TIBCO moves into clouds with their Silver platform

September 29th, 2011 | by Chan Chi-Loong

Few technology vendors — if they have any ambitions — can ignore the cloud.

Customers demand it and vendors better have an answer.

Case in point software stack infrastructure player TIBCO, who today just announced the formal launch of TIBCO Silver, their suite of cloud-based solutions. The announcement was made at TUCON 2011, their big annual customer event held in Las Vegas.

According to Ivan Casanova, director of product marketing at TIBCO, TIBCO Silver is a “21st century solution” for private, hybrid and public clouds.

One of the offerings is TIBCO Silver Fabric, which allows a cloud administrator to easily manage a private or hybrid cloud deployment.

One example that TIBCO gave on how TIBCO Silver Fabric works is where compute servers are run in a public cloud – say, Amazon Web Services – but access to this is through the TIBCO Silver Fabric hosted on a private cloud.

Through a few clicks of the TIBCO Silver Fabric web-based interface, engineers can easily set-up software stacks – for example, an Apache web server with an Oracle database – and TIBCO Silver Fabric will automatically deploy the requisite compute resources necessary on the public cloud.

The proposition is that hybrid solutions like this is the best of both worlds as it leverages on the cost effectiveness of public clouds, but yet is secure and gives better performance.

To me it sounded very much like a virtualization type of technology. Ivan cautioned that TIBCO Silver Fabric wasn’t a hypervisor kind of solution however – which is virtualization at the OS level, where players like VMWare and Citrix play best in. One good way to think of TIBCO Silver Fabric is that it is virtualization at the application level.

Beyond TIBCO Silver Fabric, which caters to private clouds, TIBCO is also launching TIBCO Silver Marketplace, which is a public cloud offering. According to TIBCO, TIBCO Silver Marketplace is hosted by them in a secure, non-disclosed location.

For now, data sharing solution Formvine is the only SaaS (Software-as-a-service) available on the TIBCO Silver marketplace. Other parts of the TIBCO range of enterprise software, like business analytics tool Spotfire and customer engagement tool Loyalty Labs will be available soon, Ivan said.

Another part of the public cloud offering is TIBCO Silver Grid, which is a high performance compute grid kind of solution, where you can rent compute cycles.

It is really nascent times for TIBCO Silver, which is officially just a day old. It seems to me that TIBCO Silver was cobbled up in reaction to cloud requests from TIBCO’s customer base, and they are trying to leverage experiences they learnt to see if it will stick with other customers.

Whether it will all work out in the long run remains to be seen, but one thing is clear: The cloud is here to stay.

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