HP Launches CloudStart to Fast-Track Private Clouds

At VMworld, HP yesterday introduced HP CloudStart, an all-in-one solution for deploying an open and flexible private cloud environment within 30 days.

Cloud computing has captured the interest of many enterprise leaders, not just the CIOs but also CEOs, because it will allow them to respond better and faster to get products and services to market, Alan Wilson, vice president, Infrastructure Consulting, Technology Services, HP, tells 5 Minute Briefing. HP is seeing companies adopting public, private and hybrid clouds at an ever increasing pace and that is good news, he adds. "However, a number of them are miscalculating the benefits  or not quite sure how to progress moving forward to achieve those business benefits," Wilson notes. Businesses also need to better map their path to the cloud to identify a plan to converge both public and private cloud solutions over a period of time to make sure they maintain control of governance and security, and all the components that are critical to any IT enterprise corporate function.

Built on an HP Converged Infrastructure, HP CloudStart is intended  to simplify and speed private cloud deployments for any size environment. HP CloudStart consists of hardware, software and services,  and enables businesses to deliver pay-per-use services reliably and securely from a common portal, while also offering the ability to scale and deploy new services automatically. Real-time access to consumption and chargeback reports allows clients to operate their private cloud in the same fashion as a public cloud.  With HP's open architecture approach, clients are able to integrate their private clouds with third-party enterprise portals, public cloud services, usage billing packages and multiplatform resource management.

According to Paul Miller, vice president, Solutions and Strategic Alliances, Enterprise Servers, Storage and Networking, HP, there are three major components to CloudStart solution. These include Cloud Service Automation for Matrix,  storage integration, and new Cloud Maps for key applications.

What customers are looking for in private clouds is the ability to delvier aplpications on demand as a service, observes Miller. With the first key compoenent of CloudStart, Cloud Service Automation for Matrix,  HP is going beyond the infrastructure into the application, providing the ability to dynamically provision an application as well as to provision the monitoring of the application. This extends the BladeSystem Matrix which has been in the market for a year now, delivering infrastructure capabilities as a service, "and raising it up to be able to be a private cloud" and to automatically deploy applications, configure applications, as well as deploy the monitoring of the applications so customers can do things like metering and chargeback, as well as keep applications in compliance with patches and releases. By automating the application provisioning, he says, customers can save time by up to 80%, and the compliance management reduces their time managing fixes, patches and releases by 75%. 

The second component of CloudStart provdes deeper integration of the HP StorageWorks portfolio, into its BladeSystem Matrix product, namely the EDA and XP arrays, notes Miller. Cost-effective disaster recovery is also a part of the built-in capabilities.

And in a third key component to CloudStart, HP announced Cloud Maps for VMware, SAP, Oracle and Microsoft to speed application deployment and reduce risk by providing engineered, tested and proven configurations. Cloud Maps are imported directly into client cloud environments, enabling them to rapidly build a catalog of cloud services for the business. "Typically you hear people talking about templates," says Miller. Templates work at the infrastructure design level, but this takes it to the next level of application and application knowledge."

Cloud Start is a fixed price, pre-integrated offering, but the modular builidng block components of CloudStart can also be purchased and deployed individually. In addition, best-practice guidance from HP Professional Services provides expertise in deploying, customizing and executing on the long-term vision for creating a private cloud that is tuned specifically for the client's environment;

The HP CloudStart solution is offered now in Asia-Pacific and Japan and expected to be available globally in December.

HP Services experts will present Cloud Boot Camp - a crash course in all phases of deploying, managing and governing a cloud environment is available at VMworld on Thursday, Sept. 2, from 9 to 11 am at the Westin Hotel. More information on HP at VMworld is available here.