New thinking, powerful alliance

Citrix seek new cloud blueprint with investment into Java PaaS Cumulogic

Little more than a month on from unleashing their platform-as-a-service, Cumulogic have been given a seal of approval from virtualisation experts Citrix Systems.

The undisclosed investment from Citrix’s Startup Accelerator, which injects capital into flourishing enterprises, suggests that the cloud computing giant behind CloudStack is interested in targeting new markets away from their specialist area of virtualisation.

Founded by veterans of Sun Microsystems last year, Cumulogic have since positioned themselves as a comprehensive cloud platform, streamlining the process of deploying and managing Java mobile, web and enterprise applications on public, private or hybrid clouds.

The management side is key here for enterprises wading into the field, as Cumulogic offer autoscaling, monitoring and metering as standard features, making it far less bewildering to those hesitant of pushing their applications out into the unknown, knowing they have that level of visibility.

Even with .NET and Windows apps support promised imminently, the Java heritage is still the lifeblood of the company, with ‘Father of Java’ James Gosling acting as an advisor. Cumulogic isn’t a closed wall proposition either, allowing the developer to choose the development environment that suits them, including Netbeans and Eclipse.

Similarly, Cumulogic has spent the last year adding support for the most popular infrastructures, such as the private clouds of CloudStack, OpenStack and VMware’s vSphere as well as Amazon EC2 and HP Cloud Services for public clouds. - well aware that vendor lock-in is a big turnoff these days.

In a statement, Citrix explained they were keen on the startup’s “ability to bridge between traditional datacenters and clouds at the application level”. This has recently become a big talking point with PaaS especially with enterprises finally registering interest.

Michael Harries, Citrix Chief Technologist, recognises that this area is still in transition and the boundaries are becoming blurred, adding:

Cloud has entered the zeitgeist as a shorthand for internet, scalability and the rapid shift to using remote computers of all flavors. From a technologist perspective, we’ve fixed on SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS to differentiate between flavors of cloud computing, even with broad agreement that the game is not fully played and we’ll see much more evolution in this space.”

Founder and CTO of Cumulogic Rajesh Ramchandani said the investment would help validate their “vision of the evolution of the datacenter to the cloud computing model”.

With the three standard layers of cloud computing merging, the market is changing dramatically. Likewise, PaaS is still a developing field as new companies seem to arrive monthly. The ultimate goal for them is to tie down partnerships with infrastructure players to make sure they get maximum exposure with larger customer bases.

From Citrix’s perspective, this move solidifies their intention to create a new blueprint for cloud infrastructures, embracing newer technologies that are making headway. Whilst they’re not necessarily outright buying Cumulogic, this powerful alliance could have huge ramifications down the road as both continue to blossom.

Chris Mayer

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