Automation solution specialist rPath used VMworld 2011 in Las Vegas as a coming-out party, embarking on a new channel strategy centered around the new rPath Cloud Application Engine. Read on for the details ...

"The big story around VMworld is that everyone is spinning up new infrastructure faster than ever but they're forgetting about the applications," said Shawn Edmondson, rPath's vice president of Product Strategy. "That's what our demo was focused on. Everyone wants the cloud for speed and convenience, but getting applications up is still as time-consuming as ever."

rPath demonstrated how its rPath Cloud Application Engine running on a Cisco-based automation stack, can get an end user's applications to run smoothly in a cloud environment. "Our engine focuses on consistency, reliability and speed," said rPath CTO Brett Adam. "When we look across the enterprise, the typical ones have a lot of different apps. Even the smaller companies. And when you have a lot of different applications that are evolving and changing, you get real challenges in consistently and reliably deploying those applications."

Edmonson and Adam noted rPath's demo got a favorable response at VMworld from MSPs looking to sell more cloud infrastructure to their end users. The best way to sell that infrastructure, according to rPath, is to have those end user applications run smoothly.

New Channel Strategy

Over the past year rPath has seen a great opportunity to manage applications in private clouds. The problem? Most companies don't want to assemble their own private cloud -- they either want to buy a cloud stack or rent a cloud service. That's why a direct sales model doesn't work for rPath, Adam said. Rather, the company has been busy lining up cloud service providers and embedding rPath's application automation solution into their infrastructures for the last five to seven months. As Adam put it, "We don't make the cloud, we make the cloud better." Here are three examples:

  1. Fujitsu has been targeting independent software vendors (ISVs) in the United Kingdom and has embedded rPath's application automation solution into its cloud offering.

  2. The U.S. arm of Cisco Systems is using rPath as part of the Cisco Cities project (Cisco's internal cloud project).

  3. Rackspace has integrated rPath automation into its cloud offering.


On the Way

What's next for rPath? APAC and further European channel opportunities were abundant at VMworld, Edmondson and Adam said, and rPath is working on additional private cloud integration deals. rPath is already in talks with Phoenix NAP to embed rPath's application automation solution into Phoenix NAP's cloud environment, which, according to Adam, is the first-ever "wholesale cloud." We'll look into it.