Skytap (see previous CloudAve coverage), Seattle based company focussed on cloud automation, today announced a move towards Hybrid clouds, clearly aiming to take advantage of the enterprise interest in hybrid clouds. They announced a set of security and usability features which will allow enterprise customers to create and deploy hybrid clouds very fast. As more and more enterprises jump into private clouds to optimize their existing infrastructure, the next logical step for them is to use a combination of private and public cloud infrastructure. Skytap is repositioning themselves to take advantage of this trend and hence the hybrid talk.
Recently we heard the news about Skytap’s $10 Million Series C funding round and today’s announcement could be seen as a push to take advantage of this fresh cash infusion and go deeper into the enterprise market. The new features announced today include:
- Self service hybrid clouds with secure networking: Once the IT have the necessary endpoint set up in the private cloud inside the enterprise datacenter, it is easy to use Skytap’s self service portal to set up the hybrid cloud. Using the UI, it is easy to set up, test and configure IPSec connections from Skytap cloud to the enterprise datacenter(s). The UI offers some really fine grained control over security and it is possible to set up a whitelist and blacklist of IP address (or subnets) from which the application can access the enterprise datacenter. This level of control is critical for enterprise organizations as they are wary of any access coming into their firewall from outside.
- VPN-aware Skytap templates, configurations and snapshots: Once this is set up authorized users including developers, testers, etc. can easily create and connect Skytap cloud environments to talk to their in-house systems, thereby, accelerating application development and test cycles. From the IT admin angle, they can give access to developers and test team the necessary access without compromising the security and without additional burden to them.
- Dynamic Switching of Network Connections:This is just the ability to switch off a network connection without any need to turn cloud servers off.
I see this as Skytap reacting to market needs and repositioning themselves to take advantage of hybrid cloud trends expected to be dominant this year and the next. This may very well suit the needs of their existing customers wanting to deploy certain production ready workloads on public clouds but I am not sure if this will be good enough to lure the enterprise customers in large numbers to using the public clouds.
- Skytap raises $10 million, puts ‘IT sandboxes’ in the cloud (techflash.com)
- After comparing apples to oranges, Skytap declares itself the winner (zdnet.com)