[clouds] Clouds and / vs. virtualization

Paul Hoffman <paul.hoffman@vpnc.org> Mon, 22 February 2010 17:55 UTC

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Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 09:56:16 -0800
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From: Paul Hoffman <paul.hoffman@vpnc.org>
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Subject: [clouds] Clouds and / vs. virtualization
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Greetings. Before we get into provisioning, we need to know both what types of systems and what type of networks we are talking about. Now that "cloud" has become nearly meaningless as a marketing buzzword, we have an opportunity to define it for our own purposes.

An earlier definition of "cloud" was a virtualized computer that was managed by an entity outside one's own enterprise. Later, "private clouds" were invented, which eliminated the "outside one's own enterprise" but also significantly changed the security model. Later still, "XaaY" (for many values of X and Y) latched onto the "cloud" buzzword, describing applications and services by themselves, not virtualized computers.

An IETF effort that tries to cover XaaY seems doomed to failure due to over-generality, while wasting a lot of participant effort. Instead, I think defining a cloud as "one or more virtualized computers where many components of each computer are managed separately" gives us a reasonable basis from which to work on how to provision such clouds and the networks over which the clouds run.


--Paul Hoffman, Director
--VPN Consortium