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Will Rackspace Partnership Save FathomDB?

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Rackspace (s rax) said today that it would offer a database in the cloud through a partnership with FathomDB, a company that provides a relational database as a service. The move will add to Rackspace’s portfolio of enterprise-level offerings and follows on a similar announcement in late October when Amazon (s amzn) announced its own cloud-based relational database service.

It may also help FathomDB, a Y Combinator startup that hosts its database-as-a-service offering on Amazon’s cloud, stay alive and compete against that company’s rival service. Signing up with Rackspace gives it a protector (and one that likes to buy innovative startups), and also adds some competition to the emerging database-in-the-cloud market. Microsoft (s msft) has one coming on Azure as well.

Competition and big service providers that enterprise buyers can trust are essential. However, when it comes to putting a database in the cloud, while the ability to scale is a benefit, of equal importance in some cases will be the speed at which that database in the cloud can talk to the web servers requesting the data.

Image courtesy of Tim Morgan on Flickr.

4 Responses to “Will Rackspace Partnership Save FathomDB?”

  1. I’m the founder of FathomDB. Rumors of our death were greatly exaggerated!

    Amazon’s RDS announcement has actually been great for us; Amazon have essentially put their marketing budget behind relational databases as a service, and FathomDB compares well to RDS – we have an easy to use GUI, great analytics and great customer support. We’re delighted to be bringing our service to the Rackspace cloud – our values align really well with Rackspace’s (e.g. Fanatical Support). We don’t believe enterprise customers want to be locked in to Amazon’s cloud, and Rackspace has a great offering for customers that have more enterprise-orientated demands: real support, dedicated hosting from the same company, a standards-based approach as opposed to Amazon’s not-invented-here syndrome. These are pre-requisites for the cloud ‘growing up’, and even the smallest company should be looking for these features. This is why we’re so excited about the combination of FathomDB and the Rackspace cloud.

    • I’m excited too, and I think it’s a good thing for FathomDB, Rackspace and folks buying cloud services in general because it adds choice. I was more concerned about your future survival rather than doubting your current viability, but I could have phrased that better. Thanks for saying hello!

  2. Your last sentence does a great job of summarizing why this partner is so valuable to our customers.

    Honestly, the best thing that could happen to FathomDB is the adoption of relational databases-as-a-service. They will help scale databases such as MySQL and keep them around in the future. Think of it as a framework of sorts like Ruby on Rails. What is the advantage of this service over Amazon RDS? No lock-in into one particular cloud.

    Rackspace is committed to helping partners such as FathomDB as we see them as starting blocks for new tools our customers can use to make bigger, badder, and more efficient apps. FathomDB does not focus on scaling–it focuses on eliminating the everyday drudge work of running a database, allowing you to focus on scaling.