ElasticHosts, has announced the launch of its new Elastic Containers; the first cloud servers to be billed based purely on consumption, rather than capacity, delivering substantial cost savings. ElasticHosts’ breakthrough auto-scaling container technology elastically expands and contracts to meet customer demands, entirely eliminating the need for manual provisioning. Elastic Containers are available to all Linux users from ElasticHosts’ global datacentres, backed by Solid State Drive (SSD) storage for added performance. Elastic Containers require no additional software or server configuration; customers simply sign up for the service and capacity is continuously available.
This revolutionary technology promises to disrupt the cloud market by offering:
- The industry’s first and only usage-based billing system: Traditional capacity-based IaaS billing is focused on provisioning capacity in blocks; yet concerns over performance and availability force companies to pay for a buffer of excess space that they are not actually using. By billing for actual usage, rather than available capacity, customers can run their servers with space continuously available for immediate scaling at no additional cost; they only pay for what they actually use, right down to the MB
- Auto-scaling for continuous high performance availability: The cost of a website or application failure can run into the millions of pounds; therefore servers need to be running with sufficient capacity at all times. By using Elastic Containers, companies can now handle all their usage peaks and troughs effortlessly, automatically scaling each container up to 64GB RAM. This provides peace of mind that capacity will be instantly available when needed, ensuring continuity of service without downtime
- Self-managing infrastructure: Currently, aside from deploying complex software to automate the process, companies are forced to provision and adjust capacity manually, which can be costly, time consuming and inaccurate. ElasticHosts’ auto-scaling, elastic infrastructure expands and contracts automatically, completely removing the need for manual management or provisioning; companies can simply turn on the service and forget about it.
Richard Davies, CEO and Co-Founder of ElasticHosts, comments: "We've analysed hundreds of servers from some of our largest customers and noticed two major differences: firstly, a server running a typical workload will see 50% cost saving versus other major IaaS clouds, since typically less than 50% of total capacity is used through a full weekly cycle. Secondly, a server which frequently runs below its peak capacity, either due to idle periods or because it only occasionally needs to handle a large load, can save 75% or more. To help customers take full advantage of these savings, we are billing in 15 minute intervals based on usage, as opposed to the common industry practice of hourly billing based on available capacity."
Elastic Containers represent the next generation of cloud server technology. Recent advances in the Linux kernel have enabled ElasticHosts to bring its new elastic auto-scaling, next-generation Elastic Containers to the masses. Aside from disrupting the cloud market, Elastic Containers will also impact the load balancer and disaster recovery markets:
- Eliminate load balancers: To scale, but avoid paying for unused capacity, companies currently deploy load balanced clusters and add and remove cloud servers from these according to demand. With ElasticHosts’ next-generation Elastic Containers this crude and imprecise block-based approach can be avoided, as all peaks and troughs in demand are handled within the container. By billing on usage, rather than capacity, immediate and automatic scaling up and down is always possible at no extra cost and with no additional software or hardware – such as load balancers.
- Reduce disaster recovery costs: Current disaster recovery solutions are very expensive, with companies replicating 50-100% of their servers as ‘hot spares’ and constantly provisioning them at full capacity. This means they are effectively paying for capacity twice. Elastic Containers can strip out 80% or more of these costs, as a fully-configured version of the primary server – commonly known as a ‘hot spare’ – can be running continuously. This version is ready for action if needed, but runs at a minimal cost, since actual usage is very low on the idle ‘hot spare’.
Davies concludes: “We have been building towards this elastic vision for six years and now the technology has caught up to enable it. We were one of the first European cloud infrastructure companies in 2008, first to use the Linux KVM hypervisor, first to offer free choice of server sizing and first to offer SSD at all instance sizes. Now our breakthrough next-generation Elastic Containers are the first and only cloud servers that can provide truly elastic, intelligent auto-scaling. Companies no longer have to sacrifice performance to reduce costs; they can have their cake and eat it too; the future of cloud is here.”