Microsoft and Google put RightScale on a Roll

By narayanam_jr|5th Jul 2012
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Guess who benefits when two industry giants compete with each other offering exactly the same set of services? It is RightScale! While the Cloud ecosystem is still recovering from the euphoria of witnessing Microsoft and Google launch IaaS, RightScale is busy porting their ServerTemplates to both the Public Clouds. They are in an enviable position where every new IaaS provider wants to be a part of their platform. This is not a common phenomenon that we see in the industry. RightScale saw the opportunity pretty early in the cycle and got into the game much ahead of the time and that seems to pay off now! It’s not just Microsoft and Google, even HP partnered with RightScale much before they entered into the public beta in May. RightScale now has an impressive portfolio of supported Public Clouds and Private Clouds that includes AWS, Rackspace, SoftLayer, Tata, OpenStack, CloudStack and Eucalyptus.

Contrary to the belief, moving to the Cloud doesn’t automatically bring high availability and fault tolerance. That’s proven multiple times and the recent outages of AWS are an indication of the vulnerability of the Cloud. The very first step to Cloud migration is avoiding single point of failure. While the right architecture can make your application immune to the general failures, it cannot always protect you from the outages that may occur at a fundamental level. Last week’s AWS US-EAST outage is attributed to the power failure that was caused by extreme weather conditions. The ‘Design for Failure’ philosophy that many AWS customers adopted did little in keeping the lights on. Even Netflix that is known for their high availability architecture couldn’t withstand the catastrophic Cloud failure. If your business is mission critical and you cannot afford any downtime, you shouldn’t be putting all the eggs in one basket! Your Cloud strategy must include multi-cloud deployment as the key consideration. But dealing with multiple Clouds is not trivial. If architecting for the Cloud is complex, targeting a multi-cloud deployment could be a daunting task even for the veteran architects. That’s exactly where RightScale comes in. By exposing the lowest common denominator from multiple IaaS platforms in the form of compute, storage and networking, RightScale lets you deal with the abstract building blocks that are independent of any Cloud. They give you a canvas to design your deployment that can be provisioned on any of the supported Clouds. Since you avoid the dependency on a single Cloud, it is fairly easy to move from one Cloud to another. RightScale’s architecture makes it possible to deploy and manage your application across disparate Clouds running in different geographic locations. So, RightScale is a meta-cloud or Cloud of the Clouds that boasts of an impressive clientele that includes Sony Music, Zynga, BBC and EA among others.

RightScale’s experience of working with diverse customers and leading Cloud platforms make them the preferred partner for the new entrants. Microsoft’s Windows Azure team worked very closely with RightScale to get their IaaS offerings and the APIs right. Raphael Simon, Sr. Systems Architect at RightScale wrote “Our journey in integrating Windows Azure into RightScale began a few years ago when the stateless “VM role” was introduced. We provided detailed feedback to Microsoft at that time about the roadblocks we encountered. The kickoff for the current integration was a call with the new Windows Azure IaaS team where they walked us through their proposed API to ensure we could be successful. During this call it became clear that the IaaS effort is an all-out initiative and on equal footing with the PaaS offering. In the intervening years we significantly increased our portfolio of Windows solutions on other clouds, which we were then able to port to the new Windows Azure IaaS. All this made the decision to fully support Windows Azure relatively straightforward.” RightScale customers will now be able to deploy a multi-tier LAMP application on Windows Azure VMs. Now, that’s a big deal for the customers, RightScale and of course Microsoft!

If that was Microsoft, here is Google inviting RightScale to demonstrate their integration with Google Compute Engine at last week’s Google I/O event. Core features of Google Cloud like VMs, static IP addresses, block storage, firewalls will now surface on the RightScale canvas turning Google into a managed Cloud. According to the official blog post by RightScale, Google engineers worked closely with them to make sure that GCE can be integrated with the platform. Below is a demo of RightScale integration with GCE.

 


It’s very exciting to see the Cloud space evolving rapidly creating new opportunities in the ecosystem! All hail the Cloud!

- Janakiram MSV, Chief Editor, CloudStory.in

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