An anonymous reader writes "IBM this morning announced a deal to acquire the Dallas based hosting company Softlayer, the largest privately held cloud computing provider in the world. Formerly known as The Planet, they have a dark past and hopefully a bright future. Interesting that ISS and Softlayer will now be under the same roof. 'IBM will integrate SoftLayer’s public-cloud services with its own IBM SmartCloud portfolio. In theory, that will allow IBM to more speedily deliver a combination of private, public and hybridized cloud platforms to business clients. CloudLayer features include the ability to deploy virtual cloud servers (with processors 2.0GHz or faster), a content-delivery network with scalability and security, an object-storage platform based on OpenStack Object Storage, and private-cloud solutions.'"