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Cloud Computing Standards Organizations

Many cloud computing organizations and informal groups are focused on addressing standards issues in regards to the cloud environment. These standards bodies help maintain a standards and best practices to ensure that different providers and equipment are able to work together.

Several standards organizations have gotten together to create a cloud standards coordination wiki. This allows all the different groups to post their work in one spot.

Cloud Security Alliance

The Cloud Security Alliance was formed to promote a series of best practices to provide security assurance in cloud computing. Its objectives include promoting understanding, researching best practices, launching awareness campaigns with the goal of creating a consensus on ways to ensure cloud security.

Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF)

The DMTF focuses on IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), and providing standards that enable IaaS to be a flexible, scalable, high-performance infrastructure.

The DMTF is the group that developed the OVF standard that is formally known as DSP0243 Open Virtualization Format (OVF) V1.0.0. It describes an open, secure, and portable format for packaging and distribution of software that will be run in virtual machines.

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

NIST is a nonregulatory federal agency whose goal is to promote innovation and United States competitiveness by advancing standards, measurement science, and technology. They are focused on helping federal agencies understand cloud computing.

Open Cloud Consortium (OCC)

The OCC goal is to support the development of standards for cloud computing and frameworks for interoperating between clouds. The OCC has a number of different working groups devoted to varying aspects of cloud computing.

Open Grid Forum (OGF)

The OGF is an open community that focuses on driving the adoption and evolution of distributed computing. This includes everything from distributed high-performance computing resources to horizontally scaled transactional systems supporting SOA as well as the cloud.

The Object Management Group (OMG)

The OMG is an international group focused on developing enterprise integration standards for a wide range of industries including government, life sciences, and healthcare. The group provides modeling standards for software and other processes.

Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA)

The SNIA is focused on developing storage solution specifications and technologies, global standards, and storage education. This organization’s mission is “to promote acceptance, deployment, and confidence in storage-related architectures, systems, services, and technologies, across IT and business communities”.

Cloud Computing Interoperability Forum (CCIF)

The Cloud Computing Interoperability Forum provides discussion forums to create a cloud computing ecosystem where organizations can work together. A major focus is on creating a framework that enables two or more cloud platforms to exchange information in a unified way.

Vertical industry groups

In addition to these standards groups and discussion groups, vertical industry groups are also beginning to look at cloud standards.

Examples include

  • Telemanagement Forum (TM Forum): This large group consists of service providers, cable and network operators, software suppliers, equipment suppliers, and systems integrators. It recently began working in the telecommunications initiative for cloud computing.

  • Association for Retail Technology Standards (ARTS): The goal of this group is to create an open environment where retailers and technology vendors can work together to create international retail technology standards. Recently, this group also started looking at researching this space and developing white papers to address cloud issues for this vertical.

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