Server Vendors Push Cloud Computing

WSJ has an article about the server vendors push towards Cloud Computing.  All the big boys, HP, Dell, IBM, and Sun have started data center practices.

Firms Push 'Cloud Computing'


Last month, Microsoft Corp. became the latest entrant to cloud computing -- in which consumer and corporate IT services are provided over the Internet, rather than loaded onto individual PCs or corporate computers. Microsoft said it will use specially designed, high-density Dell servers to power the data centers behind its new Azure service, which will run online applications on behalf of start-ups and large companies.

Cloud computing is also fueling an investment boom by Internet players like Google Inc., Yahoo Inc. and Inc., which are building massive data centers to deliver consumer Web services and flexible access to powerful computer and storage resources for corporations.

One of the points made.

Forrester Research analyst James Staten said the emphasis on data center systems will require computer makers to rethink their approach because they currently are structured to sell relatively small enterprise systems to a large number of corporate customers. The advent of massive data centers will force them to now focus on winning a fewer number of huge contracts.

"If Microsoft is going to build another 1 million square foot data center and you lose that contract, that's a big loss," said Mr. Staten. "The stakes are a lot higher."

Cloud Computing has the potential to consolidate data centers into more efficient utility service based model.  As Amazon Web Services team has discovered, there is a hybrid approach as well, where companies use the cloud computing for some areas, and keep their own data center for baseline services.