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With promises of greater efficiency and cost savings, companies are investing more in cloud technologies. When moving to the cloud companies need to look at the three key layers associated with cloud computing: infrastructure, platform and applications/software layer.
As you move up the cloud stack, each layer provides a greater level of abstraction than the prior one. The foundation of the cloud stack is the Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) layer. IaaS automates the management and provisioning of virtual machines, network, and storage. However, for companies looking to put their applications on the cloud, the IaaS layer is an empty shell that does not include the necessary components (such as middleware and data services) the application needs in order to run.
Stackato is an application platform, commonly called a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), that sits on top of the IaaS. This makes your cloud usable and empowers your developers because now your developers have the ability to automatically provision their application environment themselves instead of waiting for IT. The self-service nature of a PaaS makes the development, deployment and management of applications easier and more efficient so your company can fully realize the benefits of the cloud.
The last layer at the top of the stack is the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) layer is at the top of the cloud computing stack and is built on top of the IaaS and PaaS foundations. Email systems, communication and games are just some of the examples of applications built at this layer. At this point in the stack, end users access the applications through a mobile device, web browser, or native client.
IaaS and PaaS - Increasing the Level of Abstraction
Both IaaS and PaaS work together to assist IT staff and developers in their roles by automating the provisioning associated with the application development process and making it easier for organizations to move their applications to the cloud.
The IaaS automates the provisioning of virtual machines and is commonly used as the foundation of the cloud computing stack. Stackato then provides an additional level of abstraction by automating the provisioning of the application environment.
For organizations who are utilizing an IaaS (whether public or private), Stackato can then be deployed on your cloud infrastructure. The diagram to the right shows how Stackato fits within your cloud environment. Within Stackato, computing resources are shared efficiently and securely by giving each application its own Linux Container (using LXC) which can be extensively customized to suit the application it is hosting. Stackato works directly with the infrastructure layer by communicating with the IaaS API and this enables the auto-scaling necessary to expand the use of Stackato in vSphere, EC2, CloudStack and OpenStack cloud environments.
In addition, the infrastructure-agnostic nature of Stackato lets you avoid vendor lock-in—you can work with any infrastructure or cloud provider, including VMware's vSphere, OpenStack, CloudStack, XenServer, KVM, HP Cloud Services, and Amazon Web Services. Stackato allows quick and seamless deployment to any public, private, or hybrid cloud, even as those destinations change, giving you the freedom to switch providers or cloud infrastructure without incurring any additional costs to migrate your applications.