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Abiquo launches AnyCloud to manage public cloud accounts

Fri 4 Apr 2014

Cloud platform company Abiquo believes its new AnyCloud service will change the way enterprises manage IT processes, including approvals for expenditure, and deployment, in-depth auditing and security patch levels.

Ian Finlay, the company’s VP of Product, explained why this important. “When enterprises use the public cloud they lose access to the ability to provide oversight and so we have to give a credit card to a developer or an outsourced developer, but at that point they found out that someone has done something that is inappropriate when it’s too late – perhaps moving data out the public cloud where it shouldn’t be.”

The problem becomes worse if these very same enterprises use multiple cloud accounts and providers, but with a solution such as AnyCloud, a layer of management control is create to ensure that these issues either don’t arise or they are kept under control. The first aspect of this is the provision of a login to give the right people access to the resources that you want them to access, and there’s the ability to standardise templates to permit some power over what they do – offering a single location for auditing, command and control.

Workflow approvals

“Workflow approvals are optional: every time a team member tries to set up a VM it sends you an email with a couple of buttons allowing you to say whether you are happy or not to accept it”, he says.

The company is also working on including a periodic email to show which machines have been running for a long while when there is no obvious need for them. An email could therefore be used to warn an IT manager that they are unnecessarily costing the organisation money, and this allows for action to be taken to rectify the issue. A reporting interface is planned to offer an audit report to show that everything is under control – or not as the case might be.

Feedback appreciated

“The product is free for now because people are trying it out and we are looking for their feedback”, he says. He adds that they have appreciated the opportunity to validate Abiquo, and as a result of this they are keen to see what the company has done with the private cloud, while examining what it has achieved with the public cloud to see how they can influence it. “This allows us to get us closer to our end user community and makes it available to one man shop users”, he comments.

He also hopes that Abiquo AnyCloud will help to solve the problem that hybrid clouds find themselves in – segmented and therefore hard to manage as they sit in their very own silos. The company’s service providers operate from different geographical regions, and he claims that this creates a problem for many of the cloud orchestration platforms that exist on the market today.

Joining clouds

Finlay believes they just can’t handle this segmentation and fail to create a joined up approach: “If you look at one of the offerings in the market you have to log into the different clouds in different geographies separately, but AnyCloud is hybrid between multiple public clouds and we manage the security piece in terms of the cloud account, but access to the machine itself is outside of the orchestration provider.”

Much depends on how enterprise configure their infrastructure, but Abiquo offers that tools that are need to configure them and this offering comes at a time when the reseller channel is selling less hardware to enterprises while attempting to turn themselves into cloud providers.

Safe and secure

With AnyCloud they have the opportunity to complete a safe and secure public cloud transition, which in turn will protect their customer relationships and their future revenue streams. He concludes the conversation by saying that his firm’s solution also offers the service provider market to prevent customers from “leaking around the edge.”

With this in mind Abiquo can apply an image to all of their private and public clouds because there is a growing trend that’s moving towards configuration management and image-building services. The firm hopes to continue to help its customers to get up and running within a 5 week period, so that they can quickly launch and gain or maintain their ROI.

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