RightScale: More than 3 million servers launched

One-Size-Fits-All Myth Panel

RightScale, which gives companies a good look into the innards of their cloud computing workloads, just surpassed the 3-million-server mark.

RightScale’s cloud management platform launched in 2007. It took more than two years (27 months) to get to the million-server milestone, one more year to reach two million, and then half that time to breach three million milestone, said Michael Crandell, CEO of the Santa Barbara, Calif.-based company.

Most of the workloads that RightScale manages run in the Amazon Web Services’ cloud, but RightScale’s automated management tools also work with RackSpace and other clouds. This provides customers with a single management view even if their workloads run in multiple clouds or multiple types of clouds. RightScale says it can manage a mix of private and public cloud infrastructure from that proverbial “one pane of glass.”

Crandell is counting on that cloud agnosticism to keep RightScale robust even as Amazon and other cloud IaaS providers add their own management tools and dashboards. As he explained:

We bridge Amazon and RackSpace—that’s a huge differentiator. Amazon will never do that. We provide workload portability level that none of the startups are doing. We also do Amazon plus private clouds and internal IT. I want to manage all that.

RightScale has also proven valuable managing hybrid cloud infrastructures, such as Zynga’s vaunted Z Cloud. Zynga uses RightScale to manage AWS-based public cloud resources and Cloud.com (now part of Citrix) private cloud infrastructure from a single interface using standard configurations.

RightScale competes with startups like enStratus, none of which can claim the scale of adoption represented by, say, three million servers. It also contends with built-from-scratch management systems.

Crandell said RightScale is exploiting its first-mover advantage. “We’re have the most mature product and the broadest offering. Three million servers? No one else has that. We got involved with the big early adopters and run the biggest production shops in the cloud,” he said

The sheer pace of RightScale adoption, with near-exponential growth of servers under management, gives some indication of how fast cloud deployments are growing, he added.

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