Is the approach to the cloud similar to a new car purchase ? Dave Elliott, Symantec Product Marketing Manager argues that it is indeed similar, in his blog on SOAworld magazine.
The crux of the argument is that you really need to have thought about what you are getting from the cloud, what will work for your needs as well as what is expected of it and then making sure that you are indeed making sure that it delivers.
For instance, for some smaller businesses it makes sense to use the public cloud but for many others, private cloud is the only way to go. Some enterprises have confidential data which needs to be very secure, others have requirements that mean they need control over the data. One has to consider the privacy, security and control they needs before they decide on how to approach the cloud.
In regards to car safety requirements, enterprises have similar needs for their data. Most enterprises cannot afford to lose their data or have their site crash. SLA requirements (RPO, RTO) can be critical to their success. In such cases making sure that you have HA solutions as well as automated DR solutions becomes extremely important. In the case of the cloud you need end-to-end availability that keeps your services up and running. Storage Foundation 6.0 has a feature called 'Virtual Business Service' which allows customers to provide holistic availability to keep services up and running.
Finally, just like in a new car, enterprises would like to make sure it is something that is built on a good structure (chassis in the case of a car) because the long term success depends on it. This means having the automated processes and solutions that can deliver seamless operations. In the case of the cloud these would be the Storage As a Service as well as ability to provision availability in an automated manner. It only supports chargeback capabilities across heterogeneous hardware which enables a sustainable and successful cloud deployment.
Symantec's 6.0 launch of the Storage Foundation products will help customers build private clouds with the high availability and provisioning solutions help you architect your cloud. Please check out the white paper at http://go.symantec.com/cloudavailabiity
You can also read Dave Elliott's blog at http://soa.sys-con.com/node/1892348