I’ve posted video demos for Cloud Servers and Cloud Files from The Rackspace Cloud, now lets take a look at Cloud Sites, which is the flagship cloud platform from Rackspace.
Cloud Sites is a fully managed platform-as-a-service hosting architecture which makes it unbelievably easy to provision new web sites and web applications on enterprise grade hosting infrastructure. Because the entire infrastructure is managed by the Rackspace Cloud team up to your application/code there are some limitations in the level of access that you have to the environment and the amount of customization that you can achieve, but the benefits of the platform FAR outweigh any inconvenience caused by this. Essentially, my general rule is that if what you are looking to host will work in the Cloud Sites environment, RUN IT ON CLOUD SITES.
No platform offers greater levels of scalability and redundancy out of the box. From the moment you provision a site/app onto Cloud sites it is load-balanced across multiple physical web servers and specialized database clusters as well. All centrally managed with the best hosting control panel in the industry, business class email from Mailtrust (a sister company), and direct file-system access via FTP/SFTP. Cloud Sites can also easily be used in conjunction with Cloud Files and Cloud Servers.
I posted some video demos showing the functionality of the control panel as well as performing some basis tasks within the platform (FTP, database management, etc).
Adding A New Site
Creating & Managing Databases
A few days ago I posted a video demo/tutorial showing how to get started with Rackspace Cloud Files & the Limelight CDN component to that platform. I have another tutorial complete showing off the new Cloud Servers platform and how easy and quick you can deploy new virtual dedicated server instances and manage those servers. This is an amazing platform with significant advantages to running in a traditional dedicated environment and it also has many benefits in comparison to other clouds in terms of usability, reliability and cost. More information here: www.rackspacecloud.com
Strong web site performance, reliability, and uptime – these are all traits you would expect from an enterprise-class Cloud hosting platform, right? That is exactly how I feel now – and exactly what I expected almost three years ago when I started looking at the very early cloud hosting platforms of the time.
My name is Chad and today I am a Mosso employee. Long before I joined the Mosso team, however, I enjoyed (sometimes) hosting many of my own web sites and those of friends, colleagues, family, etc. Back in late 2006 I was looking for a better platform for the sites I hosted. I was tired of trying to manage my own solution, and I was frustrated with the downtime and poor support of all the VPS providers I had used over the years. Cloud hosting was a very new concept and, in fact, I don’t think it was even referred to as “cloud” just yet, but there were two main providers in this space at that time: Mosso & Media Temple. Like many, I was concerned about the initial concepts but very intrigued with the technology so I splurged and purchased hosting accounts both with Mosso and with the Media Temple Grid platform. I decided to do some testing on two basic fronts: response time & uptime. As you may have figured by now, one platform excelled in comparison, and I was so intrigued that I ended up coming to work for Mosso!
So now, in early 2009, I thought, “Why not duplicate those same tests and see what the results would be?” And that is exactly what I did. I set up identical static web sites serving a 100KB image and identical dynamic sites, a vanilla WordPress 2.7.1 install on both platforms (Cloud Sites from Mosso and Grid-Service from Media Temple). Next I decided to leverage Pingdom for all the testing, as they have a wide variety of testing locations around the world. These tests for uptime and response time were performed via a full HTTP check (not ping) and occurred in 1 minute and 5 minute intervals on different copies of the static and dynamic sites. I set the test to run during the middle of a typical business week and collected roughly 72 hours of data.
The results were very impressive. Uptime percentages for Mosso Cloud Sites were a solid 100% compared to about 99.0% on average with Media Temple GS, and downtime stuck solid to zero seconds, while Media Temple was down 1-5 times across the different test sites resulting in almost 30 minutes of downtime on average per site. Average response times for Mosso Cloud Sites were at least half of that of MT GS, with Cloud Sites sometimes operating almost as much as five times faster!
This test is easy to duplicate if you would like to try it firsthand. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Please see the results below and you can see the direct Pingdom reports here: http://www.pingdom.com/reports/ndv2m2bh6fnw/