After a number of delays, I finally was able to speak with Mike Ferris, Red Hat's Director of Product Strategy for Red Hat's cloud computing initiatives. Red Hat has done its best to address the issues I mentioned in my post Virtualization and Cloud Computing Challenge Licensing Models. Furthermore, the post Red Hat extends subscription option to private, public clouds offered by my colleague, Paula Rooney, lists some of ways Red Hat is addressing the business issues posed by the adoption of virtualization and cloud computing.
Here's a quick summary of my conversation with Red Hat
- Red Hat is doing its best to make it easier to use virtualization and public cloud services by offering common tools and services across physical, virtual and specific infrastructure as a service offerings (Amazon's, IBM's and NTT's IaaS offerings at this time)
- Red Hat is working with its partners to make working with on-premise and off-premise systems as similar as possible to reduce business risks associated with Cloud Computing
- Red Hat is offering its update server in the certified cloud environments to make sure that on-premise and off-premise instances of RHEL can be kept up to date and secure.
- Red Hat has enhanced its management tools so that they can deal with both on-premise and off-premise instances of RHEL
While these steps can be seen as only a first step in creating a totally transparent hybrid local/cloud computing environment, Red Hat clearly has considered what issues stand as impediments to the adoption of virtualization and cloud computing and has taken positive steps to address those issues.
These positive steps don't solve all of the problems organizations face in the adoption of virtualized and cloud computing environments, however. Other suppliers, such as CA, IBM, HP, Microsoft, Oracle and many others would have to take similar steps with their software licensing, software capabilities and with their own ecosystems. Unfortunately, some of these suppliers haven't taken these steps.