Skytap Delivers API to Enable ‘Hybrid’ Cloud Computing

Tina Aarsvold

SEATTLE, WA – September 10, 2008 – Skytap, Inc., the leading provider of cloud-based infrastructure solutions, today announced the availability of an API that enables customers to blend Skytap’s cloud-based Virtual Lab platform with their existing onsite IT infrastructure. Rather than using cloud resources in a silo, Skytap’s Web services API and one-click VPN functionality allows organizations to create a “hybrid” IT model whereby cloud resources can be used as an extension of existing onsite IT environments.

“A common misconception people have about cloud computing is that it has to be an all or nothing decision,” said Theresa Lanowitz, founder of analyst firm voke. “Skytap’s API and advanced networking features allow companies to progressively adopt cloud resources without completely abandoning the business processes and applications they’ve already established in their onsite environment.”

‘Hybrid’ Cloud Computing Model – The Best of Both Worlds

Unlike most cloud computing offerings where applications must be specifically rewritten for the cloud, Skytap allows companies to run their existing applications, virtual machines and systems unchanged on industry-standard platforms. Skytap cloud infrastructure supports the leading hypervisors, including VMware, Citrix Xen and planned support for Microsoft Hyper-V, and operating systems, such as Microsoft Windows, Linux and Solaris.

“We’re excited to release our API and advanced networking capabilities because it opens up a world of possibilities for our current and future customers,” said Scott Roza, chief executive officer of Skytap. “We believe the model of ‘hybrid’ cloud computing will be broadly adopted and has tremendous potential to improve IT’s responsiveness to the business while increasing efficiencies and lowering cost.”

Using a ‘hybrid’ cloud computing model, organizations now have a way to realize the benefits of ‘cloud economics.’ Migrating high cost, dynamic environments, such as application development and QA, IT ops testing, training and demo environments, provides a low-risk adoption path to cloud computing. It also delivers the highest ROI as dynamic environments fluctuate dramatically and are often the most expensive to administer. In a hybrid model, companies can maintain production applications onsite while conducting all their testing in the cloud. This enables on-demand scaling of test environments as needed and eliminates the cost of underutilized hardware. This approach also allows organizations to benefit from the management and automation capabilities of a fully automated virtual lab solution, leading to huge productivity increases.

The API and advanced networking features that are now in Skytap Virtual Lab include:

  • A REST-based Web Service interface that enables cloud resources to be controlled programmatically
  • Public/Static IP addresses to provide seamless access to Skytap environments
  • One-click VPN for easy connection back to the onsite IT environments
  • Automated upload of existing virtual machines and software to run in Skytap Virtual Lab

A Virtual Lab in the Cloud

Skytap Virtual Lab provides virtualized infrastructure, including hardware, storage and networking resources that can be accessed on demand. When combined with Skytap’s virtual lab management application and the Skytap Library, a pre-populated virtual machine library which includes major operating systems, databases and other application software, customers get access to a complete virtual lab solution on demand.

“As a provider of the industry’s leading cloud application platform, our consulting organization works with enterprises to deliver applications on large-scale private clouds,” said Mark Sundt, vice president of professional services, Appistry. “The Skytap environment allows us to help our customers get cloud applications to market more quickly by adopting a ‘hybrid’ model for development and large scale testing. The ability to automatically scale up lab infrastructure using the Skytap API complements our clients’ on-site infrastructure and gives us tremendous business flexibility.”

The new API and advanced networking features that enable customers to utilize a ‘hybrid model’ of cloud and onsite infrastructure are available immediately in Skytap Virtual Lab’s September release. For more information on this release of Skytap Virtual Lab, please visit www.skytap.com.