At first glance, the so-called Intel Hybrid Cloud effort is built atop Windows Small Business Server (SBS) or Microsoft's full-blown Windows Server. But The VAR Guy has been busy poking around -- trying to determine if the Intel Hybrid Cloud also will include some Linux options. An answer could emerge at the CompTIA Breakaway conference (Aug. 9-12, San Antonio). Here's some early speculation as only The VAR Guy can deliver it...

First, some background. The Intel Hybrid Cloud solution, under development now, melds an on-premises server with a range of cloud- and SaaS-based options -- such as security as a service or online backup. In theory, VARs and MSPs can deploy Intel Hybrid Cloud servers on a customer's premise, while adding value with a range of remote managed services and SaaS applications.

Intel previewed the Hybrid Cloud concept at Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Conference  (WPC10) in July 2010. Since that time, it's become clear that Intel intends to work with open- and closed-source partners on the project.

What About Linux?

But that's not all. Sources say Intel has approached ClearFoundation and ClearCenter about leveraging ClearOS -- a Linux-based solution -- for the Intel Hybrid Cloud. It sounds like Intel plans to leverage ClearCenter's expertise in VMs for network, gateway and server services, at times replacing and/or integrating with Microsoft Active Directory. Plus, ClearCenter Products (such as ClearSDN Cloud Services) may be sold via the Intel Hybrid Cloud offering, the sources add.

Alas, lots of people remain mum regarding the potential Intel-ClearCenter relationship. Representatives from ClearCenter, ClearFoundation and Intel did not reply to The VAR Guy's request for comments. The VAR Guy also needs to determine if Intel will reach out to folks like Red Hat, Novell and Canonical for additional on-premises Linux solutions...

Answers to those questions could emerge soon enough. The VAR Guy suspects ClearCenter and Intel team members may surface at CompTIA's Breakaway event for channel partners, which kicks off Aug. 9 in San Antonio.

Stay tuned.

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