HP buys Eucalyptus: What it means for the hybrid cloud

HP has OpenStack roots; Eucalyptus has AWS integration - is it a match made in the cloud?

HP bought open source private cloud company Eucalyptus for a reported about $100 million in a move that could have dramatic implications for HP’s status in the IaaS market. (Read the press release here)

Eucalyptus makes private cloud management software - basically customers can use it to build a private cloud. The company’s focus has been on creating a platform that is closely integrated with Amazon Web Service’s public cloud. The thinking by Eucalyptus execs was that Eucalyptus would win by being the private cloud for the most popular public cloud.

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The company and project have seen steady growth and it has steadied its release schedule of new software, but it never really took off like gangbusters. Still, the company and its product are respected in cloud circles. Perhaps the advent of many other technologies that can connect on-premises workloads to AWS have held back Eucalyptus adoption.  

As for HP, the company is in somewhat of a similar boat when it comes to its cloud products, but on a much bigger scale. HP has a solid set of offerings branded under the moniker Helion. HP has a private cloud management platform and a public cloud running in its own data centers, both based on OpenStack. Research firm Forrester has recognized HP for its private cloud leadership, but somewhat like Eucalyptus even with all that great technology, HP’s cloud efforts have never really taken off.

Now, the two forces are coming together. In theory, this could be a good marriage: HP brings a huge legacy install base to the table to sell a private cloud platform to. If they combine their technologies, HP will offer a platform based on OpenStack but with tight integrations to AWS’s public cloud.

HP has brought on Eucalyptus’s CEO Marten Mickos to be its new SVP and GM of the company’s cloud business, reporting directly to president and CEO Meg Whitman. For Mickos, it’s got to be somewhat of a personal accomplishment too - he sold is previous company to Oracle and now his latest has sold to HP.

It’s a big move in the cloud world and it will be interesting to see how it plays out. What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

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