Engineer reveals HP public cloud on LinkedIn

By Liam Tung on May 5, 2011 2:55 PM
Filed under Cloud

Streamlined resource provisioning impresses.

A senior HP engineer has revealed on LinkedIn titillating details about HP’s public cloud service that aimed to rival Amazon.

Scott McClellan, HP’s chief technologist and interim vice president of engineering for its cloud business removed the details but only after The Register published a snapshot.

McClellan had “built from scratch” HP's distributed “object storage” service, according to his profile on the business networkig site.

The description appeared to be similar to Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (S3).   

He referred to HP’s “compute”, “networking” and a “block storage” service, similar to Amazon’s elastic block storage at the centre of it web service's recent outage.

The details flesh out the vague sketch that HP chief executive officer Leo Apotheker offered analysts in March, according to ZDNet

McClellan referred to a cutting-edge provisioning automation feature that impressed at least one analyst. 

HP was taking a “declarative/model-based approach where users provide a specification and the system automates deployment and management,” according to McClellan.

Declarative provisioning appeared to be similar to Amazon’s recently announced AWS CloudFormation, according to GigaOm analyst, Derrick Harris

The feature was promoted as manner of streamlining the process of setting up load balancing, instances, storage volumes and database domains when launching or taking down applications.

CloudFormation centers around two main abstractions: theTemplate in which the customer describes, in a simple text based format (JSON), what resources need to be created, what their dependencies are, what configuration parameters are needed,” Amazon’s chief technology officer Werner Vogels explained

Other features in HP’s pipeline, according to McClellan, were a Future HP cloud website including public content and authenticated user content, graphical user interface and command-line interface (Linux/Unix and Windows).

Application programming interfaces to enable outsiders to hook their software into HP's technology  were Java, Ruby and open-source languages. 

The absence of Microsoft's Azure, .NET, and the C# programming languages caused a small stir since HP, along with Dell and Fujitsu, was one of Microsoft's Azure platform appliance partners.

HP will announce its cloud plans in August at VMware love-in VMworld, the Register wrote.  

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