The Stack Archive

Top cloud services to collaborate in OpenCloud Project

Wed 30 Jul 2014

A new industry group of service providers and IP carriers which aims to define open cloud industry standards met for the first time this week.

Sponsored by the CloudEthernet Forum (CEF), the OpenCloud Project aims to construct a live test environment that will help the industry develop guidelines for improved cloud, data centre and network services.

With live traffic and common networking and computing equipment, the researchers will be able to trial new technologies which look to increase cloud reliability, flexibility and ease-of-use.

The open test programme came about as a way of overcoming common difficulties experienced by those companies migrating to the cloud, explained CEF President James Walker.

“There are many challenges for today’s enterprise cloud customers which are in danger of severely limiting the burgeoning cloud services’ market potential. The root cause is network service providers, cloud service providers, data centre operators and enterprises all use different APIs and interfaces to communicate,” he said.

“Our response is to iteratively develop the Reference Architecture, the Test Bed and the standards simultaneously to keep ahead of business needs. The aim is to evolve a fully interworking cloud environment and to advance best practices to manage OTT and cloud services,” added Walker.

It was also emphasised at the meeting how important collaboration among cloud providers is in creating standard practices for the delivery of effective services.

“Cloud services draw on multiple new technologies, all of which are in a constant state of development. OpenCloud is about testing new implementations in a real interconnected environment, exploring and accelerating solutions to problems that directly impact the business of buying and selling cloud services,” added Iometrix President, Bob Mandeville, who headed up this week’s OpenCloud Project meeting.

The OpenCloud Project’s first lab, hosted by Comcast, Verizon and Tata, is conducting research into remote relocation and multiplication of virtual machines across the cloud. The published results of the Project will be able to provide an overview of “what does and does not work and will invite participation in addressing these challenges,” said Jeff Schmitz, CEF chairman.

“Those who commit to the project now will help shape tomorrow and the $200bn cloud services market,” he continued.

Bill Burns, president and CEO at Embrane, one of CEF’s newest members also commented: “Global cloud connectivity is vital. There is concern that the industry is fragmented […] Today has shown us there is a way forward with real industry backing […] It’s also a great opportunity to work with other industry leaders, not just to see, but to influence what’s happening at the leading edge of cloud development.”



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