It is so choice. If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.

It’s Tuesday, which means another instalment of Technology Tuesday. This week, we look at ASG and their CloudFactory offering. CloudFactory can be thought of as a way to automate all things cloud including services (IaaS, PaaS and SaaS), different platform types (VMware, Azure) and provisioning multi-vendor environments.

Quite simply, CloudFactory makes it easy for organizations to offer cloud services without a lot of the back-end operations normally required to support this type of service. But there’s more to this than you might think.

Some history on CloudFactory: Firstly, CloudFactory was a design of visionapp which was purchased by ASG in April of 2011. ASG is more known for their management solutions including application management, operation and infrastructure, and enterprise automation management. Visionapp brought to the table the streamlined SaaS platform that helped to tie everything together really.

So back to business. What I really like about this solution is that its a way for providers to easily white label a full cloud offering by creating a service catalogue that is front-ended by an Amazon-like front end. It also allows for aggregation of private and public services and easy delivering of both SaaS and IaaS services. It also does a beautiful job of desktop as a service because it automatically can offer SaaS plugins including MS Office and SalesForce.com services. There are also some great management tools included including a single dashboard view of the entire infrastructure and customer versions to view their own individual services and automatic deployment based on capacity thresholds.

There is a great blurb that explains this platform from ASG themselves that I think sums it all up nicely;

“CloudFactory goes beyond helping customers improve their time-to-market or reduce costs,” explains Arthur Allen, CEO of ASG Software Solutions. “We created a technology-independent cloud service broker and orchestration suite that automates and simplifies the delivery of applications as cloud based services for everyone – whether a remote sales person is looking to access a company’s CRM or a developer requires a ‘sandbox’ to test innovative new technology – CloudFactory offers enterprises a comprehensive and cost effective solution to plan, deploy, control and optimize their IT infrastructure. Our sophisticated modules guarantee a fast and easy creation, delivery and management of cloud environments while leveraging existing investments.

ASG Software Solutions offers complete, end-to-end, cloud orchestration solutions for private, public and hybrid clouds.”

Where do I see this type of solution fitting? Personally, I see the cloud brokers adopting this first, using it to help automate the provisioning of cloud services from multiple vendors. It is also beneficial for organizations who want to operate IT as a business within the organization and allow IT to bill other departments based on resource usage.
There are some impressive case studies from ASG, including some Telecom business model resources that can be found on their website at http://www.asg.com/cloudfactory

Tomorrow we return back to our regular scheduled programming with Platform as a Service.

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