Sun Caroline to Compete with Amazon AWS?

Yesterday, Data Center knowledge reported that Sun was working on a Cloud Platform to compete with Amazon AWS: Project Caroline. The data behind the report comes from a upcoming Java One 2008 presentation by Sun Distinguished Engineer, Bob Scheifler. The talk announcement and synopsis is posted at: and, even better, the slides are already up at:

The full functionality supported by Caroline is actually beyond that offered by Amazon AWS. Included is:

· Virtualizes key resources such as network and compute and provides horizontally scaled pool for each

o Programmatic control of resource allocation, increasing or decreasing without human interaction,

· Java VMs (rather than offer fully general Virtual Machines as Amazon does with EC2, the Java APIs are offered as the only programming abstraction)

· Identity provider

· Eclipse based dev tools

· ZFS file system with storage reservation, access controls, snapshots (with rollback) and quotas

· Database (PostgreSQL)

· Networking: VLAN control, VPN support, dynamic NAT, L4 and L7 load balancing, DNS config

Overall it looks pretty interesting – the concepts all look good. The true test and the measure of whether this will actually be an AWS competitors won’t come until the service is made available at scale. Nonetheless, its great seeing more pay-as-you-go service offerings coming available.


James Hamilton, Windows Live Platform Services
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