Mike Laverick at mikelaverick.com introduced me today to Bare Metal Cloud for the purpose of running AutoLab. For those of you who haven’t seen or heard about AutoLab yet it’s a tool developed by the vCommunity (Alastair Cooke, Nick Marshall and others) that lets you automate the process of setting up and rebuilding home labs for the purpose of training on VMware vSphere products. So what is this all about?
As Mike covers in his article normally AutoLab would take a couple of hours to build (up to 4), but with Bare Metal Cloud it could take as little as 40 minutes. Bare Metal Cloud is like a virtual cloud but they automatically provision physical hosts. This is quite an interesting concept and it allows you to run all sorts of additional solutions in your cloud, such as a dedicated vSphere environment for example (and AutoLab). If you didn’t want to invest in your own lab environment at home this could be a very viable alternative. Better yet Mike has arranged for the first 100 people to use this a $100 credit as a promo offer. I would recommend that you check out Mike’s article Bare Metal Cloud for the purpose of running AutoLab and Bare Metal Cloud. Hopefully other VMware Cloud Service providers might offer AutoLab in their vCloud environments at some point in the future. It certainly makes a great training and testing tool.
The Bare Metal Cloud concept is quite an interesting one and worthwhile looking into. There is no reason why this couldn’t be done in your private cloud using tools such as VMware vCloud Automation Center (vCAC) and in addition to some professional services. Of course you may not have the same scales of economy that Bare Metal Cloud can offer. vCAC can deploy physical as well as virtual systems, so essentially you could have a dynamic physical as well as virtual environment. This might be useful if you want to automatically change physical hosts between roles in vSphere environments based on different cyclical events, times of year, or different hours of the day. This also allows you to provision many different IT services that your business users may require. VMware’s investments into the hybrid cloud arena including physical provisioning I think will pay off big time in the long run. Like virtualization was originally this will be a journey. It’s great to see companies like Bare Metal Cloud offering unique and interesting services that are easy and frictionless to consume.
This post first appeared on the Long White Virtual Clouds blog at longwhiteclouds.com, by Michael Webster +. Copyright © 2013 – IT Solutions 2000 Ltd and Michael Webster +. All rights reserved. Not to be reproduced for commercial purposes without written permission.