As time moves along, it has become quite apparent that IT enterprises—especially the largest, most depended-upon providers—have had to find a way for their products work together in the huge global marketplace.
IT in 2018 is all about interconnection, cooperation and so-called “coopetition”; no company can be an island in this international landscape and expect to grow and prosper. The companies that used to have this approach—such as Microsoft, Oracle, SAP and a list of others—have learned the hard way that being proprietary meant that they’d likely be bypassed by potential customers who already had a mix of cooperative vendors in their IT systems. Being a team player has never been more integral to enterprise business success than it is now.
To a great extent, IBM and VMware used to be proprietary vendors, even though they both have been important contributors to the open-source software community for decades and because many, if not all, their products work together.
Teamwork is What Gets Workloads to the Cloud
Here’s new evidence of teamwork in the waning months of 2018: The two companies revealed this week at VMworld that they are launching VMware vCloud Availability for vCloud Director on IBM Cloud, which is designed to enable a multi-tenant VMware environment for disaster recovery and other use cases.
The vCloud Availability uses existing VMware infrastructure and tooling on-premises and enables customers to failover workloads to the IBM Cloud. Using their existing VMware environment, this package provides customers the benefits of the public cloud—scalability, speed and cost-effectiveness—without the need to refactor applications and workloads.
In days gone by, VMware would have offered this exclusively on its own cloud (and it still does), and IBM might have had something comparable. But VMware is a specialist at its own cloud data management, and in this case IBM is better at providing the cloud-services backing. Together, they offer a pretty impressive package, and that’s what customers want: best of breed with brand-name providers that can be trusted and whose products work easily together.
“At the end of the day, my job is to move workloads to the cloud,” IBM Cloud General Manager Don Boulia told eWEEK. “They generally come from two angles: One is what we call ‘enterprise out,’ and VMware fits that. These are existing VMware-footprint customers who want to gain leverage as they move to the cloud.
'Cloud-in,' 'Cloud-out' Use Cases
“In our ‘cloud-in’ use cases—net-new, cloud-native, bare-metal—we see Kubernetes and containers being a base for a lot of that; customers want to put in CICD and agile as a way to build out next-generation apps,” Boulia said. “The worlds come together. I get a lot of questions about whether containers replace VMs, and back and forth. At the end of the day, these things both have a role to play, and we look to integrate the two of them together in a lot of these use cases.”
Earlier this year, IBM unveiled the IBM Cloud Migration Factory, which uses IBM-trained migration services professionals to help clients move their infrastructures and applications to the cloud. The Cloud Migration Factory is designed to help clients stay agile and flexible, without risking business disruption, security or performance, Boulia said.
“With many enterprises currently adopting multiple clouds, it's clear that there is no one-size-fits-all cloud strategy,” Boulia said. “Enterprises want, and are investing in, the ability to have a seamless and consistent experience across their public, private and hybrid cloud services.”
As part of IBM Cloud Migration Services and in cooperation with VMware, IBM Services recently launched JumpStart, a simple solution to enable clients to efficiently migrate their initial workloads on VMware on IBM Cloud. JumpStart includes platform design and deployment of the VMware vCenter Server on the IBM Cloud and the initial migration of client workloads.
It also enables existing and future applications and workloads to run in the IBM Cloud without any changes, using clients' same tooling, skill and processes, Boulia said.