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New Ingram Micro Orchestration Tool Allows AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Bluemix To Be Managed From Single Portal

Ingram Micro has introduced a cloud offering that enables partners to deploy and manage Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and IBM Bluemix from a single screen.

Ingram Micro has introduced an offering that enables partners to deploy and manage Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and IBM Bluemix from a single screen.

The Irvine, Calif.-based distributor said each of the public cloud providers has its own configuration and orchestration tools.

But solution providers typically don't want to be locked into a single Infrastructure-as-a-Service option, preferring instead to retain the ability to choose between multiple public cloud technologies depending on the needs of a specific customer, according to Renee Bergeron, Ingram Micro's senior vice president of global cloud.

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Bergeron said creating a single portal where channel partners can simplify, automate and orchestrate solutions regardless of which IaaS provider they use is really just an extension of Ingram Micro's existing cloud strategy.

"Today, we give partners a single portal where they can order, provision, manage their subscriptions and invoice their customers," Bergeron told CRN. "So the next logical thing is to also give them the tools they need to manage some of the more complex solutions like Infrastructure-as-a-Service."

The Cloud Orchestrator is available now to Odin Automation Premium customers, the company said, and will be extended to all Cloud Marketplace resellers during the current quarter.

Bergeron said Ingram Micro's new Cloud Orchestrator uses container technology to simplify deployment in a public cloud-type environment.

The Cloud Orchestrator leverages the intellectual property of cloud software firm Concerto – which Ingram Micro acquired for $500,000 in November – to help facilitate a multi-cloud strategy, Bergeron said. The distributor purchased Concerto from cloud and Internet of Things-sector investor Tern PLC, which had in turn acquired Concerto and Flexiant Research in June, according to media reports at the time.

Ingram Micro said its Cloud Orchestrator takes advantage of automated tools and pre-configured templates to help solution providers rapidly build and deploy workloads into leading public and private cloud environments.

Solution providers can better manage customer infrastructure through the Cloud Orchestrator, the distributor said, providing the channel with multiple cloud deployment options, ongoing monitoring, reporting and unified billing.

John Weidenhammer, president of Weidenhammer Systems, said it's complicated for solution providers to learn enough about AWS, Azure and Bluemix to be proficient at doing the setup.

If Ingram Micro's portal can simplify the procurement, configuration and management of public cloud technology, Weidenhammer said it would be a "home run" for the Reading, Pa.-based solution provider.

To gain traction in the channel, Weidenhammer said the Cloud Orchestrator will need to be easier and less expensive than going directly through Amazon, Microsoft or IBM. Weidenhammer said he hopes Ingram Micro's tool will reduce the learning curve, provide partners with a good time advantage, and avoid adding additional expense as compared to interfacing directly with the vendor.

"It's a fairly heavy lift to do a good job with this, but if Ingram has wrestled that monster to the ground, it's a good thing," Weidenhammer said. "The idea is terrific."

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