Thursday, September 11, 2008

Oslo, Red Dog, and Virtual Computational Substrates - Oh My!

Of late I've been contemplating the interplay between Oslo and lower level aspects of Microsoft's cloud initiative. This recent Microsoft job listing provides some insight into those basement levels of Microsoft's 'cloud stack':

"The Cloud Infrastructure Services (CIS) team is responsible for creating the Microsoft Utility Computing Platform, also known by its early codename Red Dog (RD). This platform is one of the lowest levels of the services software/hardware stack and includes an efficient, virtualized computational substrate, a fully automated service management system and a comprehensive set of highly scalable storage services. The platform will enable services to scale to millions of machines distributed globally throughout Microsoft data centers. Further, it will provide the lowest operating costs per-node, and will lead the marketplace as the best platform for rapid development, deployment, and maintenance of internet services and applications. CIS is a young and hungry team that is on the path to delivering a V1 product to external customers in the coming year."

What I'm curious about is what role Oslo's modeling and repository plays within this 'v1 product' and in the command and control of 'virtual data centers'. I'm interested because that is the implication of what is represented in the following image - just how far down the 'cloud stack' will Oslo's modeling language and repository reach?

My own guess is - really deep - as in the possibility we'll see some new infrastructure variants of XAML related to the configuration, deployment, provisioning, and administration of not only the 'Red Dog' cloud application layer, but also the lower 'virtualized computational substrate' layer. One can also guess PowerShell will play a leading role managing this 'cloud stack' as well, so I'm equally curious about how PowerShell will be woven into the mix with Oslo's modeling and repository.

All in all, it will be interesting to see exactly how things unfold as it looks like Microsoft is counting on a high level of [virtual] data center automaiton being key to the success, reliability, and differentiation of their cloud initiative.

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