CliQr is a vendor that offers broad cloud-management solutions. The company has existed for a few years, and has had a couple of changes of direction in that time. Its focus now, however, is firmly on delivering a solution that helps organizations wrap the entirety of their infrastructure with a control fabric. The reasons for this focus are simple to understand: organizations increasingly use a plethora of different approaches towards their infrastructure. They might have some mainframe applications, some on-premises apps, some client/server technologies, and finally some applications built in "cloud native" ways and leveraging public or private clouds. While this diversity of infrastructure gives organizations great flexibility, it also increases complexity. Thus, a solution that manages the breadth or an organizations' infrastructure becomes increasingly attractive.
CliQr's platform offers the full life-cycle of infrastructure, from modeling, deployment, and management. The idea is that applications can be de-coupled from the complexity of the underlying platforms on which they operate, be they physical, virtual, or cloud. CliQr covers a range of industries and has customers in healthcare, manufacturing, and technology. Headquartered in Santa Clara, California, with locations in Canada, India, and Czech Republic, CliQr is backed by Polaris Partners, Foundation Capital, Google Ventures, and TransLink Capital.
CliQr's platform, CloudCenter, is now entering its fourth generation, and this latest release looks to increase the flexibility, visibility, and control over its users' infrastructure. The release covers a few different bases - from administration and governance, through to security and the user interface.
In an indication of just how much vendors like CliQr need to be aware of emerging trends, this release includes a bunch of features that will help organizations support applications built with new approaches. The services pallet includes over 40 out-of-the-box and easily customized images, application services (e.g. AWS RDS, ELB and others) and containers (e.g. Docker), along with the ability to import custom images, services, and common applications. In a nod to the demand for more user-friendly approaches towards solutions like this, CliQr is including a graphical topology modeler - essentially a highfalutin name for a feature that allows users to graphically design their application infrastructures without resorting to hard code.
In terms of broadening the number of clouds and solutions being supported, CliQr is covering most of the bases. This release includes integration and support for:
- Public Cloud Support: Expanded support for IBM SoftLayer and AWS GovCloud and comprising 16 clouds total.
- Additional Supported Clouds: Support for Microsoft AzurePack and CloudStack 4.0, along with existing CloudStack versions, OpenStack and VMware.
- Converged Infrastructure Support: Integration with Cisco UCS Director (UCSD), providing application lifecycle management across converged environments – such as vBlock, Flexpod and VSPEX – supported by UCSD.
- Software-Defined Networking: Support for VMware NSX and integration with Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) for one-click provisioning the full application stack.
CliQr is delivered as both a hosted SaaS platform or as a dedicated on-premises customer deployment. This approach is important, and many of the companies need the broad infrastructure support that CliQr demonstrates precisely because of regulatory and compliance reasons. Therefore, providing for an on-premises installation is a necessary evil (at least if you're from the school that suggests that anything outside of wholesale adoption of the public cloud is a cop out). But it is a pragmatic response to the reality for many organizations.
"CliQr's goal with CloudCenter 4.0 is to provide a cloud management platform as accessible, manageable, and secure as even the best traditional IT environments," says Tenry Fu, co-founder and CTO of CliQr. "For businesses that see the advantages of the cloud, CliQr's technology makes the cloud accessible, secure, and manageable whether they're jumping in with one application on one cloud or rolling out a complex, hybrid cloud-based ITaaS environment, including combinations of private and public execution venues."
The fact that CliQr both covers broad infrastructure offerings and takes an application-centric approach towards management is a double bonus. CliQr is an interesting company and it has a positive future ahead of it.
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