Intel invokes the ghost of Andy Grove to standardize cloud market

OpenStack and Kubernetes all the way, says Chipzilla

It has been a busy day for Intel; first new processors, then solid state drives, and now it has announced plans to set global standards for data center deployments.

At a special event in San Francisco, Jason Waxman, general manager of Intel's cloud platforms group, said that the cloud industry is poised for big growth, with investors pumping $17.5bn into cloud startups in the last five years. But standards confusion was holding things back.

"The market is really hoping this is going to pay out, but it's not going to happen on its own," he said. "We have to get the industry aligned and a big part of that comes down to standards. Andy Grove used to talk about the virtuous cycle and that was about standards – if you created a standard and got the industry behind it and got momentum then it became a de facto standard."

To that end he announced that Intel and CoreOS are collaborating to deploy OpenStack with CoreOS's Kubernetes into a single open source software-defined infrastructure (SDI) stack. The end result will enable firms to get their public and/or private clouds up and running much more quickly.

"Together with Intel, we are accelerating the industry forward in reaching GIFEE (Google's infrastructure for everyone else)," said Alex Polvi, CEO of CoreOS.

"By running OpenStack on Kubernetes, you get the benefits of consistent deployments of OpenStack with containers together with the robust application lifecycle management of Kubernetes."

In addition, Intel and VMware are getting into bed together to produce centers of excellence around the world to build reference patterns for cloud deployment, with a particular emphasis on cybersecurity. The proof-of-concept designs will be supported by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the first center opened in Santa Clara today.

To test out cloud apps, Intel has authored a deal with the Cloud Native Computing Foundation to set up 1,000 server nodes so that developers can run apps for testing before deployment. The first 500 nodes are up and running and the next 500 will be up shortly, once Intel's new Broadwell Xeon chips have been installed in them.

Finally, Intel is expanding its Cloud Builders program and adding a storage function. Over 300 firms have signed up to the program and are sharing information on cloud best practice.

"Cloud is the big, big disruptor," said Diane Bryant, general manager of Intel's data center group.

"In the future we'll look back and say that cloud had a bigger impact than the invention of the PC. It will extend around the digital world and make service massively accessible to all." ®


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