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Cloud - be skeptical

I like using virtual servers. I often find myself wanting PCI compliant virtual servers but that's just not going to happen unless I own the hardware. But in the meantime the big boys have me covered. Although the next time I speak to my PCI auditor I have to ask if there is a way to get PCI certified on virtual servers... anyway...

I'm always looking for a bargain... recently I was schooled that Amazon's EC2 was less expensive than RackSpace's virtual server. I had to see it for myself and he was correct. It was not much but enough. Of course if I had automated migration or installation scripts that would be one thing (no chef or puppet here). But the savings was not going to offset my time and then the risk of failure. But it was interesting.

This morning I had some StackOverflow page up and there was an advert for MediaTemple. I've never used them but I have looked at their service. In the past they offered shared servers... where your app coexisted with others in the same space. (very un-PCI friendly). And some time later they started to virtualize.

(mt) posted this on their landing page:
Virtualization on a Diet
Built on Virtuozzo 4 from Parallels. Lightweight virtualization technology, with less system overhead than Xen servers.

For some reason they seem to think that this is a selling point for me and I think they have it all wrong. This is how they would justify Xen internally and not externally. And it certainly does not make them smarter...

The way I read this:
we wanted to achieve greater VM instance concentration per physical node compared to the competition

Which does not help justify their premium!


  1. Greetings from (mt)! We really do appreciate the feedback on this. I'm curious about how you think we could better justify Xen externally to make it more appealing. We're always open to making changes and providing a better customer experience. I'll be keeping an eye out for your response. Also, feel free to contact us via Twitter if you have any questions.

  2. Thank you for taking the time to reply. Xen is quality product. So is the competition.

    Your investors are probably interested in how many tenant instances you get per 1U and still remain competitive but I think your clients are more concerned on the benchmarks or more precisely average instructions per cycle or something like that.

    PS: My article was intended to motivate people to be skeptical (without actually saying root cause analysis). That I used this one paragraph from your material is only coincidence. I believe (mt) to be a quality company with a reputable product. But to my knowledge it's always been priced higher than the competition.


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