The number of the failures in Cloud Computing is rising rapidly. Google Mail has had a number of outages of more than 12 hours and other Google Apps are having stability and up time problems. Microsoft Azure was out for 22 hours, Amazon, Magnolia, Carbonite, Media Temple are just some of the others who are having problems.
So forget security, orchestration or costs. The perception of always available is meeting the engineering reality of “we can do it most of the time for that money”
The Vista Effect
Many people say that Microsoft Vista is now ready for use. Some three years after it was released and two service packs, it seems ready for use but no-one is buying.
No-one believes Microsoft. The rivers of blood and bile about its problems and performance, bad drivers, no backward compatibility, no drivers for old hardware, drivers not installing when upgrading from Windows XP etc. etc. etc. The vast majority of users don’t know any of this, all they know is that Vista is a lemon and you shouldn’t buy it.
Clouds and the Vista effect
It won’t take much the in current environment for Cloud Computing to get the same reputation. And with the levels of interdependence between sub-systems, one outage is likely to take out an entire system with a single failure. Most vexing, is that the outage will be caused by human error.
The levels of integration and testing needed to build a fault tolerant cloud system are not available today. Put simply, if Google can’t do it with their money and talent pool, then it really is not possible. Assembling a Cloud yourself with multiple vendors and incoherent technologies is not going to have a global up time of five nines including upgrades and 6
Even the best run enterprises, with enormous budgets and resources, are still regularly planning shutdowns of various systems to perform upgrades.
You can’t shake Bad News
It will only take a few more outages of the major “Cloud Computing” vendors and the market perception will be set. Any future marketing and sales will need to overcome the objection of poor performance.
More importantly, the CIO will start to realise that Cloud Computing is no different to what they already have. And possibly, much much worse because he has no control over the outcome (although, the ability to blame a third party is vert attractive to some organisations).
Thats when the Vista effect will have stalled or stopped Cloud Computing.