Edit 2012-11-03: Removed dead links.
It appears that cloud services are increasing. Now, Sun is also in the battle for the cloud-users. Sun do have a very big advantage – the name : “Behind every Cloud, You’ll see the Sun” 🙂
So far it seems to be no public sign-up but there is an information-registration form for those who are curious. Remains to be seen whether I will get an evaluation account soon. One thing that is interesting is Sun’s target groups:
Use the Cloud– best option for startups, research projects, or Web 2.0 developers who want a simple, low-cost way to “load and go.”
Leverage the Cloud– alternative for existing enterprises to offload overburdened IT infrastructures.
Build the Cloud– many large enterprises are experimenting with developing private clouds and standards.
Be the Cloud– service providers offer new value-added capabilities
Options one and two are pretty straightforward. But option three is interesting for large companies may (or equiv.) who do not trust the public clouds, but still want to take advantage of a cloud infrastructure. Finally, there also seems as if Sun wants to take a piece of service provider cake by offering infrastructure for application development (Web2.0 applications, Facebook apps, etc.).
What makes the initiative even more exciting is that Sun is already working with Amazon in the sense that they offer Open Solaris-ami: s using EC2. They will in some sense to compete with themselves. Exiting times ahead.