The cloud brings to light a lot of tensions within the IT world. Previously, in the all on-prem world of yesteryear, the world was simpler. Not technically simpler, but simple in that all organizations had to deal with their in-house IT infrastructure, and that was the price you paid for doing business. There simply wasn’t an alternative.
The emergence of cloud computing changed that. Now there was this tantalizing promise of just using what you wanted when you wanted. The idea of no longer actively managing complex infrastructure was theoretically achievable. Sure there were issues or cost, security, and efficiency to resolve, but it broke a previously monolithic mindset.
But the dream of the cloud gives way rapidly to the reality of the cloud. For a variety of reasons, the public cloud often just doesn’t work on an organizational level. This leaves you with the Baby Bear of infrastructure: The Private Cloud.
But whereas the private cloud solves (or at least addresses) problems of cost-effectiveness and privacy, it has the glaring problem of complexity. This is a different kind of complexity than on-prem deployments, where there is at least a legacy of procedures and deployments. In the private cloud world, tools like OpenStack and Kubernetes aren’t exactly the easiest to wrap your head around.
It’s this complexity that Platform9 is looking to solve. When first learning about the company, it was easy to overlook what they are offering. They’re essentially offering OpenStack via a SaaS platform. It’s easy to overlook the implications of that.
In reality, what this means is that in a number of minutes, Platform9 can get a full OpenStack private cloud deployed. With their tools, you can then easily get to work managing VMs. While I don’t think you’d want to deploy a private cloud in your organization without a considerable degree of comfort with OpenStack, this is still a huge reduction in the barrier to entry.
Once you’ve got OpenStack up and running in a mater of minutes, Platform9 also has you covered. Like any good SaaS application, they want to make OpenStack something that your organizations developers can act upon, but not have to worry about actually managing. To that effect, Platform9 offers comprehensive health monitoring, upgrades and configurable alerts to make managing OpenStack as hands off as it could reasonably ever get.
This kind of SaaS for OpenStack completely inverts the expectations of moving to the private cloud. Traditionally, such a move would require a significant investment in time and expertise to get everything running smoothly in your organization. Platform9 wants to flatten this, making it much more akin to getting started with the public cloud. Of course, getting to the cloud is much different than fundamentally migrating your entire IT infrastructure there. Enterprise organizations still need to rewrite and optimize applications across the board to take advantage of the cloud’s unique advantages. But Platform9 does a great job of reducing the complexity needed to deploy and maintain your private cloud infrastructure.
If you want to get a sense of their complete set of tools for OpenStack, and their similar offering for Kubernetes as a Service, check out their platform Sandbox.