Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) logo

The Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) has announced and published more documents for data center customers of cloud usage. These new cloud usage models for to address customer demands for interoperability of various clouds and services before for Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) among other topics which are now joined by the new Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and foundational document for cloud interoperability.

Unlike most industry trade groups or alliances that are vendor driven or centric, ODCA is consortium of global IT leaders (e.g. customers) that is vendor independent and comprises as 12 member steering committee from member companies (e.g. customers), learn more about ODCA here.

Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) logo image

Disclosure note, StorageIO is an ODCA member, visit here to become an ODCA member.

From the ODCA announcement of the new documents:

The documents detail expectations for market delivery to the organizations mission of open, industry standard cloud solution adoption, and discussions have already begun with providers to help accelerate delivery of solutions based on these new requirements. This suite of requirements was joined by a Best Practices document from National Australia Bank (NAB) outlining carbon footprint reductions in cloud computing. NABs paper illustrates their leadership in innovative methods to report carbon emissions in the cloud and aligns their best practices to underlying Alliance requirements. All of these documents are available in the ODCA Documents Library.

The PaaS interoperability usage model outlines requirements for rapid application deployment, application scalability, application migration and business continuity. The SaaS interoperability usage model makes applications available on demand, and encourages consistent mechanisms, enabling cloud subscribers to efficiently consume SaaS via standard interactions. In concert with these usage models, the Alliance published the ODCA Guide to Interoperability, which describes proposed requirements for interoperability, portability and interconnectivity. The documents are designed to ensure that companies are able to move workloads across clouds.

It is great to see IT customer driven or centric groups step and actually deliver content and material to help their peers, or in some cases competitors that compliments information provided by vendors and vendor driven trade groups.

As with technologies, tools and services that often are seen as competitive, a mistake would be viewing ODCA as or in competition with other industry trade groups and organizations or vise versa. Rather, IT organizations and vendors can and should leverage the different content from the various sources. This is an opportunity for example vendors to learn more about what the customers are thinking or concerned about as opposed to telling IT organizations what to be looking at and vise versa.

Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) logo

Granted some marketing organizations or even trade groups may not like that and view groups such as ODCA as giving away control of who decides what is best for them. Smart vendors, vars, business partners, consultants and advisors are and will leverage material and resources such as ODCA, and likewise, groups like ODCA are open to including a diverse membership unlike some pay to play industry vendor centric trade groups. If you are a vendor, var or business partner, don’t look at ODCA as a threat, instead, explore how your customers or prospects may be involved with, or using ODCA material and leverage that as a differentiator between you and your competitor.

Likewise don’t be scared of vendor centric industry trade groups, alliances or consortiums, even the pay to play ones can have some value, although some have more value than others. For example from a storage and storage networking perspective, there are the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) along with their various groups focused on Green and Energy along with Cloud Data Management Initiative (CDMI) related topics among others. There is also the SCSI Trade Association (STA) along with the Open Virtualization Alliance (OVA) not to mention the Open Fabric Alliance (OVA), Open Networking Foundation (ONF) and Computer Measurement Group (CMG) among many others that do good work and offer value with diverse content and offerings, some of which are free including to non members.

Learn more about the ODCA here, along with access various documents including usage models in the ODCA document library here.

While you are at, why not join StorageIO and other members by signing up to become a part of the ODCA here.