Why California's Department of Technology Embarked on CalCloud

With CalCloud infrastructure, Office of Technology Services Chief Davood Ghods says the state of California has taken a huge leap forward in meeting and exceeding demand for cost-effective IT solutions.

by Davood Ghods / December 3, 2014
At the CalCloud platform launch event in Sacramento, Calif., Government Operation Agency Undersecretary Tony Perez (pictured left) and IBM Fellow Kerrie Holley (pictured right) announced CalCloud, a new technology model powered by cloud computing to build and deliver more innovative government services and savings. Flickr/ibmphoto4
At the CalCloud platform launch event in Sacramento, Calif., Government Operation Agency Undersecretary Tony Perez (pictured left) and IBM Fellow Kerrie Holley (pictured right) announced CalCloud, a new technology model powered by cloud computing to build and deliver more innovative government services and savings. Flickr/ibmphoto4

Governments everywhere must procure technology quickly to meet growing demands for IT services. They also need the flexibility to quickly scale those resources, up or down, consistent with private-sector practices. Government needs cost-effective solutions that provide highly secure infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offerings that can be delivered to all departments, counties, and municipalities. With CalCloud infrastructure, the state of California has taken a huge leap forward in meeting and exceeding these demands.

“CalCloud is an important step toward providing faster and more cost-effective IT services to California state departments and ultimately to the citizens of California,” said Marybel Batjer, secretary of the California Government Operations Agency.

The Solution

The CalCloud concept is the first of its kind to be implemented in North America at the state level. The infrastructure provides a common cloud management and automation platform that supports Windows, Linux and AIX platforms. CalCloud is a private cloud located in the state’s two tier 3 data centers so data stored in CalCloud never leaves the state’s control.

Unique Value

By provisioning IaaS from within the state’s existing data centers, CalCloud combines the best of private and public cloud computing. Its security model is designed for multi-tenancy and operates as a private community cloud. The infrastructure includes a comprehensive self-service portal that provides users with rich reporting and management capabilities. This allows departments to manage their individual compute requirements in the cloud. One of the unique aspects of CalCloud is the ability to take a standard set of services and offer them statewide.
 
CalCloud is based on IBM’s Open Cloud platform and combines technology from a variety of technology providers such as AT&T, Cisco, Intel, Fortinet, VMware, Brocade Communications Systems and NetApp. It functions as an open ecosystem for innovation in cloud computing. Its open design makes it possible to integrate cloud technologies and services from a variety of vendors.
 
The CalCloud infrastructure model gives the California Department of Technology a new way to deliver technology services. It puts control in the hands of individual customers and departments that are going to use the technology. In addition, it provides a faster way to adopt new technology, a scalable and extensible service model to support all of California’s public sector, schools, cities, counties or state agencies — all with the same quality, security and innovation.

Developments Since Launch Day

Since CalCloud launched on July 24, the Department of Technology has onboarded early adopter tenants including the State Controller’s Office, Secretary of State, Department of Motor Vehicles, Emergency Management Services Authority, Department of Food and Agriculture, City of Rohnert Park, Department of Industrial Relations and Environmental Protection Agency and have initiated the migration of our own internal applications. Currently there are service requests from more than 20 public-sector organizations.
 
Over time, the Department of Technology intends to continue its cloud solutions with offerings for platform as a service and software as a service. The information technology industry is rapidly changing, and this new offering is evidence that the Department of Technology is changing with it.
 
This story was originally published by TechWire
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