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Cloud Watch: Piercing the Hype

Craig Matsumoto
1/27/2010

While the industry has fallen in love with cloud computing, it's not too surprising to find evidence that the hype is outpacing reality. ChannelWeb took the obvious step of asking cloud providers what they think of the market.

Separately, this week is seeing news of partnerships and products as equipment vendors continue to gear up for a cloud-computing future.

  • ChannelWeb recently talked to some smaller cloud providers that say the customers haven't come flocking yet -- despite stacks of rosy analyst figures saying the market is primed for explosion.

    "We are seeing more interest in it, but we're not seeing as much adoption yet as the market is reporting," John Ross, CTO of cloud provider GreenPages Inc. , told ChannelWeb.

    As with a lot of markets, cloud computing is being overestimated in its early days. The main disconnection is that large enterprises haven't joined the fun yet. Assuming they eventually do, the cloud computing growth forecasts have a chance.

    Still, there's that hockey-stick curve being drawn by analysts. Gartner Inc. expects cloud computing to be a $150 billion market by 2013, up from $47 billion in 2008.

  • Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), NetApp Inc. (Nasdaq: NTAP), and VMware Inc. (NYSE: VMW) announced this week that they've developed a Secure Multitenant Design Architecture, a pre-tested blueprint for a multitenant cloud. It's another step in trying to make it easier for service providers to set up cloud services -- IT as a service (ITaaS), as the companies' press release puts it.

    Those three companies have collaborated before, and they represent one of a few partnership combinations Cisco has in the cloud area. Cisco and VMware, along with EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC), announced their Virtual Computing Environment in November, and Cisco and EMC have a joint venture called Acadia, which helps enterprises build out private clouds.

  • Extreme Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: EXTR) is fleshing out its product lines to accommodate virtualized environments. New BlackDiamond 8900-xl modules promise throughputs of 128 Gbit/s per card, and that more than doubles the Layer 2 and Layer 3 table sizes previously available. Extreme also announced the Summit X480, a fixed-configuration box with 48 ports running at up to 1 Gbit/s each. Both new products are due to ship this quarter.

    Extreme also announced the Summit X480, a fixed-configuration box with 48 ports running at up to 1 Gbit/s each. Both new products are due to ship this quarter.

    Other recent items in the world of clouds and virtualization:

    — Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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