A framework for management of cloud services
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The rapid growth of various types of cloud services is creating new opportunities for innovative enterprise applications. Organisations are using cloud services to deliver significant parts of their enterprise system instead of on-premises implementation. However, existing traditional software engineering lifecycle models are not adequate in the cloud context, and a comprehensive framework for managing cloud services from the consumer perspective throughout all phases of the lifecycle has not been fully described in the literature. This thesis addresses the following key research questions: “What lifecycle methodology should be used by cloud service consumers?” and “What framework is required to support this lifecycle methodology?” To address these research questions, this thesis is concerned with how to develop cloud service-oriented enterprise applications from the service consumer perspective. For the purposes of this work, a cloud system development lifecycle is proposed, and a supporting framework is developed. This research also aims to expand the understanding of the challenges of using cloud services in enterprise application management. The main contributions of this thesis are the Service Consumer System Development Lifecycle (SC-SDLC), the Service Consumer Framework (SCF), a set of failover strategies for improving application reliability and a multi-site monitoring model for managing cloud services proactively. The SC-SDLC is the cloud lifecycle that is used to develop cloud service-oriented enterprise applications. Supporting the SC-SDLC activities, the SCF is implemented to manage cloud services from the consumer perspective. The failover strategies are designed to handle the problems of service disruptions, and the multi-site monitoring model is designed to monitor cloud services for the purposes of service selection and application optimisation. Using a research approach based on design science and action research, the SC-SDLC and SCF are the results of an iteration process between the core activities of building and evaluating using a case study. By working closely with the team members of a real-world project for developing a hospital management system, the lifecycle activities and the framework features are being continuously improved during the project execution phase. Additionally, to evaluate the failover strategies, a simulation environment is set up to provide a comparison of the theoretical calculation results with the experimental measurements. A separate simulation environment is also used to demonstrate the applicability of the multi-site monitoring model in selecting cloud services and application optimisation.
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