Both Sun (launched with Oracle’s PR help) and IBM have been making big waves in the virtualization space. On the surface these are clear moves on VMware/EMC, the current collector of the the vast majority of revenue around virtualization. But under the surface there are some other interesting things going.
First, does anyone else agree that this is a way to give the “on-premisis” ecosystem (including hardware sales, services groups, and partners) a way to fight back against the scalability and manageability promises of SaaS alternatives? It’s a safe bet that some form of a “do-it-youself SaaS is good” message will be hoisted upon the industry in the upcoming year.
Second, both initiatives talk a lot about “data center management”, which is generally code for deployment automation and monitoring. I’m glad to see increasing recognition of this problem space. But I am surprised that very little has come down the pipe in terms of new development on true deployment or configuration management tooling. The default answer still seems to be to let Global Services (or one of Sun’s services partners) come in and build a custom solution from a grab bag of tools.
Of course their are open source tools like ControlTier (service provisioning targeted at developers and deployment engineers ) and Puppet (system provisioning targeted at systems administrators), but you hear little from the industry titans about the need for these types of tools. Follow the money for the answer why.