Cloud Computing: Windows Azure Tackles Credit Card Security

Grazed from eWeek.  Author: Pedro Hernandez.

In oddly fitting timing, Microsoft announced on Jan. 16 that its Windows Azure cloud platform has been validated to conform to Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS 2.0), credit card industry policies and requirements that govern how merchant IT systems handle sensitive payment information.

"The PCI DSS is the global standard that any organization of any size must adhere to in order to accept payment cards, and to store, process, and/or transmit cardholder data," wrote Windows Azure General Manager Steven Martin in a company blog post. He added that his company's cloud "delivers a compliant framework" that enables customers to run their "own secure and compliant applications."...

Hitachi Content Platform-as-a-Service Now Available On Verizon Cloud

Grazed from Biztech2. Author: Editorial Staff.

Hitachi Data Systems Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., and Verizon Enterprise Solutions today announced an agreement to develop a software-defined storage solution based on Hitachi Content Platform (HCP) and Hitachi Content Platform Anywhere (HCP Anywhere) for the new Verizon Cloud.

Verizon is focused on developing an ecosystem of enterprise technologies built to run on Verizon Cloud, the company's new infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and object-based storage offering. HCP and HCP Anywhere are the latest enterprise-class technologies to be added to the Verizon Cloud, offering tools that enterprises can use to move their businesses forward as cloud-based services...

Is PaaS Dying?

Grazed from CloudComputingExpo. Author: Paul Miller.

The 'platform' tier in the middle of cloud computing's architecture is being squeezed, folded and reshaped beyond recognition. Even with continued investment, can it survive the transformative pressures forcing down upon it from the software/application layer above, or the apparently inexorable upward movement from the infrastructure layer upon which it rests?

To look at recent investments and enthusiastic headlines, it would be easy to assume that Platform as a Service (or PaaS) is on the up. RedHat recently trumpeted the launch of OpenShift Enterprise - a 'private PaaS,' whatever that might be. Eagerly tracked super-startup Pivotal pushed PivotalOne out to the world, strengthening the position of the Cloud Foundry PaaS offering upon which it sits. Apprenda, a PaaS that almost predates wider recognition of the term, secured an additional $16 million to continue expanding. And, more tightly integrated into Salesforce's latest vision for world domination, Heroku continues to attract enthusiasts...

SaaS, PaaS and IaaS: which cloud service model is for you?

Grazed from TechRadar. Author: Désiré Athow.

The cloud has had a transformational impact on businesses of all sizes - from small and midsized businesses (SMBs) to large enterprises - and it's showing no signs of slowing down. According to analyst house Gartner, the use of cloud computing is still growing and will become the bulk of new IT spend by 2016, a year that the company predicts will see hybrid cloud overtake private cloud, with nearly half of large enterprises having deployments by the end of 2017.

Despite its high uptake, the most suitable route into the cloud is not always so clear cut for many organisations moving on from the tried and tested client-server model. To shed light on the advantages and disadvantages of cloud computing's three main service delivery models - software-as-a-service (SaaS), platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) - we spoke to Mike Kavis, VP and Principal Architect for Cloud Technology Partners and author of 'Architecting the cloud'...

Another cloud computing myth busted: PaaS isn't just for the little guy

Grazed from TheServerSide.  Author:  Sacha Labourey.

There's no doubt that individuals, startups, and smaller businesses have been the first movers in Platform as a Service (PaaS), and that's natural. It's natural because PaaS, particularly fully managed services offerings, gives organizations a chance to focus on creating and delivering applications while leaving behind the burden associated with infrastructure and operations. Mixed in with these early adopters have been some larger companies executing on a top-down directive to 'take advantage of the cloud.'

Lately though, the industry has seen a major shift toward more enterprise-level adoption as an overall trend. Why? One of the biggest reasons for strong growth on the enterprise side is that traditionally late adopter enterprises are being disrupted by the smaller early adopters. In some ways, this is the wave of Software as a Service (SaaS) and mobile offerings coming to market and impacting traditional players in many spaces. In other ways, it's the IT department finally responding to the developers standing outside of their offices carrying pitchforks and torches. Overall, two quite different use cases are leading this move towards PaaS....

The Rise and Rise of SaaS

Grazed from Business2Community. Author: Lucien Wynn.

Cloud computing is very much in vogue, as more and more businesses make use of cloud technologies. A major benefit of cloud computing is the cost savings it can deliver, along with the fact that cloud services can be easy to implement and are often scalable. An element of cloud computing which has gained traction in recent years is that of Software as a Service (SaaS). At its most basic level, SaaS is the provision of software hosted on the cloud, usually charged on a subscription basis (rather than as a one-off license fee). A major benefit of this for businesses is the fact that they only need to pay for what they use, so if their software requirements increase or indeed fall over time, they can adjust their subscription accordingly.

Although Software as a Service has existed in various forms for many years now (, often cited as one of the first SaaS providers, was founded in 1999), it has only really entered the mainstream in the last few years. And its rise looks set to continue, with Gartner predicting that the global SaaS market could be worth over $22 billion by 2015, almost double what it was in 2011 ($12.3 billion). Evidence of the widespread use of SaaS is provided by North Bridge Venture Partners? annual Future of Cloud Computing Survey which shows that 63% of the organisations surveyed use SaaS...

Jenkins Operations Center By CloudBees Manages ‘Jenkins Sprawl’ Across The Enterprise

Grazed from CloudBees.  Author: PR Announcement
CloudBees, Inc., the continuous delivery Platform as a Service (PaaS) leader, today announced the release of Jenkins Operations Center by CloudBees, a new product built for Jenkins that gives enterprise IT operations teams their first centrally managed solution to address the problem of “Jenkins sprawl,” as well as central visibility into Jenkins configurations throughout the enterprise.
As development teams add more instances of Jenkins, the popular open source continuous integration (CI) tool, they face challenges managing the siloed Jenkins configurations that proliferate. With Jenkins Operations Center by CloudBees, IT operations and development teams can now centrally manage all Jenkins resources, allowing them to reduce additional hardware purchases and assert more control over the development environment.

Apprenda Scores C Round - Is PaaS Finally Here?

Grazed from Forbes. Author: Ben Kepes.

Platform as a Service (PaaS) has long been heralded as the next big wave for cloud computing (disclosure, I’m an adviser to ActiveState, a PaaS vendor). Distinct from the more readily understood (and more broadly adopted) Infrastructure as a Service, PaaS provides higher value to organizations by abstracting more non-core technological requirements away from the business.

PaaS offerings further facilitate the deployment of applications when compared to IaaS since they not only take care of the infrastructure-level requirement but also offer further integrated services and the application development platform. It’s fair to say though that PaaS brings with it some broader concerns than the more simple IaaS – concerns have long been raised about the amount of lock-in that PaaS vendors create for their customers – one of the earlier PaaS offerings, is often complemented in one breath for the way it democratizes development, but criticized in the other breath for the lock-in that it creates...

PaaS has evolved quickly...and will continue to do so

Grazed from CloudTech. Author: Editorial Staff.

PaaS is a multi-faceted phenomenon that has been evolving very rapidly in the past five years, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Enterprises should get ready to anticipate and take advantage of new PaaS developments. To do so, they should ask vendors some hard questions about strategy plans and product roadmaps. For more information, see the Ovum report PaaS: Two More Years of Confusion Ahead.

PaaS has quickly evolved in the past few years

Today’s PaaS is quite different from that of yesterday, and this can cause confusion. Its rapid evolution has so far partly reflected the evolution of the overall cloud computing market. PaaS has, for example, evolved from a focus on public clouds to private and hybrid clouds, from green-field to legacy applications, and from being packaged with its own infrastructure services to supporting third-party (mostly IaaS) services...

PaaS Finally Hitting Its Stride

Grazed from IT Business Edge. Author: Arthor Cole.

Cloud architectures come in many forms, but in general they can be broken down into three distinct categories: infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS). The difference lies largely in the functionality you hope to derive from the cloud and the degree to which you are willing to move traditional data architectures to either internal or external clouds.

So far, SaaS has proven popular for those who hope to lessen their burden in supplying leading business applications like customer resource management (CRM) or business intelligence (BI), while IaaS has gravitated toward Big Data storage and backup/recovery applications. PaaS has gotten off to a slower start primarily because it centers largely on custom application development and is therefore the most difficult to design and provision...