CloudDatacentre

NaviSite Launches Enterprise-Class Cloud Platform

Jeffrey Burt is a senior editor for eWEEK and contributor to TechWeekEurope

NaviSite has unveiled an alternative to public cloud offerings such as Amazon’s EC2, by launching its own enterprise-class cloud offering, dubbed NaviCloud

Hosting company NaviSite has launched a cloud service offering for businesses that are seeking a more enterprise-level option, than the public cloud offerings from the likes of Amazon’s EC2 environment.

So said NaviSite CTO Denis Martin in an interview. The service is being called the NaviCloud Managed Cloud Services offering, and will utilise the latest technologies from Cisco Systems, IBM, Intel and VMware to create a highly scalable and on-demand managed cloud computing platform for enterprises.

Specifically, NaviCloud Managed Cloud Services will use third party technologies such as Cisco’s UCS (Unified Computing System), Intel’s Xeon 5500 Series “Nehalem EP” processors and VMware’s vSphere 4 virtualisation platform.

It also includes IBM’s XIV Storage System open disk storage product.

NaviCloud will run over three of NaviSite’s data centres, which will give its users a service that has built-in disaster recovery.

The NaviCloud platform is designed to give businesses a more enterprise-level cloud option than those offered by the likes of Amazon, with its EC2 (Elastic Compute Cloud) environment, said Martin, speaking at the Oracle OpenWorld show in San Francisco.

For example, a key difference, Martin said, is that with an environment like Amazon EC2, users essentially need only a credit card and can jump on and off as desired. However, with NaviCloud, NaviSite is looking for a base commitment from customers of 100GHz and 80GB of RAM, or about 10 Hewlett-Packard 2x dual-socket ProLiant DL380s with 8GB of RAM each, he said.

NaviCloud gives businesses a highly-virtualised enterprise-level cloud environment, Martin said. The products from Cisco and VMware, coupled with the latest generation Intel quad-core Xeons are linked via 40 Gigabit Ethernet and Fibre Channel. Because it runs over multiple data centres (NaviSite brought direct link Fiber Gigabit Ethernet capacity between the data centres), NaviCloud also gives businesses built-in disaster recovery, he said.

NaviSite runs 16 data centres worldwide, but only three (including one in England) will be used initially for the NaviCloud services offering, Martin said. A fourth one may be incorporated into NaviCloud, but the rest of the company’s data centres will be used to run its current hosting business.

NaviSite also is working with VMware to create the capability of moving virtual machines between the data centres, Martin said.

Customers can buy compute, memory and storage resources from the clouds pool of offerings and can run them either in a self-managed or fully managed mode. If businesses opt for self-service, they can create and configure virtual machines with a choice of operating systems – including Windows and Linux – and applications.