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New IBM platform turns your data center into a cloud

News Analysis
Nov 03, 20173 mins
Cloud ComputingData CenterIBM

Cloud Private helps make the move to the cloud as painless as possible.

cloud computing - metal gears - hybrid - private and public combination - sealed and open
Credit: Thinkstock

What if you could flip a switch and turn your stodgy old data center full of legacy apps into a cloud-enabled one capable of migrating apps and data to the public cloud with ease by containerizing your legacy apps?

IBM says it has just such an offering in IBM Cloud Private, a platform focused on assisting private data centers looking for a relatively simple way to move into the cloud. The idea is to offer a consistent way of managing your application stack, regardless of where they reside. 

IBM Cloud Private takes middleware and other legacy applications, places them inside Kubernetes containers and transforms them into contemporary applications using Kubernetes container orchestration. The software itself is already containerized, including IBM tools and most major open source databases. 

Cloud Private also provides tools and APIs to connect cloud services like Salesforce with a company’s on-premises data center and share data from the cloud services with those legacy applications.

Of course, IBM supports its own public cloud services, available through the SoftLayer subsidiary and BlueMix line, but Cloud Private will facilitate integration and portability of workloads to any cloud environment, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure. 

“Innovation and adoption of public cloud services has been constrained by the challenge of transitioning complex enterprise systems and applications into a true cloud-native environment,” said Arvind Krishna, senior vice president for IBM Hybrid Cloud and Director of IBM Research, in a statement. 

“IBM Cloud Private brings rapid application development and modernization to existing IT infrastructure and positions it to be combined with the services and experience of a public cloud platform,” he added. 

IBM also announced new container-optimized versions of core enterprise software, such as IBM WebSphere Liberty, Db2 and MQ, which are used to run and help secure the world’s most business-critical applications and data. This it says will make it easier to share data and evolve applications as needed across IBM Cloud private and public clouds and other cloud environments with a consistent experience.

What’s included in IBM Cloud Private

IBM Cloud Private is actually quite complex and has several moving parts. They include:

  • Cloud Management Automation – For management across public and private cloud environments to help launch, monitor and manage services.
  • Security and Data Encryption – A security advisor to scan containers across the cloud to surface potentially serious issues and weaknesses, as well as encrypt all data when being moved around.
  • Core Cloud Platform – Includes the container engine, Kubernetes orchestration, Cloud Foundry and essential management tools.
  • Infrastructure choice – Includes support for Cisco, Dell EMC, Intel, Lenovo and NetApp, as well as IBM systems.
  • Data and Analytics – Integrations with database services, such as IBM Db2, PostgreSQL and MongoDB.
  • Application Support and DevOps Tools – Containerized versions of software and development frameworks for building containerized apps using DevOps practices.

Andy Patrizio is a freelance journalist based in southern California who has covered the computer industry for 20 years and has built every x86 PC he’s ever owned, laptops not included.

The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of ITworld, Network World, its parent, subsidiary or affiliated companies.