IndependenceIT's Cloud Workspace Suite gains Google integration

IndependenceIT adds Google Compute Engine integration to its Cloud Workspace Suite, giving providers an option beyond the Microsoft Azure platform.

IndependenceIT yesterday announced it will offer Google Compute Engine integration for its Cloud Workspace Suite, a hypervisor-agnostic services platform for the delivery of applications and desktop as a service, giving the vendor's service provider partners an additional cloud platform option. IndependenceIT launched Cloud Workspace Suite a year ago running natively on the Microsoft Azure platform.

In March, at the Google Cloud Platform Live event held in San Francisco, Google announced support for Windows Server 2008 R2-based virtual machines and dramatic price reductions of up to 80% across its cloud computing services, a move that gave Independence IT service providers a compelling opportunity in the data center, according to Charles Buck, CTO and co-founder of IndependenceIT.

"[The Google integration] gives our partners a new opportunity for what is arguably the premier brand in the data center and internetworking between data centers at a very compelling price point. It allows our partners to stand up DaaS [desktop as a service] with the Google Compute Engine as another option," Buck said.

IndependenceIT will offer a Cloud Workspace Suite (CWS) application programming interface (API) for integration with Google Compute Engine specifically for management and provisioning capabilities. The API is hypervisor-neutral and currently runs on OpenStack, Hyper-V and VMware.

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Google has its own interface to its implementation of OpenStack for running the Google Compute Engine.

Buck expects to see a good deal of interest in the Google Compute Engine among its 120 direct service provider partners whose reseller partners -- and their customers -- are looking for a big brand name for deployments. In February, IndependenceIT and Arrow Electronics announced an integration and distribution agreement allowing Arrow's Enterprise Computing Solutions (ECS) to market, sell and support IndependenceIT's Cloud Workspace DaaS solution in its ArrowSphere online marketplace.

A couple of key benefits of the Google Compute Engine option include quick time to market and less need for an experienced IT support team to stand up a virtual Daas offering, the company said.

Uptake by IndependenceIT partners on the Azure platform has been sluggish because of Microsoft's higher pricing compared with Google Compute Cloud, according to Buck. This latest Google enhancement to its CWS offering provides an alternative and a less costly option for partners to build virtual data centers, he said.

Yesterday's announcement was good news for Clark Crook, director of tech care and responsible for IndependenceIT's Cloud Workspace product at Earthlink Business in Buffalo, New York. "We're encouraged by any expansion of the DaaS ecosystem. It continues to mainstream DaaS as a desktop solution," he said.

Earthlink Business has been an IndependenceIT partner and selling DaaS for about two years. The MSP offers IndependenceIT's CWS on its own systems, in its own data center via Earthlink interconnections.

"The Google integration doesn't directly change anything for us," Crook said. "We will continue offering DaaS as we always have," he added.

According to Crook, the uptake of DaaS is on the rise, particularly, among SMBs.

Google integration for CWS is scheduled for availability in the third quarter.

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