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GoGrid Launches Cloud Storage v0.7 & On-Hovers

December 11th, 2008 by - 13,100 views

Many of you have been asking about when the next release of GoGrid will be and what new features it will have. Trust me, we have been just dying to get this exciting release out, so much so that I tried to extract some details from the development team back in September. Well that day has arrived and you can now unwrap your holiday gift early!

Some highlights of what is included in this release:

Cloud Storage v0.7

gogrid_onhover_fulldash2

GoGrid Cloud Storage is an instantly scalable and reliable file-level storage service for Windows and Linux servers running in the GoGrid Cloud. If you want to place it within the Cloud Pyramid, it would be considered a Cloud Extender which means that it works in conjunction with another Cloud Service (specifically, GoGrid Server Clouds):

New_Cloud_Pyramid

GoGrid Windows & Linux cloud servers are able to mount GoGrid Cloud Storage using a secure private network and common transfer protocols such as SCP, FTP, SAMBA/CIFS and RSYNC to move data back and forth from Cloud Storage. The Cloud Storage service is dynamically scalable and charged on a pay-as-you-use basis.

Pricing is as follows:

  • Initial 10 GB Cloud Storage is FREE
  • Additional storage is $0.15/GB per month. For example, if you use an additional 100 GB’s of storage, the cost would be $15/month, giving you 110 GB of storage.
  • Zero set-up fee
  • Zero long-term commitment
  • You are billed for your peak usage during any particular month. For example if you spike to 110 GB during a month and then scale back to 60 GB, you are charged for the peak of 100GB (or $15)
  • Since Cloud Storage is attached to your private network, there is no charge for data transfer back and forth between is and your GoGrid Cloud Servers

Features include:

  • 10 GB FREE Cloud Storage
  • FREE data transfer to and from your GoGrid Cloud servers and GoGrid Cloud Storage
  • Can be used as a “file level backup” (note: there are no tools to automate this backup; you must provide your own solution)
  • Servers access Cloud Storage using transfer protocols like SCP, FTP, SAMBA/CIFS and RSYNC
  • GoGrid Windows and Linux Cloud servers can share the same storage quota
  • On-the-fly provisioning which means instant scalability
  • Storage utilization graphs available within the GoGrid UI (see screenshots in the section below)

Some Important Things To Know:

  • Cloud Storage cannot be deleted via the user interface (the way you can with other GoGrid objects). In order to not incur Cloud Storage charges, you must bring your storage usage below the 10 GB threshold.
  • Setting up GoGrid Cloud Storage is a 3-step process: 1) Create within the GoGrid web portal, 2) Connect each of your servers to your Private Network and 3) Mount the storage on each of your Cloud Servers
  • With the 0.7 release, you cannot use the API to upload/download using web services (PUTS, GETS, LIST, Deletes). You will be able to do this in the 1.0 release coming soon.
  • You can only create one GoGrid Cloud Storage device per GoGrid Account
  • Username and Password are automatically created for accessing your Cloud Storage allotment and is presented in the Passwords section of the GoGrid portal. Note: username and password cannot be changed or deleted
  • You cannot RDC or SSH directly into Cloud Storage
  • Your GoGrid Storage Quota will automatically adjust in 100 GB blocks. When you hit an 80% utilization on your current quota, your account will automatically increase by 100 GB. You are, however, only billed for what you actively use within your Storage.
  • Cloud Storage is in addition to the persistent storage already available on each GoGrid Cloud Server

GoGrid_add_cloud_storage

How-To documentation is available on the GoGrid Wiki. Specifically:

New On-hover Implementation

In order to increase the usability of GoGrid’s Award Winning web portal, we have added some “eye candy” that actually provides some useful information. What is an “on-hover?” Essentially, if you hold your mouse over any of the GoGrid objects within the GoGrid web portal, you will see additional details display automatically.

Pictures are worth 1,000 words so:

gogrid_onhover_storage

Cloud Storage shows the hostname of your storage as well as your Quota. As you use more, the status will graphically change and reflect the percentage used.

gogrid_onhover_server gogrid_onhover_server2

Cloud Server on-hovers show the name you gave it, the description, how much RAM is allocated, the base image used, the contents of the server image template and the IP address assigned to it.

gogrid_onhover_loadbalancer

The Load Balancer on-hover shows the name and description of your load balancer, as well as the type of load balancing and persistence that was configured. Also, the load balancer’s Virtual IP and port and the Real IPs and ports (the IPs of the servers where the balancer is directing traffic) are displayed. This makes for easy and quick information gathering of your load balanced infrastructure.

Those are two pretty great features! Also, look to the next coming days for a NEW Customer Wiki, UPDATED GoGrid Wiki and NEW User Forums! (I will post details on this once it is live and ready to use.)

What do you think? Pretty great release, no? Drop me a note!

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Michael Sheehan

Michael Sheehan, formerly the Technology Evangelist for GoGrid, is a recognized technology, social media, and cloud computing pundit and blogger who writes regularly about technology news and trends.

8 Responses to “GoGrid Launches Cloud Storage v0.7 & On-Hovers”

  1. Ryan says:

    So it’s competing directly with S3?
    Pricing structure of 15/mth for 110GB storage is attractive.

    I have some questions though. S3 doesn’t support multiple-levels of folders but can it be done on your cloud storage?

    Without API support (for now) means it can’t be used with any web app developed on gogrid clouds yet?

    Only way to get things done for now is uploading to cloud storage via FTP or Samba?

    Anyway, the service sounds attractive and hover feature is cool. Maybe if you provide a way to edit server description and name, it will be much better.

    • Michael Sheehan says:

      @Ryan,
      To answer your good questions:

      Question: So it’s competing directly with S3? Pricing structure of 15/mth for 110GB storage is attractive.
      Answer: With this release, it is not directly competing with S3. The 1.0 release will be a closer apples to apples comparison though.

      Q: I have some questions though. S3 doesn’t support multiple-levels of folders but can it be done on your cloud storage?
      A: Yes, you can create multiple directories and folders on your Cloud Storage allotment. This, by the way, is something that I don’t believe you can do with S3.

      Q: Without API support (for now) means it can’t be used with any web app developed on gogrid clouds yet?
      A: Cloud Storage can be used with any servers currently instantiated on your GoGrid Cloud. It does require some manual configuration of the routing and transfer protocols. An easy way to use Cloud Storage for web/app and database servers is to create cron jobs that run at any time intervals you choose which would utilize rsync or scp to copy any updated data over to your Cloud Storage allotment.

      Q: Only way to get things done for now is uploading to cloud storage via FTP or Samba?
      A: No, you can also use RSYNC or SCP. If you are running Windows, you can use cwrsync (with Cygwin) or WinSCP to transfer data to and from your Cloud Storage allotment. This is all documented on the GoGrid wiki.

      Q: Anyway, the service sounds attractive and hover feature is cool. Maybe if you provide a way to edit server description and name, it will be much better.
      A: That is on the product roadmap for next year.

      Thanks for your questions.
      Michael

    • Michael Sheehan says:

      @Ryan,

      Thanks for your good comments. Please find some answers below:

      Question: So it’s competing directly with S3? Pricing structure of 15/mth for 110GB storage is attractive.
      Answer: This release (v0.7) of Cloud Storage is not directly competitive with S3. The v1.0 release, however, will be much more of an apples-to-apples comparison.

      Q: I have some questions though. S3 doesn’t support multiple-levels of folders but can it be done on your cloud storage?
      A: Yes, you can create multiple directories and folders on GoGrid’s Cloud Storage allotment. This is something that S3 cannot do currently, I believe.

      Q: Without API support (for now) means it can’t be used with any web app developed on gogrid clouds yet?
      A: Cloud Storage can be used with any servers currently instantiated on your GoGrid Cloud infrastructure. It does require some manual configuration of routing and transfer protocols. An easy way to use Cloud Storage for web/app and database servers is to create cron jobs that run at any time intervals you choose which would utilize rsync or scp to copy any updated data over to your Cloud Storage allotment.

      Q: Only way to get things done for now is uploading to cloud storage via FTP or Samba?
      A: No, you can also use RSYNC or SCP. If you are running Windows, you can use cwrsync (with Cygwin) or WinSCP to transfer data to and from your Cloud Storage allotment. This is all documented on the GoGrid wiki.

      Q: Anyway, the service sounds attractive and hover feature is cool. Maybe if you provide a way to edit server description and name, it will be much better.
      A: This feature is on the roadmap for next year.

      Thanks for your questions!
      -Michael

  2. Brian says:

    Very Nice!

    Early Feedback…

    Cloud Storage
    > only issue so far was Wiki documentation – for Windows servers a Samba client isn’t required.
    > would like to know what Cloud Storage DR plan is

    On Hover
    > display internal IP if one is assigned
    > hover tends to display if you mouse over it
    > would be nice to be able to highlight/copy private storage name — makes pasting for setups on servers easier the first time.

  3. Brian says:

    last comment should have been…

    > hover tends to disappear if you mouse over it

  4. Michael,

    I think these are great improvements. Now when can we expect server image cloning/backup?

    • Michael Sheehan says:

      @Brian,
      We have another release coming in the next few weeks. It won’t have the cloning/backup however. We have some other exciting items coming in 1Q2009 as well. Stay tuned (as I know you will)!
      -Michael

  5. Morten Christensen says:

    I think the cloud storage is an excellent add-on to a cloud server. I myself have been evaluating gogrid with one win2003 server and cloud storage, which couldn’t be more userfriendly.
    I have however been missing some guides for best practices for cloud storage. My original plan was to store IIS sites and databases within the cloud storage, but the way windows utilizes a network share might be a bit different from the way it can be mounted in a linux distro (i’m not a linux guy, so correct me if im wrong) – at least, it seems that way when reading the online guides.
    Anyway, I found that a good solution for using the cloud storage was to synchronize the local files of the IIS sites and DB backup to the network share (cloud storage) with WinSCP – and since the windows guides on the GoGrid wiki is very limited I thought that I might contribute by adding a short rundown of how I do a daily backup of local files to the cloud storage.

    After downloading WinSCP, I created a .bat that I can run as a windows scheduled task.
    My command.bat contains the following to lines:
    @echo off
    winscp /console /script=script.txt

    and for my script.txt I wrote the following lines:

    option batch on
    option confirm off
    open scp://[customernumber]:[password]@[customernumber].cloud.storage.gogrid.com
    synchronize remote c:\DB Backup/DB/
    synchronize remote c:\Inetpub Backup/Inetpub/
    close
    exit

    Remember that if your password contains special charactors it should be URL encoded.
    For the synchronize command I used the ‘remote’ parameter, so changes from the local directory are applied to the remote directory (which in my case is the Backup folder).

    Here is the reference to WinSCP scripting: http://winscp.net/eng/docs/scripting

    Hope someone find it helpful ;-)

    ————-
    Another thing: It would be great to seen some kind of best practices for using the cloud servers with storage, DB and load balancer – maybe on the blog or in the wiki?

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