rPath is some thing I’ve been meaning to learn about for a while. I particularly like their view on the future of software and virtualisation, which is similar to my view of software appliances.
Linux.com | Talking virtualization with rPath
Another trend that Adams expects to become clearer by the end of 2007 is a concern about how to manage virtual applications. As virtual applications come into wider use, Adams suggests, “the normal cycle of supply and demand will actually result in everyone consuming more software.” If that happens, then the question becomes, “What sort of characteristics does a virtual appliance need to be more maintainable, more manageable?”
Traditionally, software vendors have assumed that management of their products is the customers’ concerns. However, as virtualization takes hold, Adams expects to see vendors as starting to offer managed services. “One of our hypotheses about what virtual appliances can do is freeing the end user from worrying about the IT stack, operating system, and other issues, because they’re essentially black box and having the software provide all that, which shifts responsibility and control” Adams says. “Now, [if that happens] you have to ask: ‘If I were a software vendor, what would I need?'”
Manageability is one of the aspects that I think will drive the uptake of Software Appliances. Virtualisations creates the platform to allow the outsourcing of application management to those best suited to handle, while allowing the client to retain ownership of their data and enviroment.