Cisco and Microsoft Extend Relationship with New Cloud Platform

(Ping! Zine Web Hosting Magazine) – Cisco today announced an extension of its cloud and data center relationship with Microsoft to include a new technology platform designed to accelerate service delivery and streamline the journey to the Intercloud for cloud providers.

Today’s next-generation cloud services require close compatibility between hardware, software, network, storage, and compute. As a result, cloud providers are challenged with managing the complexity and cost of integrating the infrastructure and application layers required to bring new cloud services to market. To address these issues, Cisco and Microsoft are launching the Cisco Cloud Architecture for the Microsoft Cloud Platform — an integrated solution that combines Windows Azure Pack and Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure(Cisco ACI) to help cloud providers rapidly deliver hybrid cloud services while drastically simplifying operations and reducing costs..

Additionally, 14 cloud providers today announced they plan to join Cisco’s Intercloud partner ecosystem, bringing the number of Intercloud providers to more than 60 with a footprint of more than 350 data centers across 50 countries.

Cisco and Microsoft Deliver Integrated Cloud Platform
The Cisco Cloud Architecture for the Microsoft Cloud Platform will provide the building blocks for cloud providers to evolve beyond traditional infrastructure as a service (IaaS) offerings to create combined IaaS, platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS) solutions that deliver more value to their customers.

The integration between Cisco and Microsoft technologies will aim to enable cloud providers to realize unprecedented value. The combination of Windows Azure Pack and Cisco ACI allows partners to deliver services — from network services and disaster recovery, to big data, and enterprise application services — at DevOps speed, drastically reducing total cost of ownership and accelerating time-to-revenue. This collaboration will deliver pre-packaged policy management libraries that allow cloud providers to implement applications more quickly with consistent policy management. In addition, Microsoft System Center 2012 R2 is integrated with the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) Manager to provide the operational simplicity and control that cloud providers need to manage their growing business.

Finally, Cisco and Microsoft plan to support their ecosystem partners with a full lifecycle go-to-market approach that delivers everything from service ideation and demand generation to customer retention. The Cisco Powered and Microsoft Cloud OS Network (COSN) programs fully complement each other to bring an unprecedented layer of support to cloud providers deploying this new platform. This helps partners reduce up-front costs while minimizing the risk of going to market.

The new solution is primarily designed to meet the needs of traditional enterprise applications. It will complement Cisco’s OpenStack-based architectures for cloud native workloads and provide seamless hybrid cloud capability for connecting to Intercloud and Azure. Cisco plans to publish the first reference architecture in April 2015.

Building the Intercloud with Partners
Together with its partners, Cisco is building the Intercloud — a globally connected network of clouds. Architected for the Internet of Everything, Cisco’s Intercloud is designed for high-value application workloads, real-time analytics, “near infinite” scalability and compliance with local data sovereignty laws. By building the world’s largest network of clouds, Cisco’s vision is to deliver the most comprehensive and easy-to-provision-and-consume marketplace of hybrid-ready cloud services.

Today, 14 additional cloud providers announced they plan to join Cisco’s Intercloud partner ecosystem, bringing the number of cloud providers to more than 60 with a footprint of more than 350 data centers across 50 countries. The new Intercloud providers include Bezeq International (Israel), City Cloud Technology (China), CTC – Itochu Techno Solution (Japan), Freudenberg IT (Germany), iland (United States), Proximus (Belgium), QSS (Bosnia) QTS (United States), Skyscape Cloud Services (United Kingdom), Telecom Italia (Italy), Telefonica (Spain), Troila Technology Development (China), ViaWest (United States) and Yunan Nantian Electronic Information (China).

Executive Quotes:
Nick Earle, senior vice president, Cloud and Managed Services, Cisco:

“We want our service provider partners to move up-market with us and offer higher-end cloud services. By partnering with Microsoft we’re able to deliver a tightly integrated, application centric cloud architecture. This unique new platform will help our partners dramatically accelerate the delivery of new and innovative hybrid cloud services for their customers.”

Aziz Benmalek, general manager, Hosting Service Providers, Microsoft:
“Cisco and Microsoft already have a strong relationship in the cloud and data center markets. Today, we’re expanding that collaboration with a solution that will allow our mutual partners to deliver services quickly and grow revenue faster with a cloud-enabled platform. The work we’ve done to integrate Cisco ACI with Windows Azure Pack will allow cloud providers to dramatically accelerate time-to-market, while decreasing costs. Together, Cisco and Microsoft are helping our partners evolve with current market demand and rapidly shifting customer needs.”

Greg Pierce, vice president, Concerto Cloud Services:
“The Cisco Cloud Architecture built with the Microsoft Cloud platform was instrumental in helping us be first to market with a hybrid cloud that features seamless integration between our virtual private cloud and Microsoft Azure. Cisco’s rock solid infrastructure enables us to effectively offer customers near real-time redundancy, a wide array of compliance and superior performance.”

Fabrice Feyten, Head of Product Management, Cloud Solutions, Proximus:
“Proximus has been offering private cloud computing ever since we offer datacenter services. By connecting to the Intercloud, we now offer our customers the possibility to benefit from public cloud services as well, in a highly secure environment that helps them further reduce infrastructure costs and better manage related risks. A hybrid combination of public and private clouds offers the scalability and flexibility to change the balance between on-premise computing and cloud at any time. The new cloud architecture from Cisco and Microsoft will help us turn the promise of hybrid cloud into a reality for our customers.”

Tom Jolly, vice president, Managed IT Services and Cloud, TELUS Business Solutions
“Hybrid cloud has been top-of-mind for Canadian CIOs for the last few years. Together with Cisco and Microsoft we are working to evolve our cloud services portfolio and weave in hybrid capabilities. By integrating their technologies into a unified cloud architecture Cisco and Microsoft are helping us bring innovative services to market more quickly and efficiently.”

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About Cisco
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