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IBM preps cloud services; Targets software development and testing

IBM will unveil a bevy of cloud services targeted at the enterprise, including one focused on making application development and testing more efficient.Big Blue's portfolio is designed to get large enterprises into the cloud faster.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

IBM will unveil a bevy of cloud services targeted at the enterprise, including one focused on making application development and testing more efficient.

Big Blue's portfolio is designed to get large enterprises into the cloud faster. IBM said it put two years of research into its latest portfolio of cloud services. The general idea is to cluster cloud computing service around work tasks, say search, transactions and software development. The New York Times noted, IBM's cloud computing moves echo its jump into Linux in 2000.

Of IBM's lineup, the development and test cloud services may be most interesting. IBM is arguing that software developers are becoming the innovation center of companies, but need a more efficient way to test new applications. The idea: Give developers self serve cloud options since enterprises devote 30 percent to 50 percent of their infrastructure to development and testing.

These development clouds will be offered in three flavors:

  • A private cloud built by IBM inside a company's firewall dubbed the IBM Smart Business Test Cloud;
  • A preview service that runs on IBM's cloud infrastructure. Big Blue named this service the rather clunky "IBM Smart Business Application Development & Test featuring Rational 'Software Delivery Services.'"
  • IBM CloudBurst, and integrated system with service management software.

In addition, IBM is wrapping thin clients and virtualized desktops in a cloud wrapper. The company said it will host virtual desktops in your data center---also known as a private cloud---or in its cloud. The payoff IBM is pitching is the ability to extend the PC lifecycle with its Smart Business Desktop Cloud services.

IBM cites an example of an Eastern Kentucky school district that would make any PC maker cringe. IBM notes that the school system's "10 or 12 -year-old computers now behave as if they were top-of-the line 2009 models because the desktop is only an access point to the private cloud."

Layered throughout IBM's portfolio is service management software, which the company bills as the operating system of the cloud. IBM's service management software is the product of the acquisitions of Micromuse, Vallent and MRO.

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