Summary:

Cloud 66 has come up with an interface for running and configuring Ruby on Rails applications on a few public clouds. It applies the best of Platform as a Service to other clouds.

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photo: Jason Alden

While Puppet, Chef and other configuration-management tools have caught on with developers and operations people to ensure software updates run smoothly, Cloud 66 believes not every application needs complicated configurations during deployment in public clouds. The startup has developed an easy way to launch and configure Ruby on Rails applications, abstracting away the hard work, in a way that’s similar to a Platform as a Service (PaaS).

In providing these capabilities, the year-old London-based Cloud 66 is banking on the rise of the multi-cloud era, where it’s less about having a go-to cloud and more about getting peak performance.

Co-founder and CEO Khash Sajadi (pictured above, on right) has extensive experience getting the most out of hardware and software at multiple banks. At Lehman Brothers, he waited four months for servers to arrive and get racked and fitted with operating systems before he could use them. No wonder he likes cloud computing. And at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, he assembled a team to build and run a critical application — the pricing of 40 million contracts in seven minutes at the close of the London market before the data got passed on for risk assessment.

Sajadi has also worked in a few startups, including social search engine Sentimnt and remote-workforce scheduling tool Onyaka. Those experiences, too, are proving useful as he and co-founder and CTO Vic van Gool develop Cloud 66.

The company has gone through Telefónica accelerator Wayra and has taken angel investments from GigaOM Research analyst Ben Kepes; Techstars managing director Jason Seats, formerly of Rackspace; and Afshin Khosrowshahi. It has seven employees and claims Adobe and Telefónica Europe plc as users.

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So what does Cloud 66 do? It analyzes the code a developer wants to run once it’s living on GitHub and deploys it on any of the six Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) clouds: Amazon Web Services, Digital Ocean, Joyent, Linode, Rackspace and Telefónica.

Cloud 66 determines what core elements are part of the application — say, a MySQL database — and sets up cloud instances that the application will require. Users can tell Cloud 66 how to expand parts of the application and add resources such as load balancing with a few clicks. They can manage firewall configurations, inspect log files and see security issues hitting servers as they arise.

It can also facilitate the movement of applications from one cloud to another, as well as monitor disk, CPU and memory usage. Other companies can do that, but the feature is conveniently located next to other parts of the service.

As a startup, Cloud 66 can’t and probably shouldn’t try to be everything to everyone. Still, adding support for additional frameworks and clouds will help the company become a go-to service for deployments across multiple clouds.

That vision for a simple multi-cloud reality is what makes Cloud 66 a viable contender in the LaunchPad competition at our Structure:Europe conference in London on Sept. 18-19.

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