Creating Service Blueprints for Hybrid Cloud
In my last post, I talked about the four ways you can extend the EMC Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (EHC) Solution. The first is by publishing additional service blueprints to add new capabilities. Many of our customers are adding value to their EHC solution by adopting and publishing new service blueprints such as Platform as a Service (PaaS), Middleware as a Service, or Database as a Service (DBaaS), to transform the way they deliver existing app services.
What Exactly is a Service Blueprint?
Service blueprints are the automation and orchestration components required to deliver an IT service. They are published in the service catalog and provisioned to a customer via the portal. The initial services provided with EHC are focused on automatically provisioning a virtual machine, with the storage, networking, and operating system required for it to run. EMC EHC makes it easy to build on top of those initial blueprints, to create aggregated or additional services composed of multiple virtual machines, with a variety of software components, to deliver a compelling service to the business.
Let’s look at an example. Say you have developed a Java application and you are delivering it as Software as a Service (SaaS) or Platform as a Service (PaaS). This might comprise a front end, some middleware, and a database back end, along with a variety of software utilities and virtual machines to deliver it to a developer as one consumable service. Without this capability, the developer must understand how many virtual machines they need, what software goes on each, and how to configure/integrate those from a network, storage, or backup perspective, and then after ordering the components they must complete the configuration and hope it follows the corporate standards.
The value of the EHC solution is increased when you begin to add more complex services for consumption that allow you to build more types of new apps on top of the environment, but you can also migrate legacy apps into the environment and have them land on a standardized blueprint reducing the number of one off technology stacks in the enterprise. For example, if you have a bunch of existing house-built Java apps, with automated and orchestrated service blueprints that deliver a Java environment, you can move these onto the new EHC environment. Now you’ve increased availability, saved costs, and improved operations because now you’re managing one blueprint for say 200 Java apps, as opposed to 20 different implementations of a Java stack in your existing environment.
Another example is what we’ve done within EMC IT to provide SharePoint as a Service. EMC IT was getting a lot of requests for the deployment of SharePoint servers as a means to foster collaboration among various business user groups. In the past, they had been standing up physical environments with varying amounts of storage, RAM, etc. This was an expensive proposition to manage as it was time consuming, the process was complex, and it took several weeks. Business users just didn’t want to wait that long.
So, instead EMC IT defined a new service to make SharePoint available as Software as a Service. That enabled them to reduce costs associated with implementing a new SharePoint environment, reduce the time it took for a customer to get a SharePoint environment, and made the overall operations of that environment that much more simple because they were able to just replicate that blueprint and provision against it as opposed to having to go through design and implementation every time they needed to do it. Business users now get their collaboration sites in less than a day.
So what are some of the other blueprints that have been created for EHC? We have blueprints for things such as virtualized Oracle, Microsoft SQL server, SharePoint as a Service, parts of the SAP stack, etc We essentially have a library of blueprints that we have built for customers that we can take and customize for a new customer to help them realize value much faster. Our Global Services organization has created a service offering specifically designed to help organizations extend the value of their EHC solution by publishing these additional capabilities and service blueprints.
In my next post, I will be talking about how to integrate additional technologies to derive even greater value from the EHC solution.