IBM's New SOA Appliance Delivers Enterprise Cloud Services

IBM announced two new products that allow customers to extend their investment in service-oriented architecture (SOA) into a cloud services environment. These new offerings enable clients to easily create application environments that can be deployed and managed in a "private cloud."

IBM WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance is a new hardware appliance that provides access to software virtual images and patterns that can be used as is or easily customized, and then securely deployed, managed and maintained in a private cloud. IBM WebSphere Application Server Hypervisor Edition is a version of IBM WebSphere Application Server software optimized to run in a virtualized hardware server environments such as VMware, and comes preloaded in WebSphere Cloudburst.

A primary benefit to customers who already have a SOA foundation is that cloud computing enables them to now reuse and share applications. "Like SOA, cloud computing is about re-use, service flexibility and standardization of processes," says Tom Rosamilia, general manager of application and integration middleware at IBM. "Through its vast portfolio of hardware, software and services, IBM is committed to delivering enterprise customers business agility through greater IT flexibility and smart economics."

CloudBurst stores and secures WebSphere Application Server Hypervisor Edition images and patterns to be dispensed into a cloud, IBM says. CloudBurst helps customers develop, test and deploy business applications, ending the use of manual, complex or time-intensive processes associated with creating application environments. Once finished, resources are automatically returned to the shared resource pool and logged for internal charge-back purposes. CloudBurst also manages individual user and group access, giving IT managers the right kind of access controls with optimal efficiency rates.

These new products integrate with development and service management tools from IBM Rational and Tivoli. IBM Rational Automation Framework for WebSphere optimizes configuration and application deployment to customize WebSphere CloudBurst patterns, providing more than 400 field-proven, automated tasks for configuration and application deployment to WebSphere Application Server environments. Using Rational Automation Framework together with CloudBurst can improve delivery efficiencies for development, test and product scenarios leading to faster time to market, higher-quality software and rapid return on investment.

Tivoli Service Automation Manager is designed to support a more modern, dynamic data center and help reduce IT operational costs by automating the processes used to develop and manage a cloud computing environment. It provides the capability to request, fulfill, and manage complete software stacks for the data center to automate both the deployment and management of computing clouds.

IBM is also announcing BPM BlueWorks, a cloud-based set of strategy and business process tools. BlueWorks provides business users with the collateral they need to implement business strategies within their organizations based on industry-proven business process management techniques.

The WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance and WebSphere Application Server Hypervisor Edition will be available in the second quarter of 2009. For information, visit the IBM Cloudburst website.