Today IBM announced that six universities are using its cloud computing expertise to set up and manage clouds located in Qatar, Africa and in Japan. It is using Hadoop for allocating resources in the cloud — something it first began doing in 2007 when it teamed up with Google for its first cloud project. Since that time, IBM has combined Hadoop and its Tivoli systems management software in many of its efforts. Now it’s going further.
Dennis Quan, director of autonomic computing with IBM, said that future efforts will likely involve Tivoli’s Workload Scheduler — possibly to manage actual compute jobs running in a cloud. Quan didn’t get into too many specifics, and an IBM spokeswoman noted that the company plans to make an announcement in February about Tivoli and cloud computing. Such a move would extend IBM’s efforts beyond simply making it easy to create a cloud to allowing IT managers to control jobs running in them.
If IBM thinks IT managers that buy its software are looking for help controlling their work flow in the cloud, maybe enterprises are willing to embrace the idea of using clouds inside the corporate firewalls or for mission-critical jobs. Enterprises may be ready to use the cloud as more than generic compute cycles of last resort when they unexpectedly require excess processing power.