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What Does the VMware vCloud Hybrid Service Mean to You?

By: Chris Colotti

This is a repost from Chris Colotti’s blog, chriscolotti.us

So I decided to let the dust settle a little bit after last month’s VMware Hybrid Cloud Service announcement before I posted something this week.  I wanted to coordinate this post with the upcoming VMUG’s I am presenting at specifically on the Hybrid Cloud topic.  I was not intending to talk specifically about the VMware Hybrid Cloud Service, my sessions are dealing more with helping you out there understand ways to consume the Hybrid Cloud regardless if it is the VMware service or a vCloud Provider you already know and love.  My goal in these sessions is not to get bogged down in the details of the VMware service but expand into a live discussion about how we all as IT Professionals can leverage and consume the Hybrid and think about how to design for it.

Think About Your Use Cases for Hybrid Cloud

In my sessions in the coming weeks I will be talking about a few possible options for use cases to leverage the Infrastructure as a Service aspect of this new Hybrid option.  Mainly the advent and implementation of the vCloud Networking and Security 5.1 Edge Gateway really facilitates a lot of the new design options.  You can read more about this in some of my previous posts about Designing Your Hybrid Cloud.  However, as an ex-customer and IT administrator I see a few uses cases right off the top of my head where you can leverage these provider managed compute resources.

  • On Premise Capacity Limitations
  • Expense Options
  • Provider Supported Infrastructure

These are just a few I will start talking about in the sessions and I want to gather more feedback here and in the sessions about other possible reasons you may look at these new options including the VMware Hybrid Coud Service offering.

Advantage To VMware Based Solutions

Let’s be honest for a moment.  We all have used Amazon Web Services (AWS) at some point for something.  I use certain portions of AWS for this and other blogs.  I leverage things like Content Delivery for images and Podcasts with CloudFront and block storage for backups with S3.  I do not however use EC2 for my compute and infrastructure.  I use a vCloud Director based Cloud with Virtacore for my IaaS component.  The reason I do that is because I like the ability to move my Virtual Machines from on premise to VMware based clouds for testing and other reasons.  I don’t have to modify anything to do so and neither will you.

The real game changer here in my opinion is for all of the vSphere only shops out there.  You can “Expand” your compute into a VMware based Cloud Solution from any vCloud Provider, and move your workloads to their compute resources.  You can even extend your applications using the Datacenter Extension feature in vCloud Connector and leverage MULTIPLE vCloud Partners.

Leverage Multiple VMware Providers

Som people think the VMware Based clouds are a “lock-in” solution.  On the other hand I think you end up having MORE choices.  With AWS Elastic Compute you do have region options, but the provider is still the same and getting your workloads out of AWS is not easy.  Unless you work strictly based on code repository, but if you have a Server Config you know and love it’s not easy.

Why would you not use multiple VMware Cloud Providers and push your same services as exact copies out to them for redundancy?  Each Provider will have not only different regions but completely different architectures in some cases.  Maybe you treat the VMware Hybrid Cloud Service as your Teir 1 and use others are your redundant Tiers?

How Will You Leverage The Hybrid?

At the end of the day I am always about education and critical thinking.  My goal in the next three weeks is to present and gather some of the design options and ways of understanding how to build your Hybrid.  From there we can discuss the use cases, and ways to consume this new model.  I for one think this is a very exciting time to be able to truly extend your VMware vSphere based datacenter to the cloud more seamlessly than before.  I still am realistic and understand that some people may still leverage other aspects that AWS brings to the table if their application needs some of that functionality like Content Distribution.

I know I’ve been quiet lately, but I do hope you come out to the VMUG’s and I will be sure to add some follow-up posts on this as the weeks go on and I gather feedback from the live whiteboard sessions.  Please do comment here as well to help add to the ways you think you can use the new Hybrid cloud model.  Let’s keep it generic though and not focussed on the VMware Hybrid Cloud Service Offering.

Chris is a Consulting Architect with the VMware vCloud Delivery Services team with over 10 years of experience working with IT hardware and software solutions. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Information Systems from the Daniel Webster College. Prior to VMware he served a Fortune 1000 company in southern NH as a Systems Architect/Administrator, architecting VMware solutions to support new application deployments. At VMware, in the roles of a Consultant and now Consulting Architect, Chris has guided partners as well as customers in establishing a VMware practice and consulted on multiple customer projects ranging from datacenter migrations to long-term residency architecture support. Currently, Chris is working on the newest VMware vCloud solutions and architectures for enterprise-wide private cloud deployments.