This special issue compiles a number of excellent technical contributions that significantly advance the state-of-the-art in utility and cloud computing comprising selected and extended contributions from the UCC 2010, the 2010 International Conference on Utility and Cloud Computing, held in Chennai, India, in December 2010. Papers selected for UCC 2010 were peer-reviewed by 2–3 reviewers. Authors have improved their papers based on conference reviews and presented them at UCC 2010 in India. Based on the feedback authors received at the conference, they have further extended their papers and submitted them to FGCS. All papers submitted to FGCS are further reviewed to meet its high standard expectation. Authors were requested to revise their papers to address comments from FGCS reviewers and to resubmit them. These revised papers were finally accepted by the Editor-In- Chief of FGCS for publication in this special issue.
Selected papers reflect the current trends and challenges in establishing reliable, self-adaptable, and economy-driven Clouds and Utility computing infrastructure, platforms, and applications. It is important to note that even the most sophisticated Cloud
infrastructure can fail to reach the critical consumer mass, if the market mechanisms do not support the needs of the market participants. Thus, the first trend considers establishment of Cloud markets and generation of Service Level Agreements between Cloud market participants. Mega scale and heterogeneous Cloud infrastructure needs reliable Cloud resource management considering large data transfers, advance resource reservation and sophisticated autonomic management of resources representing the second trend we report in this special issue. On the one hand, Cloud computing has a huge potential to revolutionize IT infrastructure by providing novel business models. On the other hand, due to virtualization overheads and mega-scale
infrastructure there is potential for energy waste. The third trend we focus on in this special issue is (energy) efficient usage of resources & solutions for green Clouds. The fourth topic we cover in this special issue deals with Cloud programming models and application of traditional Cloud programming models (e.g., MapReduce) to various application areas, e.g., scientific computing. We will discuss how papers, selected for this special issue, address these four key topics.