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The cloud offers the promise of elastic infrastructure that can scale on demand and delivers a service based approach to technology consumption. It's a model that many enterprises are now embracing and now it's a model the State of California is using, too.
The State of California today announced its CalCloud initiative, which is being built and managed by IBM. The effort will see IBM hardware and software placed inside California data centers that are managed by IBM for the State. California's Department of IT administrators can then enable their users across the state to provision services as needed on the system. At launch, over 20 state departments within California have requested services though the CalCloud initiative.
"CalCloud was a year in the making from procurement to launch," George Cruser, General Manager, Infrastructure for IBM Global Technology Services, told Datamation.
Cruser added that the CalCloud contract is a five-year deal that is currently valued at $37 million. He noted that the CalCloud initiative is designed to scale to meet demand both up and down, providing compute power, storage back up and disaster recovery.
"It gives the State all the computing power they need, so they can focus their attention on their users," Cruser said.
From a technology perspective, there are multiple IBM hardware and software assets involved in the CalCloud initiative. Cruser said that the initial CalCloud deployment includes multiple types of IBM's servers, including both Intel and POWER based system architectures.
In terms of supported operating systems, Cruser said that CalCloud users will be able to choose from Windows, Linux or AIX for their workloads and applications.
The overall orchestration of CalCloud services is being performed by an orchestration product called IBM Service Delivery Manager (ISDM). At the current point in time, IBM is not leveraging its OpenStack capabilities as part of the CalCloud deployment.
The physical footprint of CalCloud will see all of the hardware sitting within State of California data centers. In the initial deployment of CalCloud, two data centers outside of Sacramento are being used.
From an IBM perspective, the goal isn't for CalCloud to necessarily be a unique effort, but rather a model that it can replicated and deploy for other states.
"We're currently working with a number of states and internationally to see if we can take this concept to them," Cruser said. "So they can have a multi-tenant private cloud where someone else is paying the infrastructure investment and they pay as they go."
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Datamation and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist
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