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VMware unveils Cross-Cloud managed services

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VMware has launched VMware Cross-Cloud managed services, a set of prescriptive offers with enhanced partner and customer benefits that will enable highly skilled partners to expand their managed services practices.

Building on VMware’s success in creating an ecosystem of more than 4,000 cloud service providers that serve tens of thousands of customers worldwide, VMware Cross-Cloud managed services will make building managed services faster for partners and easier to consume by customers. This will improve partner profitability while opening new opportunities for growth and expansion.

The adoption of multi-cloud is helping customers become digitally smart. Multi-cloud services enable faster development of modern apps, accelerate enterprise cloud transformation, and empower more secure hybrid workforces. However, S&P Global Market Intelligence research shows that ensuring security, having skilled personnel, managing costs, and workload/data mobility are the biggest challenges facing organisations adopting a multi-cloud operating model. 83% of organisations surveyed are open to using external managed or professional services to support their hybrid and multi-cloud efforts.

With VMware Cross-Cloud managed services, VMware is making it easier for partners to do business with VMware by combining prescriptive solutions, improved incentives, aligned go to market activities, and more flexibility. Together, these will enable VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Services Providers to drive growth, improve profitability, and increase recurring services revenue while improving time to value for multi-cloud environments and bridging today’s IT talent and skills gap for customers.

“With our global ecosystem of VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Services Providers, we will help customers to evolve from cloud chaos to cloud smart while achieving outcomes faster,” said Zia Yusuf, senior vice president, strategic ecosystem and industry solutions, VMware. “VMware Cross-Cloud managed services is yet another example of how we will empower partners to expand and grow their VMware businesses while collaborating to help customers implement a cloud smart strategy that accelerates their digital transformation.”

Introducing VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Services Offers

VMware will deliver prescriptive offers targeting key customer outcomes and supported through close alignment with VMware’s go-to-market, sales, and support motions. Partners will then use these targeted offers to build unique Validated Service Offerings to deliver differentiated services.

  • VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for Hybrid Cloud will enable customers to lower total cost of ownership (TCO) for on-premises environments, simplify operations, reduce risk with observability, actionable insight, and performance optimisation, and accelerate cloud migrations. These offers will include, (i) VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for private or sovereign cloud, and (ii) VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for public cloud. Partners will build these services using VMware Cloud on AWS or new VMware Cloud Packs, which will include hyperconverged infrastructure, hyperconverged infrastructure with advanced automation, compute with advanced automation, and VMware Cloud Foundation.
  • VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for Native Public Cloud and Modern Apps will enable customers to automate more secure modern platform operations across multiple clouds, achieve centralised governance and deliver better cost controls. These offers will include, (i) VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for Centralised Governance powered by VMware Aria; (ii) VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for Cost Optimisation powered by VMware Aria Cost; and (iii) VMware Cross-Cloud managed services for Cloud Native App Delivery powered by VMware Tanzu.

Benefits, Incentives, and Capability Advancements for Cross-Cloud Managed Services Providers

Partners can differentiate themselves and command greater market recognition and profitability. The new VMware Cross-Cloud managed services badge will signify partners’ expertise in delivering VMware validated managed services offerings (VSOs) and validate the achievement of the forthcoming VMware Managed Services Specialisation (MSS). Additionally, VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Services Providers will benefit from tailored financial and non-financial partner benefits including:

  • Improved Incentives: badged partners can potentially earn up to 40 percent more rewards for providing assessments and proofs-of-concept, up to 100 percent more than non-badged partners for deployment services, and significantly more back-end rebates for selling VMware Cross-Cloud managed services through the new Sell incentive in Partner Connect.
  • More Flexibility: a new Bring Your Own Subscription option will allow customers to deploy existing VMware subscriptions to VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Services Provider environments, enabling them to derive maximum value for the subscriptions through the support and expertise of qualified VMware partners.
  • Go To Market Alignment: a new co-selling program will enable VMware to support Cross-Cloud Managed Services Providers in demand generation, as well as selling and closing activities.
  • Ease of Doing Business: partners can expect even more deal protection on SaaS related sales.

Colin Bannon, CTO at Business, BT, said: “VMware Cross-Cloud services are an excellent fit for BT’s own next generation of cloud solutions, delivered at the near edge.

“As a VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Services Provider we will continue building on strong foundations of collaboration and shared vision. Together, we will help customers innovate, address data sovereignty requirements, and reduce operational costs while focusing on sustainability.”

Anand Swamy, executive VP, head of Tech and Telco Ecosystems, HCLTech.“VMware Cross-Cloud managed services, a core component of HCLTech’s CloudSMART for VMware offerings, will help enterprises unlock the untapped value of multi-cloud and app modernisation.

“These new managed services offerings will further enable HCLTech to help enterprises pursue the path of digital dominance by aligning transformation with overall business objectives while remaining agile through cloud freedom and enterprise control.”

Ofir Abekasis, CEO, TeraSky, said: “TeraSky helps organisations tackle the complexity of new technologies so they can transform with confidence. VMware Cross-Cloud managed services are perfectly aligned to this mission.

“With VMware Cross-Cloud managed services, TeraSky will help our customers meet their technical, operational, and financial targets, address their IT skills gaps, and maximise investments in VMware technology. Achieving the VMware Managed Services Specialisation and becoming a VMware Cross-Cloud Managed Service Provider will improve our own competitive differentiation and help fuel our growth.”

  • Duncan is an award-winning editor with more than 20 years experience in journalism. Having launched his tech journalism career as editor of Arabian Computer News in Dubai, he has since edited an array of tech and digital marketing publications, including Computer Business Review, TechWeekEurope, Figaro Digital, Digit and Marketing Gazette.

Tags: managed services, VMware

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Next-gen chips, Amazon Q, and speedy S3

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AWS re:Invent, which has been taking place from November 27 and runs to December 1, has had its usual plethora of announcements: a total of 21 at time of print.

Perhaps not surprisingly, given the huge potential impact of generative AI – ChatGPT officially turns one year old today – a lot of focus has been on the AI side for AWS’ announcements, including a major partnership inked with NVIDIA across infrastructure, software, and services.

Yet there has been plenty more announced at the Las Vegas jamboree besides. Here, CloudTech rounds up the best of the rest:

Next-generation chips

This was the other major AI-focused announcement at re:Invent: the launch of two new chips, AWS Graviton4 and AWS Trainium2, for training and running AI and machine learning (ML) models, among other customer workloads. Graviton4 shapes up against its predecessor with 30% better compute performance, 50% more cores and 75% more memory bandwidth, while Trainium2 delivers up to four times faster training than before and will be able to be deployed in EC2 UltraClusters of up to 100,000 chips.

The EC2 UltraClusters are designed to ‘deliver the highest performance, most energy efficient AI model training infrastructure in the cloud’, as AWS puts it. With it, customers will be able to train large language models in ‘a fraction of the time’, as well as double energy efficiency.

As ever, AWS offers customers who are already utilising these tools. Databricks, Epic and SAP are among the companies cited as using the new AWS-designed chips.

Zero-ETL integrations

AWS announced new Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL, Amazon DynamoDB, and Amazon Relational Database Services (Amazon RDS) for MySQL integrations with Amazon Redshift, AWS’ cloud data warehouse. The zero-ETL integrations – eliminating the need to build ETL (extract, transform, load) data pipelines – make it easier to connect and analyse transactional data across various relational and non-relational databases in Amazon Redshift.

A simple example of how zero-ETL functions can be seen is in a hypothetical company which stores transactional data – time of transaction, items bought, where the transaction occurred – in a relational database, but use another analytics tool to analyse data in a non-relational database. To connect it all up, companies would previously have to construct ETL data pipelines which are a time and money sink.

The latest integrations “build on AWS’s zero-ETL foundation… so customers can quickly and easily connect all of their data, no matter where it lives,” the company said.

Amazon S3 Express One Zone

AWS announced the general availability of Amazon S3 Express One Zone, a new storage class purpose-built for customers’ most frequently-accessed data. Data access speed is up to 10 times faster and request costs up to 50% lower than standard S3. Companies can also opt to collocate their Amazon S3 Express One Zone data in the same availability zone as their compute resources.  

Companies and partners who are using Amazon S3 Express One Zone include ChaosSearch, Cloudera, and Pinterest.

Amazon Q

A new product, and an interesting pivot, again with generative AI at its core. Amazon Q was announced as a ‘new type of generative AI-powered assistant’ which can be tailored to a customer’s business. “Customers can get fast, relevant answers to pressing questions, generate content, and take actions – all informed by a customer’s information repositories, code, and enterprise systems,” AWS added. The service also can assist companies building on AWS, as well as companies using AWS applications for business intelligence, contact centres, and supply chain management.

Customers cited as early adopters include Accenture, BMW and Wunderkind.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

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HCLTech and Cisco create collaborative hybrid workplaces

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Digital comms specialist Cisco and global tech firm HCLTech have teamed up to launch Meeting-Rooms-as-a-Service (MRaaS).

Available on a subscription model, this solution modernises legacy meeting rooms and enables users to join meetings from any meeting solution provider using Webex devices.

The MRaaS solution helps enterprises simplify the design, implementation and maintenance of integrated meeting rooms, enabling seamless collaboration for their globally distributed hybrid workforces.

Rakshit Ghura, senior VP and Global head of digital workplace services, HCLTech, said: “MRaaS combines our consulting and managed services expertise with Cisco’s proficiency in Webex devices to change the way employees conceptualise, organise and interact in a collaborative environment for a modern hybrid work model.

“The common vision of our partnership is to elevate the collaboration experience at work and drive productivity through modern meeting rooms.”

Alexandra Zagury, VP of partner managed and as-a-Service Sales at Cisco, said: “Our partnership with HCLTech helps our clients transform their offices through cost-effective managed services that support the ongoing evolution of workspaces.

“As we reimagine the modern office, we are making it easier to support collaboration and productivity among workers, whether they are in the office or elsewhere.”

Cisco’s Webex collaboration devices harness the power of artificial intelligence to offer intuitive, seamless collaboration experiences, enabling meeting rooms with smart features such as meeting zones, intelligent people framing, optimised attendee audio and background noise removal, among others.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

Tags: Cisco, collaboration, HCLTech, Hybrid, meetings

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Canonical releases low-touch private cloud MicroCloud

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Canonical has announced the general availability of MicroCloud, a low-touch, open source cloud solution. MicroCloud is part of Canonical’s growing cloud infrastructure portfolio.

It is purpose-built for scalable clusters and edge deployments for all types of enterprises. It is designed with simplicity, security and automation in mind, minimising the time and effort to both deploy and maintain it. Conveniently, enterprise support for MicroCloud is offered as part of Canonical’s Ubuntu Pro subscription, with several support tiers available, and priced per node.

MicroClouds are optimised for repeatable and reliable remote deployments. A single command initiates the orchestration and clustering of various components with minimal involvement by the user, resulting in a fully functional cloud within minutes. This simplified deployment process significantly reduces the barrier to entry, putting a production-grade cloud at everyone’s fingertips.

Juan Manuel Ventura, head of architectures & technologies at Spindox, said: “Cloud computing is not only about technology, it’s the beating heart of any modern industrial transformation, driving agility and innovation. Our mission is to provide our customers with the most effective ways to innovate and bring value; having a complexity-free cloud infrastructure is one important piece of that puzzle. With MicroCloud, the focus shifts away from struggling with cloud operations to solving real business challenges” says

In addition to seamless deployment, MicroCloud prioritises security and ease of maintenance. All MicroCloud components are built with strict confinement for increased security, with over-the-air transactional updates that preserve data and roll back on errors automatically. Upgrades to newer versions are handled automatically and without downtime, with the mechanisms to hold or schedule them as needed.

With this approach, MicroCloud caters to both on-premise clouds but also edge deployments at remote locations, allowing organisations to use the same infrastructure primitives and services wherever they are needed. It is suitable for business-in-branch office locations or industrial use inside a factory, as well as distributed locations where the focus is on replicability and unattended operations.

Cedric Gegout, VP of product at Canonical, said: “As data becomes more distributed, the infrastructure has to follow. Cloud computing is now distributed, spanning across data centres, far and near edge computing appliances. MicroCloud is our answer to that.

“By packaging known infrastructure primitives in a portable and unattended way, we are delivering a simpler, more prescriptive cloud experience that makes zero-ops a reality for many Industries.“

MicroCloud’s lightweight architecture makes it usable on both commodity and high-end hardware, with several ways to further reduce its footprint depending on your workload needs. In addition to the standard Ubuntu Server or Desktop, MicroClouds can be run on Ubuntu Core – a lightweight OS optimised for the edge. With Ubuntu Core, MicroClouds are a perfect solution for far-edge locations with limited computing capabilities. Users can choose to run their workloads using Kubernetes or via system containers. System containers based on LXD behave similarly to traditional VMs but consume fewer resources while providing bare-metal performance.

Coupled with Canonical’s Ubuntu Pro + Support subscription, MicroCloud users can benefit from an enterprise-grade open source cloud solution that is fully supported and with better economics. An Ubuntu Pro subscription offers security maintenance for the broadest collection of open-source software available from a single vendor today. It covers over 30k packages with a consistent security maintenance commitment, and additional features such as kernel livepatch, systems management at scale, certified compliance and hardening profiles enabling easy adoption for enterprises. With per-node pricing and no hidden fees, customers can rest assured that their environment is secure and supported without the expensive price tag typically associated with cloud solutions.

Want to learn more about cybersecurity and the cloud from industry leaders? Check out Cyber Security & Cloud Expo taking place in Amsterdam, California, and London. Explore other upcoming enterprise technology events and webinars powered by TechForge here.

Tags: automation, Canonical, MicroCloud, private cloud

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