Summary:

Few companies are more closely watched in their move to cloud than hardware giants Dell and HP, so come hear what their cloud gurus have to say.

Every IT giant is pushing its way into cloud computing with varying degrees of success. No companies making that transition are more closely watched than dueling hardware powers Dell and Hewlett-Packard.

Nnamdi Orakwue, VP of Dell Cloud

Nnamdi Orakwue, VP of Dell Cloud

The hunger for cloud capacity continues unabated.  Netcraft numbers show that the number of web-facing servers at Amazon Web Services grew 33 percent to 158,000 from September 2012 and May 2013. And, Gartner expects the market for public cloud services to hit $130 billion this year, up 18.5 percent  from $111 billion in 2012.  No wonder all the IT vendors are trying to get in on the act, fine-tuning their plans as they go.

Dell’s cloud strategy, for example, has shifted. In May,  it pulled back on plans to offer its own OpenStack-based public cloud in favor of selling options from Joyent, ScaleMatrix and ZeroLag; its private cloud focus remains OpenStack-oriented. How will that divergent plan play out? Nnamdi Orakwue, the exec charged with running all cloud-related services across Dell will be on hand at our Structure:Europe  event to share more details.

HP Cloud Evangelist Margaret Dawson.

HP Cloud Evangelist Margaret Dawson.

Also speaking at the show: HP’s new cloud guru, Margaret Dawson, who joined the company early this year from Symform. HP is firmly in the OpenStack camp, last month rolling out more public cloud options,  including virtual private networking. Dawson has been talking up a storm about how HP can take on Amazon Web Services by stressing the company’s enterprise credibility and existing relationships with big customers worldwide.

Both Orakwue and Dawson have some heavy lifting to do given the travails of their companies. Dell is in the process of going private in a deal led by founder Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners. And HP, as has been duly reported, is trying to recover from a series of mis-steps, including the expensive Autonomy buy two years ago. Both have seen their server businesses pressured by macro forces, not the least of which is the growing trend among cloud providers to buy low-end no-name servers rather than name-brand boxes.

Both companies are playing David to Amazon’s Goliath in public cloud and hope to parlay their business expertise and ability to offer private cloud options as aces in the hole. While Amazon adds more enterprise-oriented services, these contenders are banking that their support options and service level agreements will make them a more comfortable choice for corporate IT buyers. But they also have to compete with enterprise-class clouds from Red Hat, IBM and other players.

The cloudscape is getting more interesting by the minute. So make sure you check out Structure:Europe, registration details here.

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