Many IT organizations are showing interest in taking their clouds in-house and moving to a virtualized private cloud to reduce their costs and dependence on providers like Amazon AWS. Despite the many benefits of a private cloud infrastructure — such as increased security and compliance, or customizable hardware, network, and storage performance — venturing on a private cloud project brings with it the enormous complexity of the field at every level: business, architecture, infrastructure, virtualization, and workload management.
Such organizations will have to enter the challenging and sometimes lengthy process of moving toward the private cloud. Some basic first decisions include choosing a cloud provider, deciding whether to virtualize, and so on. But a private cloud implementation process raises many additional and complex questions.
Such questions might be: What are the goals of the implementation? Do the different teams agree on them? Which organizational changes are involved? Which parts of the system should remain manual and which should be automated? What are the existing SLAs and processes that need to be taken into account? See these five steps for building a private cloud environment on TechTarget.
As the cloud hype grows, more and more IT professionals handling migrations to a private cloud will need to provide solutions to these complex questions and develop new skill sets based on the organizational changes that may take place. And even after surviving a migration to the cloud, IT professionals need to gain expertise in order to support the new infrastructure – they will need to continue to learn about the private cloud space, understand the differences between types of technologies, and keep up with the changes in the field.
Becoming an expert in private cloud isn't easy, and while some cloud expert certifications do exist (such as Microsoft's Cloud Platform and Infrastructure program), private cloud training that isn't technology-specific is difficult to find. Most people still resort to the Internet to find solutions, techniques, and best practices, and making sense of the existing online information might be challenging.
A Centralized Solution
The team at Stratoscale took on a project to make the world of private and public cloud more accessible. They built the IaaS Wiki – a knowledge hub that collects all the relevant information on private and public cloud technologies from around the world and organizes it into a meaningful structure.
The wiki started with an intensive 6-month research project — the first stage was building a tree of over 200 sub-topics around private and public cloud technologies. The tree now covers cloud architecture; cloud platforms; containers in cloud infrastructure like Kubernetes and Docker; Cloud Management Platforms; virtualization strategies for private clouds; and modern data center architecture.
The Stratoscale team collected over 100,000 web pages that cover these subjects, hand-picked the most relevant ones for each category, and divided them into “content types” such as How To, Case Studies, Real Life Examples, Vendor Information, Product Comparisons, and so on.
The wiki is still in its infancy with around 60 content pages, and new category pages are added on a weekly basis.
A central realization behind the wiki is that Stratoscale, although it employs some of the world’s top cloud computing experts, realized that they aren’t the only ones writing about the space, and in many parts of this field there are others who are more specialized. They decided to bring all these community voices to the front stage and let visitors learn from a large variety of sources – even those of their direct competitors. This new community resource can save a lot of time and help many professionals in the IT industry become much more familiar with modern cloud infrastructure.