Convirture Sets Sights on Cloud Management

Management, that’s where it’s at. That’s the theory behind Convirture’s product lines, continuing with the ConVirt Enterprise Cloud the company announced on August 23rd. ConVirt Enterprise Cloud is designed to let companies manage private clouds and virtualized infrastructure from a single console. If Convirture has its way, silos separating virtualized workloads and private clouds will be a thing of the past.

It took decades for operating systems to become a commodity. It took several years for hypervisors to become a commodity. Cloud stacks are already becoming a commodity. The value, says Convirture CEO and founder Arsalan Farooq, is in management tools for virtualized infrastructure and private clouds. The problem, says Farooq, is siloed infrastructure and having to juggle too many management tools. “When I look at cloud infrastructures, other vendors require a rip and replace or a standalone vertical I need to deploy. Yet another silo. Yet another management too.”

Convirture has been offering open source and proprietary tools for managing KVM and Xen infrastructure for some time. ConVirt Enterprise Cloud builds on that by offering tools to create private clouds out of KVM and Xen virtualized infrastructures. ConVirt Enterprise Cloud can also integrate Amazon EC2 deployments into its console, and works with existing third-party private cloud technologies like OpenStack and Eucalyptus.

Farooq is very clear that ConVirt is all about management tools. “We’re not announcing another cloud platform, not announcing a new cloud broker… we’re trying to take a bite out of fragmentation by bringing everything into one management system.”

What does ConVirt Enterprise Cloud offer? It pulls in all the virtualization management features of ConVirt Enterprise, and adds cloud management. ConVirt offers a easy to use Web-based management console for wrangling virtualized infrastructure and cloud services. This includes hybrid cloud support for managing private clouds and Amazon EC2, creating virtual data centers, setting resource quotas, and network management for cloud clients. Companies can set up templates (similar to Amazon EC2’s instance types), and create high-level policies for resource usage.

Pricing for the ConVirt Enterprise Cloud is yet to be announced. The company plans to announce pricing in September. Farooq says that the pricing will follow a “similar model” to ConVirt Enterprise, which starts at $2,495 for a perpetual license for three concurrent hosts and unlimited virtual machines. Support for ConVirt Enterprise is 20% of the license fee annually.

It does seem that Convirture has identified one of the key problems facing enterprise IT departments right now. Juggling management tools for legacy workloads, virtualized infrastructure and cloud services can be a headache.

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