 10:51 AM0 comments
The OpenStack Foundation on Thursday released the eighth version of its open source cloud infrastructure operating platform.
The new OpenStack Havana release has 400 new features, but the most noteworthy are support for monitoring, orchestration and global cluster support with the platform's new object storage system.
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 10/17/2013 at 12:12 PM0 comments
At this week's VMworld 2013 Europe conference in Barcelona, VMware announced key updates to several of its products. Most important is improved performance monitoring of Hyper-V, SQL Server and Exchange within VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite 5.8. VMware also updated its vCenter Log Insight analytics tool.
The vCenter Operations Management Suite was able to monitor and manage Hyper-V workloads as a guest OS by placing its Hyperic agent in the box. But now, through Microsoft's System Center Operations Manager or VMware's Hyperic management packs for vCenter Operations Manager, it can manage Hyper-V hosts and virtual machines. It also adds support for Amazon Web Services (AWS) EC2 infrastructure as a service (IaaS).
The new version collects data on the CPU, network, memory and other components, and feeds that into its analytics engine to separate normal performance behavior from unhealthy activity and then provides alerts.
Expanding support for Hyper-V is a smart move that will be welcomed by VMware and Microsoft customers alike, says Pund-IT principal analyst Charles King. "By expanding its support for and visibility into Hyper-V and public cloud services like AWS, VMware is highlighting its continuing technical leadership," King said. "Since these new features are also coming with no additional premium, adding them also enhances the value proposition of VMware's solutions and services."
In tandem with the vCenter Operations Management Suite upgrade, VMware also updated its recently launched vCenter Log Insight analytics tool. The new Log Insight 1.5 release provides real-time analytics to provide searchable information and dashboards. Released in June, the Log Insight upgrade supports "content packs" for specific systems such as Exchange Server and SQL Server, as well as products from Hytrust, EMC, NetFlow and VMware's own Nicira software-defined networking platform, said Mark Leake, director of product marketing in VMware's cloud management business unit.
"These new out-of-the-box capabilities enhance the discovery and topology," Leake said. "So you get deeper discovery of app instances and components and you can apply the analytics that we have in vCenter Operations Manager to them."
Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 10/16/2013 at 4:49 PM0 comments