How to select an IBM provisioning product for your needs

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In my previous blog post I talked about some IBM provisioning products that could be used to manage cloud environments. Now I would like to go over them and comment about how to select one instead of another.

Let’s pick up these two products: SmartCloud Provisioning (SCP) and IBM Service Delivery Manager (ISDM). There are many points we need to consider when selecting a cloud provisioning product. Let’s think about some of them.

SCP brings the capability of IBM Workload Deployer, which enables image creation and manipulation though a drag-and-drop graphical tool for pattern composition, among other features. Here are some cases in which SCP can be suitable:

  • You have speed of deployment as a predominant consideration—since it has fewer components to be deployed.
  • You require image management capabilities—since it comes with an image management tool (ICON).
  • You have simple integration requirements.
  • You need pattern-based deployment.
  • You want easy migration of existing virtual machines to cloud.

ISDM enables a complete software solution for service management automation in a virtual data center environment. It is delivered as a pre-integrated software stack and provides resource monitoring, cost management and provisioning of services in a cloud.

Here are some cases in which ISDM can be suitable:

  • You need service orchestration capabilities.
  • You require integrated metering and chargeback capabilities—since it has a specific component for it.
  • You need to develop customized workflows (for example: several levels of approvals).
  • You need integration with existing tooling.
  • You need advanced service management capabilities—since it has a specific component for it.
  • You require customization during provisioning—since it has specific capabilities to enable it.

There are other cases that I did not cover here and may be suitable for one or another product. In the overall analysis, in my opinion SCP allows a faster deployment and ISDM allows a more advanced and integrated capability.

IBM has also just released a new product named SmartCloud Orchestrator (SCO) that enriches the opportunities for cloud adoption and could be a good subject to enhance this discussion. What do you think? Leave a comment below or connect with me on Twitter.

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