The Enterprise Grid Alliance (EGA), formed last year to promote use of computing grids in enterprises, will announce five new members on Tuesday, including Unisys and Univa.
But the organization still is without important vendors IBM, Microsoft, and BEA Systems.
Signing onto the organization are Unisys, open source middleware vendor Univa, infrastructure developer UK e-Science Core Programme, Infiniband vendor Voltaire, and the technology industry analyst firm The 451 Group. EGA now has 30 member organizations, including Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Dell, Oracle, and Sun Microsystems.
“The significance [of the new members] I think is [it’s] primarily a momentum point about the increasing membership and awareness of the important work EGA is uniquely doing,” said Peter ffoulkes, chairman of the marketing steering committee at EGA and director of high performance and technical computing at Sun.
However, with vendors such as Microsoft and IBM not in the fray, EGA may find it difficult to build an industrywide consensus. EGA has had continuing conversations with Microsoft about participating, for one, ffoulkes said.
While Microsoft did not respond to an inquiry Monday afternoon about its intentions regarding EGA, IBM and BEA reaffirmed they will sit this one out, at least for now.
IBM in a prepared statement cited the existence of multiple grid groups in its decision not to join.
“IBM welcomes the recognition by EGA members of the importance of grid computing,” the company said. “However, IBM believes existing organizations are sufficient and working well. In particular, the Global Grid Forum, OASIS and the Internet Engineering Task Force provide open forums with wide industry support.”
BEA, also in a prepared statement, said it was “assessing the right standards and business partners that would be relevant for an application server platform and enterprise computing, rather than the entire world of grid applications.”
“That being said, the EGA does seem to be focused on some of the right areas, and BEA will see how it develops before making any decisions,” the company said.
EGA’s ffoulkes said he did not believe there was overlap among the different industry groups centered on grid computing. Each has different focuses, he stressed.
EGA lately has been working on communication and awareness of the grid needs of for-profit companies, forming relationships with other grid-focused organizations and setting up technical working groups. Working groups have been formed for reference models, component provisioning, data provisioning, security, and utility accounting, ffoulkes said.