Tibco set to bring governance to the cloud

Middleware stalwart Tibco is getting ready to launch Tibco Silver, a tool for building enterprise grade applications on top of public cloud infrastructure. Governance, security and compliance are among the traits Silver is to bring to the cloud.

Middleware stalwart Tibco is getting ready to launch Tibco Silver, a tool for building enterprise grade applications on top of public cloud infrastructure. Initially, it will only run on top of Amazon EC2, with plans to support other cloud providers in the future. Tibco, which cut its teeth with superfast guaranteed messaging for Wall Street traders, intends to bring governance and other enterprise traits to the frontier of cloud.

Silver aims to bring the benefits of cloud architectures to businesses by automatically supporting all of the features required for mission critical applications. Rourke McNamara, director of product marketing at Tibco, noted, "We have been looking for a way to make the cloud useful to enterprise customers, and have talked to them about stumbling blocks such as the lack of governance, lack of portability of skill sets and code, and security."

The Tibco platform is designed such that every single application has governance control points built in, regardless of whether the developer thought about it. An IT manager can see what is going on with an application, check an audit log, add security or change permissions to access services to ensure enterprise compliance.

Developers can use existing code and write applications using most common languages and frameworks including Java, C++, Perl, Python, .NET, Spring and Ruby. They can compile the code using a Tibco Silver build of Eclipse, which does all of the back end work of adding governance, elasticity, and security capabilities.

A novel feature of Silver is the ability to automatically add or remove capacity without any special scaling code. McNamara said, "With traditional cloud scaling, it would be as if you had to call the electric company when you plugged in an air conditioner. With Tibco Silver, you just plug it into the outlet and then use the power you need."

Silver also features integration as a service, built on Tibco's core service bus technology, which simplifies the process of sending and receiving data with other enterprise applications like SAP, Oracle Financials and Siebel.

McNamara said that performance testing in the cloud is actually cheaper than doing it in house. He explained, "In the enterprise you would need to buy a dedicated machine with a high cost. With Tibco Silver, you would buy the test environment, and then when you are no longer testing, you can turn it off. The cost case is complex and not well understood, but it is a clear win when you have a development and test environment that are not used all of the time and you can turn it off. It also gives you a way to do load testing, because you can spin up hundreds of thousands of machines and then turn them off when you don't need them."

Tibco plans to launch a public beta of the technology this month and go live with commercial services in early 2010.

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