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IBM Introduces Cloud-of-Clouds Invention

Just when IT experts thought they had the concept of cloud computing all figured out, the development team at IBM throws the industry another curveball. Dubbed the "cloud-of-clouds," IBM has recently announced a patent-pending invention -- in the form of a software development kit -- that allows for the usage of third-party, private and public clouds in order to accommodate growing needs for data migration, backup and sharing.

Inside the Toolkit

The new software development toolkit, which was originally introduced at IBM Edge 2013, relies on an "object storage" approach to cloud services, thereby allowing users the luxury of drag-and-drop capability when it comes to backing up and sharing files across cloud servers. Meanwhile, IBM's ICStore utility maintains storage space utilization, file synchronization and redundancy, ultimately protecting user data against data loss and hardware failure. In the event a cloud framework malfunctions, data stored on the backup framework is immediately made available to the user. Moreover, it accomplishes this without any input from the user.

IBM Fellow, Evangelos Eleftheriou, spoke highly of the new toolkit in a recent press release. "Our cloud-of-clouds invention can help clients avoid service outages and security incidents that impact the reliability and security of individual clouds," he said. "We are adding multiple levels of redundancy and reliability by making cloud migration and backup easier and faster than is currently possible."

SoftLayer Partnership

In a recent acquisition, IBM took control of the 21,000 SoftLayer clients located around the world. This proved to be a crucial move, as SoftLayer now provides the object-based interface featured in the cloud-of-clouds. SoftLayer, which was originally founded in 2005, specializes in web servers, hosting and cloud services.

Erich Clementi, senior vice president of IBM's Global Technology Services division, stated his original goals regarding the new partnership with SoftLayer. “As businesses add public cloud capabilities to their on-premise IT systems, they need enterprise-grade reliability, security and management. To address this opportunity, IBM has built a portfolio of high-value private, public and hybrid cloud offerings, as well as software-as-a-service business solutions. With SoftLayer, IBM will accelerate the build-out of our public cloud infrastructure to give clients the broadest choice of cloud offerings to drive business innovation.”

Lance Crosby, CEO of SoftLayer, has also expressed his enthusiasm over the merger. In direct alignment with the latest events regarding SoftLayer and the cloud-of-clouds, Crosby predicted such expansion in an interview back in June 2013. He was quoted as saying: “SoftLayer has a strong track record with born-on-the-cloud companies, and our move today with IBM will rapidly expand that footprint globally as well as allow us to go deep into the large enterprise market.”

Given the track record of both IBM and SoftLayer, one can only expect continual expansion as the idea of their cloud-of-clouds begins to mature. Given the fact that the invention directly addresses issues revolving around data integrity, cloud availability and overall security, it's easy to see how the cloud-of-clouds has the potential to impact the future standards and trends of cloud computing in a huge way.

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