ElasticHosts

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ElasticHosts
Type Private company
Industry Cloud computing
Founded 2008 (2008)
Headquarters London, UK
Key people Richard Davies, CEO
Website www.elastichosts.com

ElasticHosts is a computer service provider based in London, UK. It was founded in March 2008 (2008-03),[1][2] and provides cloud computing service, provided from nine data centres;[3][4] in the United Kingdom (two sites), Netherlands, United States (three sites), Canada, Hong Kong and Australia.

Company[edit]

ElasticHosts is privately held and competes with other public cloud-infrastructure providers such as Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud and Rackspace Cloud.[5][6] According to CEO Richard Davies, the company aims to provide servers that are set up as similar as possible to how one would provision dedicated hosting, with the exception that the customer can self-serve at any time.[7]

ElasticHosts' EU hosting data centres are in the UK and not Ireland. It is the first public [8] cloud service built on Linux Kernel-based Virtual Machine (rather than Xen), and it has an API that has been given a good review from a REST perspective.[9] It charges for resources (CPU, memory, disk and network) as separate entities, allowing customers to build virtual machines with widely different characteristics instead of simply categorized ones, such as small, medium and large instances.[10]

ElasticHosts (and therefore licensees) are supported directly by BoxGrinder included in Fedora 15 as of May 2011.[11][12][13]

Services[edit]

  • Cloud Servers are virtualized on-demand servers, designed to behave like physical servers. Cloud Servers can be managed via their web control panel or API.
  • Containers
  • Managed Cloud Servers take care of the set up and management of servers. Management is offered by a partner company called Cloudways.
  • Cloud Websites provide redundant, scalable hosting for websites. This is offered by partner company Hybrid Sites.
  • Reseller and referrer programs offered by Elastichosts, include one called White-Label. The White-Label Reseller Program allows companies to rebrand Elastichosts cloud hosting platform and resell it.
  • Elasticstack is the underlying software to provide cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS).[14] This is available as a licensed product,[15] and several other companies around the world use the same infrastructure, licensed from ElasticHosts Ltd, to provide their own branded IaaS cloud to their customers.

ElasticHosts Cloud Servers are available from nine data centres; San Jose, Los Angeles, San Antonio, Maidenhead (UK), Portsmouth (UK), Amsterdam, Toronto, Hong Kong and Sydney.

Storage[edit]

ElasticHosts only has persistent storage, based on local host store. However, in 2012 it announced solid-state drives (SSD) for all instance sizes.[16] It does not use a storage area network, but instead has directly-attached RAID arrays, with iSCSI interconnects between hosts.[citation needed] In 2011 the CEO predicted a greater demand for storage.[17]

Elastic IP addresses[edit]

ElasticHosts has two types of IPv4 addresses - static and dynamic. Both are allocated from the same pools of addresses, but static addresses are kept by the account, and can be allocated to any account's server at any time. Dynamic ones are randomly allocated for any server that has not been specifically allocated a static IP address. These are not guaranteed to remain the same, though remain for the lifespan of the instance. A shutdown of the virtual machine may or may not reallocate the IP address. ElasticHosts does not lock a static IP to a server instance - they can be reallocated from the control panel. Reverse DNS is managed by the customer from the control panel.[18]

Containers[edit]

Elastichosts announced on 14 April 2014 that in addition to maintaining their traditional coud VM business, they were releasing an alternate type of server, based on linux running within containers. This implementation, similar to chroot or BSD jails uses the more advanced Linux kernel Control Groups feature, which the company deemed mature enough to use as the basis for a new type of cloud server.[19] Claiming this as a world first in terms of virtualization, the company currently offers versions of Debian, Ubuntu and Centos - though because of the nature of the containers, all run with the host's Linux kernel. Containers in and of themselves are not a new technology, with the cgroups features first begun being added to the Linux kernel in 2007; and other companies such as Docker Inc. producing software that uses them to virtualize applications; this is claimed as the first time an IaaS provider has used the technology for full operating system use.

Various press articles focused on the newly released pay as you go billing option, whereby the container can optionally be billed for actual usage, as opposed to some fixed instance size, in 15 minute increments; where the common industry standard is 1 hour time blocks for cloud server rentals.[20][21] In particular the CEO's claim that customers could save up to 50% on traditional costs using the service.[22] Some analysts expressed confidence that container based systems had to be the future for cloud providers; "Given the fiercely competitive nature of cloud pricing these days, it’s hard to see how containers won’t become a dominant mechanism for delivering cloud services." [23] though others wondered whether this would actually pull customers from the dominating players in the market - Owen Rogers, senior analyst for digital economics at 451 Research, noted that though the “interesting and unique” model did give Elastichosts an advantage, with the "... rest of the market ... still based on virtual machines, and I can¹t see this changing overnight”; but wondered whether "... consumers really care about ElasticHosts’ more detailed – and arguably fairer – method of pricing, when its bigger competitors are slashing prices" [24]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/05/03/elastichosts_managed_services_cloud/
  2. ^ http://www.elastichosts.com/blog/2008/03/19/foundation-of-elastichosts/
  3. ^ http://www.elastichosts.com/cloud-hosting/data-centres
  4. ^ http://www.itworldcanada.com/news/u-k-s-elastichosts-opens-cloud-data-centre-in-toronto/144690
  5. ^ ElasticHosts launches UK cloud service
  6. ^ Elastichosts targets SMEs with flexible cloud service
  7. ^ Introductory Statement at CloudCamp unconference, London, October 5, 2011
  8. ^ Elastichosts Launches first KVM-based Cloud Service
  9. ^ Experiences of Interoperability across Cloud Infrastructures using OpenNebula
  10. ^ Why Elastichosts cloud computing beats Amazon EC2
  11. ^ http://boxgrinder.org/blog/2011/04/19/support-for-new-clouds-is-coming/
  12. ^ http://boxgrinder.org/tutorials/boxgrinder-build-plugins/#ElasticHosts_Delivery_Plugin
  13. ^ BoxGrinder adds ElasticHosts support
  14. ^ ElasticStack Cloud Platform
  15. ^ http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/07/28/elasticstack_2_cloud/
  16. ^ "ElasticHosts Offers High-Performance SSD Cloud Hosting To All Customers, Refreshes User Interface". Press release (ElasticHosts). 5 September 2012. Retrieved 27 August 2013. 
  17. ^ Simon Quicke (13 October 2011). Data centre spending heading back to pre-recession levels "Data centre spending heading back to pre-recession levels". MicroScope. Retrieved 27 August 2013. 
  18. ^ How Do I set Reverse DNS?
  19. ^ Elastichosts Blog
  20. ^ Elastichosts Debuts New Pricing Model
  21. ^ Elastichosts Linux Container Virtualization Allows us to beat AWS on Price
  22. ^ Yahoo Finance
  23. ^ Mike Vizard
  24. ^ "Computer Weekly". UK cloud pioneer scores world first with true utility pricing.

External links[edit]