SAP heads to Terremark cloud
- By Kathleen Hickey, Special to GCN
- Aug 28, 2009
SAP, an enterprise resource planning software widely used by government agencies, is being adapted for use in a cloud platform supported by Terremark Worldwide and VMware.
Terremark will provide hosting services for SAP solutions that will run on VMware’s virtualization platform. The hosted solution is anticipated to allow customers to achieve significant cost savings. Terremark is the first service provider to host SAP solutions.
Several government agencies run on SAP software, including the Defense and Interior departments, the U.S. Postal Service, the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy, and NASA, as well as several state and local government entities.
Government users will be able to access the software from a pre-allocated pool of dedicated computing resources. Additionally, the cloud model provides a flexible “burst mode” that allows clients to access additional computing power as needed, reducing the need for continual power that may not be used during normal load periods and thus reducing costs. Agencies will be able to use Terremark’s managed security services, including vulnerability assessments, log aggregation and event correlation, network session flow analysis, attack replay, and application firewall management.
A web portal allows users to configure and manage the servers by role and allocate resources by utilization. The system supports Microsoft Windows, Linux and Sun Solaris operating systems.
The General Services Administration announced its move of the USA.gov government search site, and its Spanish equivalent, GobiernoUSA.gov, to a Terremark cloud platform earlier this year.
However, the service provided by Terremark for GSA may not, strictly speaking, be cloud computing, at least by the draft definitions issued by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Two of NIST’s key attributes for cloud computing are the ability for capabilities to quickly scale up and down and for these capabilities to be charged using a “metered, fee-for-service or advertising-based billing model.”
Terremark reportedly arranged to bill GSA on a monthly basis with multiple pricing tiers, but no discounts are offered if an agency uses less than the full capacity. If customers use more than their estimated processing power they are charged an overage fee.
Kathleen Hickey is a freelance writer for GCN.