March 5, 2014 | Written by: Tushar Pant
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This month, IBM will add new features and functions to its existing Managed Cloud infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offering portfolio called IBM Cloud Managed Services. The additions will affect IBM Cloud Managed Services, IBM Cloud Managed Services for SAP Applications and IBM Cloud Managed Services for Oracle Applications.
If these offerings sound vaguely familiar, it’s because they already exist. IBM has decided to rename the offerings in the following manner:
|IBM SmartCloud Enterprise+
||IBM Cloud Managed Services
|IBM SmartCloud for SAP Applications
||IBM Cloud Managed Services for SAP Applications
|IBM SmartCloud for Oracle Applications
||IBM Cloud Managed Services for Oracle Applications
IBM is also adding features like disaster recovery (failover to and fail back from a secondary site) and high availability. Lite sites and remote Points of Delivery (PODs) will also be available. Lite site and remote PoDs provide clients the ultimate choice of deployment options in an IBM data center and can be set up in any country based on customers’ needs and market-demand. New features are being announced this month and will be available later in the second quarter of 2014.
To be closer to industry demands, IBM is also announcing that its Cloud Managed Services offerings will support HIPAA compliance (for the healthcare industry) as well as PCI (Payment Card Industry) Compliance for credit card transactions or handling of personal information for its US (Raleigh and Boulder), Germany (Ehningen) and France (Montpelier) Cloud Data centers.
New Storage options have also been announced to enable support of dedicated servers for SAP HANA and Oracle Databases on Intel servers. Multiple options in SAN-based block-level storage has also been announced and instead of 32GB, storage can be increased to an increment of 1GB each so customers don’t have to buy full block of 32 GB for adding smaller chunks of storage.
Numerous pricing updates are also going to be announced across multiple available options.
Cloud Managed Application Services Enhancements
Because the SAP and Oracle apps offerings are built on the CMS (above) platform, they will also support DR capability globally. For CMS4SAP offering IBM now offers two Consumption Models: SAP HANA Platform as a Service and Bring Your Own Box (BYOB, IBM only). Clustering for scale-out and high availability has also been announced for SAP.
Similarly for the CMS4 Oracle offering, disaster recovery support has been announced with a recovery time objective of four hours and recovery point objective of one hour 15 minutes on Oracle Application level. Load balancer support for high availability and offloading has also been made available, which is crucial for a 99.9% availability requirement. CMS4 Oracle DB Appliance is also coming with the latest release, which addresses the issue of lack of Oracle technical support for VMWare. High availability Oracle RAC also forms a part of this latest release. European data privacy requirements are also expected to be met as a result of the additions.
The above enhancements to the offerings makes IBM’s managed Cloud suite rich in feature and functionality requirements which are essential to the need of the enterprises and puts them on an equal pedestal like any other competitor—if not better.