Security and integration are two of the biggest challenges of cloud computing. They drive many enterprises to manage their most sensitive assets internally -- creating a complex portfolio of systems spanning public and private clouds. IBM wants to make the complexity a little easier to manage.

IBM Simplifies the Hybrid Cloud

IBM has announced a new hybrid cloud solution designed to reduce the time and challenge of connecting, managing and securing public and private clouds. The new solution leverages the application and data integration IBM acquired from Cast Iron and the company’s Tivoli cloud management software.

The new solution provides a number of features:

  • Ability to define policies, quotas, limits, monitoring and performance rules for public and private clouds using a single interface
  • Synchronization of user directories between on-premise and cloud applications
  • Application integration using configuration
  • Dynamic reallocation of resources to heavy workloads -- cloud bursting

IBM’s focus on hybrid clouds is smart. As the cloud market matures, a significant number of companies are embracing cloud technology, but are doing it as a mix of public and on-premises solutions. According to analysts at GigaOM, 39% of respondents to their “Future of Cloud Computing Survey” indicated that the hybrid cloud is part of their technology strategy.

Hybrid Challenges Remain

Although the model has a number of well documented benefits, hybrid clouds introduce significant challenges. Organizations have to share information between systems in the on-premise cloud and applications hosted as services in the public cloud, and in many cases that information is constantly changing.

They also have to manage an often complicated mix of policies, permissions and limits that should be the same across both environments. Given the complexity that hybrid clouds bring, solutions like IBM’s new Cast Iron offering will continue to emerge.

IBM’s new solution is targeted at business of all sizes and is available now.