CenturyLink acquires AppFog to offer multicloud PaaS

Company extends its Savvis cloud offering to include enterprise developers and future cloud-based applications

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The startup brings with it open source technology. AppFog's PaaS orchestration software is based on VMware's Cloud Foundry platform, an open source platform now being developed commercially by Pivotal, a new business entity formed within the EMC federation. AppFog has extended Cloud Foundry's open source functionality by enhancing the user interface and experience and, more importantly, making it work across multiple cloud service providers such as Amazon Web Services, HP Cloud on OpenStack, and Microsoft Azure.

While AppFog is currently primarily led by a public cloud capability, CenturyLink said it plans to extend its reach by adding its public cloud PaaS to the savvisdirect online channel and offering private, dedicated deployments to Savvis's enterprise clients.

"CenturyLink is committed to taking our PaaS offering to the next level through significant investments," said Lucas Carlson, whose role prior to the acquisition was CEO at AppFog and who now serves as vice president and cloud evangelist at Savvis. "AppFog is going to evolve rapidly, both for the public and private cloud."

Carlson went on to say, "For our public cloud developers, this means more infrastructure options, increased levels of support, and accelerated launches of new features that our community has been asking for. We will soon be adding high-speed Savvis infrastructures options for deploying apps, including paid-only infrastructures with better reliability and performance. And for our private cloud developers within enterprises, we will soon be delivering AppFog-in-a-Box, a self-service private PaaS offering baked into Savvis's cloud offering."

Savvis currently has 55 data centers offering infrastructure services to enterprise IT managers. With the addition of AppFog to its cloud portfolio, CenturyLink can expand its corporate reach to include enterprise developers as well. Doing so should make it more likely that any new applications being developed for the cloud would run on the company's infrastructure.

Thus far, PaaS as a category hasn't really gained a lot of traction in the enterprise. In some cases, developers at companies will use these platforms hosted on public cloud infrastructures to build and test software, but when the time comes to actually deploy these applications, they are usually brought back in-house. CenturyLink hopes to turn that around.

The AppFog platform is available as a limited free service for small deployments, allowing developers to experience the service and gain a better understanding of how it works. But a fee-supported subscription starting at $20 a month is also available as the deployment size increases.

This article, "CenturyLink acquires AppFog to offer multicloud PaaS," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in virtualization at InfoWorld.com.

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