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VCE and hybrid cloud in the real world

The CTO of a health care services company explains his undying love for the private cloud powers of the Virtual Computing Environment.

Weekly cloud computing update

I feel like a VCE stalker. At conferences, in bathrooms, at the deli counter downstairs -- my ears prick up when I hear those letters. I am intrigued to find out who is using this product and why.

William Moore is CTO of CareCore National, a health care services company, and man does he love VCE. You'd think he got it for free but no, far from it.

It's a great cloud-enabling technology.

William Moore, CTO of CareCore National, on VCE

I asked Moore this week if he thought CareCore was seeing the benefits of Moore's Law (meaning constantly increasing power at decreased costs) by standardizing his infrastructure on VCE. He laughed, really loud.

"That's not the magic they bring," he said.

The thing he loves about VCE is the integration of several major blocks of technology that provide a level of automation in the infrastructure upon which Moore can build IT services.

"It's a great cloud-enabling technology, great shoulders to build upon," he said. "But cloud is not nearly as steeped in technology as it is in business processes."

The real work in building CareCore's private cloud came in reengineering the company’s business processes to deliver IT services to the organization.

Moore was ruthless in adopting VCE, killing certain apps and rewriting others to take advantage of the integrated system. Yet not everything runs on VCE. CareCore has some midrange IBM gear that runs the company’s adjudication claims engine. This application is written in RPG and uses DB2 as its back-end database. It wasn't cost-effective to rewrite this beast for VCE; instead, Moore was able to wrap an Intel layer around it so that he can pull it back into the VCE environment.

Interestingly, he refers to this as hybrid cloud, connecting legacy gear to his next-gen cloud system. Sounds like a valid definition, given that he talked about "flexing workloads" between the two environments in the same way vendors talk about moving workloads between public and private clouds. Perhaps Moore's definition is the one that's closer to the actual use case for hybrid cloud.

Jo Maitland is the Senior Executive Editor for Contact her at

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