CloudSigma

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CLOUDSIGMA AG (dba CloudSigma) is an Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) company based in Zurich, Switzerland. The company also has offices in Sofia, Bulgaria. It hosts its servers from the Interxion data centre in Glattbrugg near Zurich which is also the location of its main global headquarters.

CloudSigma provides cloud servers on a utility computing basis adopting a pure Infrastructure-as-a-Service approach with open networking and an open software later. Their cloud servers are managed via its web based provisioning portal or via API.

Business Model

CloudSigma's stated aim is to provide a pure IaaS product initially targeting the continental European market. Its product aims to provide utility computing without the software, networking or price restrictions of many of its competitors currently. To this end CloudSigma offers unbundled resources and prices based on resource units in a manner disruptive to traditional web hosting business models.

CloudSigma's product employs a combination of API access and a browser based GUI web console. The company sells four products, CPU, RAM, data storage and data transfer with prices all based on per unit per hour pricing. The company also employs a dynamic on-demand pricing platform that varies the price of these metrics in relation to the utilisation rate of their cloud. Development of new product ideas and platform features is undertaken by its in-house technical team based in Sofia, Bulgaria .

Technological platform

Virtualisation on the CloudSigma platform is built on the Linux KVM hypervisor, an advanced virtualisation platform that uses hardware extensions for virtualisation. Built into mainline Linux, forming part of the mainstream open source Linux Kernel community, KVM continues to mature within the general virtualisation landscape. Within the public Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) space, as of August 2010, CloudSigma along with ElasticHosts are the only two providers currently utilising the KVM hypervisor.

Unique Technologies

CloudSigma has gained attention within the cloud computing space for deploying a number of new technologies within their platform developed in-house and often unavailable outside of their platform.

The company offer standard subscription pricing but also have an on-demand burst pricing mechanism based on the utilisation of their cloud. Prices are adjusted every five minutes based on the latest cloud utilisation according to a fixed matrix of 20 price levels for CPU, RAM and data transfer. The prices are posted on the company website and via an RSS feed. Customers subscribing to the RSS feed use it to automate API scripts in order to execute computing jobs according to price tolerances that the user sets.

In late July 2010 the company announced the deployment of the first Physical-to-Virtual FTP gateway allowing raw ISO format drive images to be transferred via FTP over SSL to and from user accounts within their cloud. By giving users of the service direct access to drive images the product aims to address the problems of vendor and data lock-in, one of the leading concerns voiced among user of cloud computing services.

In August 2010 the company announced the release of the first in-browser VNC client. By taking advantage of newly incorporated technologies in web browsers such as Google Chrome like HTML5 and WebSockets, the company was able to create a VNC solution entirely within the browser without the need for external software libraries or other technologies such as Java. Apart from the added convenience, this feature allows users behind corporate firewalls to connect via VNC using the HTTPS port and without the need for sufficient permissions to install dedicated VNC client software.

Greener Computing

The company has been vocal in the area of environmental responsibility within the industry. The increasing impact of server and data centre operations on global greenhouse gas emissions was highlighted by Greenpeace in early 2010. In June 2010 announced that the company was adopting a carbon neutral policy for its entire operations with a three step approach to environment impact of 'Eliminate, Mitigate, Offset'. The company offers the only certified carbon neutral cloud servers for which it has attracted significant attention, particularly within Europe.

Recent news

Patrick Baillie is active in the European cloud computing space with regards to debates on regulation and standards development of IaaS having presented to the European Commission on current technological challenges and the Cloud Suisse Association

CloudSigma continue to speak at industry gatherings and will be presenting on 'Hybrid Clouds' at the Cloud Expo Live 2010 in September 2010.

See also

  • Cloud infrastructure
  • Cloud computing
  • Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud
  • Rackspace Cloud

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article CloudSigma,
which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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