We covered the news of USA.Gov moving to Terramark enterprise cloud system here at Cloud Ave sometime back. We noted that their enterprise cloud is pretty much suited for Government purposes because of their compliance with various regulatory requirements.
The distributed grid architecture of the enterprise cloud
offers the necessary redundancy, scalability and flexibility needed for the
national government portal. With Terramark’s Cloud, it is possible to seamlessly
add or remove additional computing resources just with a few mouse clicks. Their
cluster supports Linux, Solaris and Windows and a dashboard to manage the
computing resources offering full control. They are PCI Compliant and have
successfully completed SAS 70 Type II audit which makes sure the infrastructure
is compliant with regulations like Sarbanes-Oxley and HIPAA.
Recently, Obama administration announced the release of Data.Gov, a repository of all the government data aimed towards an open and transparent government. Today’s New York Times has an article on this announcement highlighting the importance of Data.Gov efforts
But Data.gov is different. It is primarily for machines, not people, at least as a first step. It is a catalog of various sets of data from government agencies.
And the idea is to offer the data in one of several standardized
formats, ranging from a simple text file that can be read by a
spreadsheet program to the XML format widely used these days for the
exchange of information between Web services. Other data is presented
in formats that are meant to feed into mapping programs.
The value of this, of course, is that when information is made
available this way, then anyone can analyze it or write a program to do
so. The Sunlight Foundation is running a contest to find the best applications that use this data.
Like USA.Gov, Data.Gov also uses Terramark’s Enterprise Cloud platform to deliver a secure, scalable, public facing web service. Terramark’s success in getting these important federal government portals is partly due to their regulations compliant technology and, also, due to the fact that their datacenters are within 50 miles from Washington DC. In fact, 30% of earnings for Terramark in the last quarter is from the federal government. With a huge federal IT budget and a mindset to push for the use of Clouds for Federal IT infrastructure, there is a huge opportunity for Cloud providers and Terramark is already eating a huge chunk of that pie.
Today, there is an interesting development about Terramark and I just participated in their conference call. VMware, one of the leading providers in virtualization and with a strong push towards Clouds with their VMware vcloud initiative, has made an equity investment of 20 Million on Terramark. Already, Terramark is using VMware’s technology to provide their enterprise cloud offering. This investment will solidify VMware’s hold on Terramark Cloud.
This is interesting because Terramark is already part of US Govt.’s Cloud Computing initiative and it will help VMware push their technology into the Federal infrastructure. This is a smart move on the part of VMware and, as Christofer Hoff mentioned in Twitter, we can expect to see a proliferation of government clouds and private clouds on the enterprise side.