Feeds

Intel opens cloud fluffing school

Dude, we know Google

High performance access to file storage

Intel has opened its very own cloud-fluffing school.

Boasting that it helped fluff the mega clouds floated by Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft in recent years, the chip giant wants you to know that its sky-high experience is now available through a new program it calls Intel Cloud Builder.

"We've got a pretty good legacy that started with the first companies that were service providers in the internet space, working with the Googles, the Microsofts, and others in helping them to build out their infrastructure," Intel high density–computing man Jason Waxman told reporters during a briefing in San Francisco this morning.

"It's taken many years for someone like Google or Microsoft to build up that experience. If you're an enterprise or a telco service provider looking to build your cloud, the task can be daunting with many, many management layers. To that end, we're announcing this new program where we're going to be working with many of the leading software providers in the industry to make it easier to deploy clouds in a fast and effective way on an Intel architecture."

Those software providers include Citrix, Parallels, Canonical, Red Hat, VMware, Xen, and, yes, Microsoft. And that's who you contact if you wanna join the Intel Cloud Builder program. You don't contact Intel.

Speaking with The Reg, Intel director of server-software management strategy Billy Cox said that the program is intended for those looking to build so-called "private clouds". That would be floating things that run a company's own applications, as opposed to Amazon-style "public clouds" that serve up compute resources to third parties.

In Intel's world, a cloud is any "shared, dynamically-scalable resource pool." The conspicuous example is Google's globe-spanning infrastructure, which rests on super-secret customized hardware built in tandem with, yes, Intel. With its Cloud Builder program, the chipmaker hopes to help others do much the same thing on a, shall we say, smaller-than-Google scale.

Waxman says that Intel is not only optimizing silicon, software, and systems for scale-happy setups, it's also honing entire data center designs. But as you might expect, Billy Cox stops short of sharing actual Google designs with Joe Enterprise. "But we may share bits and pieces," he tells us.

Through the program, Intel will simulate cloud setups on its own internal and third-party test beds. According to Cox, designs may be as small as one to five server racks, but the idea is to build something that can be scaled to (almost) any size.

In a related announcement, Intel also told reporters that it's working with EMC to offer some sort of super-low-power hardware-and-software building block for those looking to float their own storage cloud. This as yet unnamed product is slated for debut in the second half of next year.

The product will be based on EMC's Atmos software platform, but Intel vp of end user platform integration Prasad Rampalli says that with certain hardware and software optimizations, they've dropped power levels by 15 per cent "at the rack level" - without losing performance.

"How do we ensure that when you run a specific application on a specific server, it's using just the amount of resources needed to consume the lowest amount of power? We believe that it requires software like what EMC has with Atmos that works harmoniously with what the hardware provides," Intel's Prasad says. "What we're doing is giving EMC's software more knobs and dials for them to use."

According to Prasad, these knobs and dials can save you $1.5m across a 100,000-server data center. And until the product actually arrives, who can argue with him? Over the next six months, Intel and EMC will pilos their hardware-and-software combo with certain select users.

EMC is already offering its own petabyte-scale public storage cloud based on Atmos - Atmos Online, naturally - and the software platform is also driving the new storage cloud from AT&T. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
European Court of Justice rips up Data Retention Directive
Rules 'interfering' measure to be 'invalid'
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Bored with trading oil and gold? Why not flog some CLOUD servers?
Chicago Mercantile Exchange plans cloud spot exchange
Just what could be inside Dropbox's new 'Home For Life'?
Biz apps, messaging, photos, email, more storage – sorry, did you think there would be cake?
IT bods: How long does it take YOU to train up on new tech?
I'll leave my arrays to do the hard work, if you don't mind
Amazon reveals its Google-killing 'R3' server instances
A mega-memory instance that never forgets
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.