Friday, October 5, 2012

Bridge the Gap to Cloud



Many of our customers ask us how to best bring their team up to speed on cloud concepts in general, and Eucalyptus concepts in particular. To address these needs, we implemented a comprehensive training and certification program. In this blog text I will try to outline for you what we have available, and how it can address the knowledge gaps in your organization. Our curriculum is developed and delivered in ways that other open source cloud computing vendors simply can't match. This can be useful information for you no matter what stage in cloud adoption you are, or what cloud platforms you have evaluated in the past.

Flexible Content Development and Delivery

Eucalyptus has implemented an innovative flexible content development and delivery model that gives you standardized options, flexibility, and choice that are unmatched in the industry. For example, our core Cloud Administrator class, Eucalyptus 3: Design, Build, and Manage (known internally as our “DBM” course), is a three-day instructor-led course that allows the student to install, configure, and work with the components in a Eucalyptus cloud using the same methods one would use in a production deployment. If you are a busy system administrator or consultant and you can't find three contiguous days to take a class - not a problem! The DBM class was actually designed from the beginning as a collection of five separate standalone courses in our Cloud Connections series. The first day of the DBM course is frequently delivered as a one-day class, Cloud Connections: Install and Configure. Later, if you have another day available, you can take the second day of the DBM class, which is offered as Cloud Connections: Work with Instances and Images. Three additional Cloud Connections courses make up the final day of the DBM course, and can be taken in roughly half-day increments.

One recent student in an Install and Configure class commented on how useful this flexibility was to him. He was an experienced AWS user and had a good grasp on working with images, security groups, and most other cloud user topics. He was struggling, however, to get Eucalyptus up and running for an internal proof of concept. The Install and Configure class gave him the information he needed to get his cloud up and running internally and move forward with a successful trial.

Other open source cloud computing vendors offer training classes, but they are only available in select locations and require a minimum commitment of thousands of dollars. Eucalyptus also delivers training through Authorized Partners and in multiple languages and time zones around the world. This flexibility provides a number of alternatives that can save you time and money. For example, if you are new to cloud computing and want a “non-marketing” overview of the topics and technologies, you can sign up for one of our most popular courses: Cloud Connections: Cloud Foundations. For only $79 and four hours of your time you can get past all of the cloud washing and marketing and get to the bottom of the terminology and concepts around cloud from a highly technical perspective. Nearly all of the Cloud Connections courses include hands-on exercises and range from five to eight hours to deliver.

In a recent Cloud Foundations class, one student commented that he had recently attended a two-day training class from another open source cloud computing provider. While their class had provided a technical overview of their product, he still did not have a clear idea about why he should be looking at cloud computing. The Cloud Foundations class gave him the conceptual background he needed to understand cloud computing, as well as the technical and licensing differences between Eucalyptus and other open source cloud computing products.  He got exactly what he needed with a much smaller investment of both time and money than the first class.

If you can't find a live class that fits your schedule, Eucalyptus also offers a number of free eLearning courses via Eucalyptus University that allow you to consume technical content on your own schedule. Be sure to check out the free Cloud Fundamentals recording as well as the soon-to-be-launched (and still free) Evaluate Eucalyptus course recordings.

Flexible High-Stakes Technical Certification

This flexible delivery mindset extends to our technical certification programs as well. In June, we launched the Eucalyptus Certified Professional on Eucalyptus 3 (EUCP3) technical certification. You can take the EUCP3 exam from any location in the world - including your home or office, as long as you meet eligibility and technical requirements. Regardless of where you take it, it's still a high-stakes, formal, proctored (monitored), statistically validated certification program. Other open source cloud companies just throw together quiz questions, let you take an unmonitored web test, and grant you a certificate which most likely has very little value in the market. Some certification programs force you to travel to a specific location to take a low-level cloud user (not administrator) "certification exam" that still has not been statistically validated. With Eucalyptus Certification Programs, not only do you get an exam that has been thoroughly vetted using the best practices in technical certifications today, you get innovative, remote delivery, and a certification which validates real-world knowledge and problem solving derived from our experience of deploying large-scale production Eucalyptus environments. 

Flexible Future for Education Services

From eBooks and remote labs to social media and eLearning, we like to think we are on the cutting edge of technical training and certification programs for open source cloud software. We’ve innovated with new approaches in order to better serve our customers. That said, our most powerful resource is the creativity and ingenuity of our community. If you have ideas or suggestions to make our offerings even more flexible and convenient, please let us know. We look forward to hearing from you, or seeing you in one of our upcoming classes!

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