Systems management from the cloud
Many thanks Erick Schonfeld and the team at TechCrunch for the great writeup on what we’re up to:
I think the article hits on the core difference in what we’re trying to accomplish – “Replace million-dollar deployments that take months with a five minute download that can have a machine being managed from the cloud in five minutes.”
We hope to deliver on this vision. If you’re interested in trying out the product (of course, an early version) just sign up on our website for updates and we’ll send over a login when we’re ready to open things up for early access.
Enterprise IT infrastructure management is due for a change. Around the world, social computing and elegantly simple software have combined to revolutionize consumer products. Yet enterprise IT still relies on plodding, hugely over-priced solutions. It’s no wonder most sysadmins rely on their own tools or manual processes to manage their systems – whether those are physical machines, machines sitting in their private clouds on VMware, or even machines sitting in public cloud systems like Amazon EC2 or Rackspace.
Technology analysts peg worldwide annual sales of systems management and datacenter automation software at over $14 billion. Most of the sector remains largely dependent on traditional enterprise IT solutions – solutions that require systems administrators and their host enterprises to deploy large, complicated software stacks. Then it’s time for everyone to learn new languages and configuration processes just to get older, previously working applications redeployed after this “transformation”.
There is almost every form of product available in this market. The high-end has a handful of players; analysts have even taken to calling them the “Big 4” – Computer Associates, BMC, IBM, and HP. Open-source providers such as Puppet Labs and Opscode sit at the other end of the spectrum and are trying to own the open-source charge. And in the middle, there is the Microsoft Systems Management Server and InTune, focused on Windows as a specific platform to be managed.
Every one of these products is still a big software package that is complicated to deploy. Between software deployment consultants, training, new infrastructure (databases, etc.), new languages and new processes, deploying this software to manage even a small number of servers is a huge and complicated task. Here are some other specific things that you’re probably aware of when you’re dealing with these solutions:
We could go on and on about the problems with existing solutions, but we often find that customers have their own long list of gripes. We feel that the old model is broken, and that there has to be a better way to help people manage their systems.
At ScaleXtreme, we’re working on something better. Since we’re not announcing our specific product just yet, we’d like to share some core principles that are guiding our product design:
Thank you for all the positive feedback and support so far. If you are interested in being part of our early-access program, please sign up on our website and we’ll try our best to accommodate you. We look forward to delivering a great product to market that will make a difference in the scalable management of systems out there, wherever they may be.