Survey reveals VMware private cloud solutions are winning
Last month Information Week released its 2014 Private Cloud Survey. Their reported big revelation from the survey was the increased usage of private clouds from 21% to 47% in the one year since their last survey. We however, found something in the report that was much more interesting.
Sixty-five percent of respondents were using VMware products in their private cloud deployments.
And while that large market share is not necessarily too surprising, it’s more so after reading about the options respondents had in the survey. The survey indicates, “We offered 19 options, and 65% of respondents are using VMware products as part of their private clouds, and that even with open source options in consideration.”
And it goes on to further declare, “It’s fair to say that the glowing results revealed by this survey are largely attributable to one vendor: VMware.”
As a certified VMware provider we’re well aware of the benefits that VMware products provide. Using vSphere to manage your private cloud can result in the cost savings, but more importantly it enables real agility and flexibility to meet changing business objectives – ultimately creating more successful businesses.
In fact, a Forrester study indicates that the number one benefit of a true private cloud is the agility provided to test and development teams. Secondary benefits are improved resource management and getting products to the market faster.
A powerful example of this from VMware is a case study for Microstrategy. After just four weeks of deploying their private cloud using the VMware product line they realised productivity and efficiency gains.
One specific instance is how their engineers were able to completely automate their morning routines. Tasks that used to take them one hour each they were able to complete in just four clicks. Saving one hour for one employee alone isn’t that significant. But when multiplied by the number of engineers and the number of employees that could start their work one hour faster (because the resources were available that much sooner) the increase in efficiency was substantial.
Private clouds are showing increased benefits to businesses, though creating an internal private cloud doesn’t necessarily guarantee cost savings. Building the IT infrastructure in-house still requires much of the traditional costs associated with legacy deployments, even when heavily virtualised. Creating a private cloud with an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) provider can be the bridge that brings the best of both worlds together, offering cost savings as well as improved agility and flexibility.
For example, in-house private clouds still require hardware and software purchases including maintenance agreements and lifecycle upgrades. Anyone who has dealt with running and maintaining IT departments knows how expensive software selection, integration and maintenance can be. Using an IaaS service potentially alleviates some of the software costs as well as hardware. For instance, all Netplan private cloud customers have access to VMware vSphere Enterprise Plus features. Offering our customers access to all the features of Enterprise Plus takes the pain out of having to price out and decide which exact vSphere package they can afford as well as providing the industry’s best suite in terms of reliability. Customers select what products they need, and if at any time they need to use new features, they simply access them using their trained IT staff, or ours.
And this brings up another major hurdle in creating private clouds. IT staff need to be retrained on the necessary tools and to operate the internal private cloud like a service. This training often requires cultural shift away from how IT is perceived by the company and the IT department itself. This cultural shift can be one of the most difficult to make as Forrester’s study indicated. The study found that 43% of respondents used an external cloud provider to build their private cloud. They also concluded that those who used pre-integrated solutions were able to achieve results much closer to a true cloud rather than merely an extension of an existing IT infrastructure. And those that were most “cloud-like” experienced the greatest benefits.
So what really counts as a private cloud? As a cloud provider, we actually see broad spectrum that is as varied as the businesses that use them. The most stringent is what we call a “private private cloud”. In addition to entirely dedicated servers, these have private storage, and even private network switches. This arrangement provides an isolated private cloud securely under the control of a company, but is simply remotely hosted. Other businesses need dedicated servers and storage, but are perfectly fine operating over common networking infrastructures. It’s possible to build a private cloud to meet any configuration of requirements.
If you’re ready to see what VMware and a hosted private cloud can do for your business, contact us for a free consultation. You just might find you’ll have “glowing results” too..