Enterprise Management Associates published a well written overview of the current state of the Software Defined Datacenter. And it is a very good idea to start of with the definition of the SDDC:
The ultimate goal of the SDDC is to abstract and centralize the management of compute, network, storage, operating systems, middleware and applications in order to dynamically place workloads where they can run in the most cost efficient, secure and compliant manner.
As we can expect from an analyst group we get lists and some predictions for the future. Whereas most of the components have a very focused prediction or there not that many players is not very clear to me. But the one that grabs my attention is Network Virtualization. Partly because of the subject itself but also because of the large list of vendors to focus on.
I think that that list needs to be broken up into the four quadrants Jason Edelman is proposing:
Programmability, Controller Based Networking, Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), and Overlays
For me the real challenge of the SDDC is in the Automation and Orchestration field:
While automation and orchestration are recognized as some of the most important IT topics today, IT silos are still common. Based on EMA research, almost half of enterprises believe that technology silos and a lack of automation constitute a significant problem, preventing many of their IT projects from achieving their maximum ROI.
If we can close the gap between the network and systems, only then we can truly speak of the Software Defined Datacenter. Frameworks like Open Stack do their best to close that gap and like I posted yesterday, the challenge is only partly in technology. The referenced silos are mostly people.
Again, we have exciting times ahead of us.