IT infrastructure on demand? Yeah right, say devs

The gritty reality of ops, according to sandbox vendor

Yawning Cat by Johnc24 at Flickr, CC-20 License at

IT operations remain completely out of touch with the needs of developers, with CIOs duped into believing a dusting of VMware magic will allow them to construct the sort of whitebox data factories that power the likes of Google, sandbox vendor QualiSystems has declared.

The vendor’s CTO Joan Wrabetz took aim at the industry’s collective self-delusion while unveiling the results of a survey of end-users at this year’s US and European VMworld events, which she said showed IT operations were utterly out of touch with what developers, users and businesses actually need.

The survey found that three-quarters of organisations take at least eight hours to deliver infrastructure to end users, while 43 per cent take more than a week. In 17 per cent of cases, developers can be twiddling their thumbs for more than a month while they wait for ops to carve out some infrastructure for that latest must have release.

Of course, the easy answer is to just spin it all out to the cloud. Except that the respondees reckon it is private cloud where applications are heading. Of the bods taking the survey, 30 per cent of application workloads are running in private cloud, a figure that is expected to grow to 40 per cent over the next two years.

Which makes it less of a surprise that when it comes to application environments, 40 per cent of workloads features a high mix of physical and virtual, with this type of workload expected to grow two per cent. It will also be no surprise that 34 per cent of workloads are network heavy.

“IT is not where people think it is,” said Wrabetz. This was, in part down to CIOs thinking that they can ape the sort of whitebox, software defined architectures powering Google and Facebook’s meteoric rise.

“You’ll get the economies of scale, but they get the efficiencies for a reason - they have no legacy. They throw the old stuff away.”

“VMware comes along and says ‘you can get all this benefit’, but this is the reality of hybrid cloud.”

The answer, according to QualiSystems, is for developers to do what they need to do in a sandbox - like the technology it supplier.

Wrabetz claimed 20 of the global 100 companies are using its products. The company’s tools are used by the likes of Google and Facebook, and underpins Cisco’s own developer network product.

This is the point at which we’d normally say that vendor X was now looking to bring its products down into the mid-market so that everyone can share in the joy. Well, QualiSystems has no plans to do that. “For now, it’s still enterprise,” said Wrabetz.

However, it is looking to create a open community when it launches the next version of its CloudShell product in the New Year.

“However, we want to encourage all developers who want to work with our technology to have access. To support this, we are providing an SDK license for developers that is free and will give them all the resources that they need to develop and test their contributions to CloudShell.

“To support smaller organizations we also provide a special entry level bundle that has preferential pricing. We are working on even simpler entry level options and if the community effort drives us in that direction, we will be happy.” ®

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