The discussion above means that, in the public cloud market, only Amazon, Google, and Microsoft are confirmed players, with Cisco, HP, and IBM capable of entering if they decide to. For all others, entering the general public cloud IT market is not possible, leaving niche possibilities only.
In the private cloud market, only Cisco, HP, IBM, and possibly Dell, a Japanese vendor, and Oracle/Sun are viable complete-systems suppliers, having access to bladed servers, virtualising software, and integrated networking and storage. Rackable and Verari have outside chances of supplying such systems.
The only viable virtualising software suppliers are Citrix/Red Hat, Microsoft, and VMware.
The only viable networking suppliers are Broadcom (if it buys Emulex), Brocade, and Cisco (on an OEM basis). Blade Network Technologies, Extreme, and Juniper have to acquire FCoE technology or source it, with QLogic looking like the best potential source with it having NetXen technology for integrating FCoE, 10GbE, and protocols such as TCP/IP and iSCSI. They wouldn't source FCoE technology from Brocade willingly since they compete with Brocade in Ethernet switching.
This only viable storage suppliers are 3PAR, EMC, HDS, NetApp, and Sun.
That's it. We're looking at near closed shops. Six players could play the general public cloud supplier game. Only 20 suppliers are in or poised to be in the Data Centre Casino and playing the private cloud supplier game; six players or candidates at the complete systems table, plus two possibles, and the rest at the components table.
Everyone else is already excluded. It's now in the very early days, very early days, but already the stakes are pretty clear and it seems obvious that no one else qualifies at all; the game is already closed to new entrants. ®
What you really want is blanket fog instead of clouds. Are companies not at the mercy of the ISP's with traffic prioritisation etc? Which I guess would be the air between the ground and the clouds.
Public Cloud - Vendor Lock-in
Companies will be locked in to Microsoft and Google once they build apps for the proprietary clouds. Do you think companies be willing to accept this lock-in for the built in scalability that will be lacking in generic clouds such as Amazon's?
This article whilst interesting seems to have missed some fundamental points and ploughed head long in to prescribing what each vendor must do for world domination.
The biggest point completely avoided is, What is Cloud Computing? The reason its glossed over here and also in the recent Cloud Computing Manifesto document is there are two different competing views.
They all agree its about turning data centers into a virtualised utility computing providers. Where you simply pay for the resources you use and can vary the amount consumed just like turning on a tap. Thats the theory anyway.
The problem is there a two different ways of doing this.
On the one hand you have Google and Microsoft who have proprietary technologies which your infrastructure must be built to use, such as the Big Table DB. They operate on top of the cloud infrastructure.
On the other hand you have Amazon, GridScale and everyone else who seem to just be providing VPS servers, which can be configured automatically to scale out. So if your web site got dugg today just fire up 10 more Instances based on the same original image and all will be well. The problem with this is you need to write or purchase the software to actually do the scalling out.
You have also fundamentally forgotten about the software side of it. Sure we need VMs to manage it, but what images are these VMs going to run. If you read the various Google papers on scaling out its a seriously complex problem. Its also not helped by all the various different vendors each with there own vision and matching API. Ideally we really need one standard to control deployment to the cloud.
Another interesting technology you didn't mention is Eucalyptus, its going to be strong part of the Ubuntu Server cloud play and effectively provides a private Amazon EC2 on your own hardware. And the most important thing is its API is compatible with Amazons. Its still in fairly early stages, although they have just received funding to commercialise it in much the same way XEN did.
Of course many companies don't need to worry about scaling out, since they can happily just run one instance to meet all there needs for that particular service. But then thats really just server visualization with a trendier name and not cloud computing.
The really attractive prospect is mixing the public and private clouds, so you can do disaster recovery to Amazon or simply purchase there service when you really need them and supply the very day base load via your private cloud.