Skytap automates cloud deployments

Skytap, a provider of cloud automation software, this week unveiled orchestration and configuration products designed to enable enterprises to easily create virtual environments in the cloud.

This release of new Skytap software features -- Configuration Routing and Self-Service Cloud Orchestration -- allows development and test teams to replicate their in-house environments in the cloud while sharing server resources, such as a Microsoft Team Foundation Server, HP Application Life-cycle Management server or MySQL database, the company says. Users can coordinate the startup, shutdown and suspend sequence of virtual data centers that include shared server resources without requiring IT support, Skytap says.

BACKGROUND: Startup pushes virtual labs as a service

As a result, enterprises can reduce the time it takes to move workloads to the cloud, the company says.

Data centers often require the use of centralized servers that share information across many applications, Skytap says. Trying to replicate this model in the cloud can create redundant servers and higher usage costs, and users are then faced with coordinating the startup and shutdown sequence of virtual data centers with scores, or even hundreds, or virtual machines processing complicated applications.

Skytap attempts to automate this process on behalf of development and test managers.

Configuration Routing is designed to allow users to re-create a traditional "server hub/spoke" model in the cloud. It allows users to connect any number of server configurations to a centralized server configuration and set up custom DNS services.

For example, a centralized server "hub" such as Microsoft Team Foundation might be configured to connect to multiple development and test environments, while also configuring network routes -- the "spokes" -- between them.

Configuration Routing allows development managers to automate this process through a "self-service" user interface that Skytap says allows them to more easily move in-house environments to the cloud, avoid server set-up errors, accelerate release cycles and reduce costs.

The Skytap Self-Service Cloud Orchestration feature is intended to eliminate the need for complicated scripts and data center automation software. For example, if a configuration requires an Active Directory server to power up first, followed by the Team Foundation server, the database server, the load balancer and the web servers, Cloud Orchestration can simplify this task by enabling users to specify the sequence and scheduling dependencies through the Skytap user interface.

Once specified, these rules are automatically enforced during the startup, suspend and shutdown processes, Skytap says.

Configuration Routing and Self-Service Cloud Orchestration are offered to existing customers free of charge. Pricing for the Skytap software starts at $250 per month, which includes support for five users, five Skytap virtual machines -- a Skytap virtual machine equals 1/CPU/1 GB RAM computing -- 500 Skytap virtual machine hours and 200GB of storage.

Skytap has more than 160 global enterprise and ISV customers, and its software specializes in the construction of public and hybrid clouds. Skytap software is meant to bridge isolated VLANs established within clouds, which can introduce challenges in establishing centralized resources, routing between environments and resource sharing.

Then company supports VMware and Citrix hypervisors, and partnerships with server vendors Dell, HP and IBM. Skytap also competes with VMware and other companies that develop and market virtual data center and cloud management products.

Read more about data center in Network World's Data Center section.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Configuration / maintenancevirtualizationMicrosofthardware systemsmysqlData Centercloud computinginternet

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jim Duffy

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Best Deals on Good Gear Guide

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?