We are a “Gated Community Cloud”
#in | As most of you know, the cloud is segmented into a couple of different categories. There is public cloud, which I define as your Amazon type services; anyone can pull up a portal, provision a server and pay by the hour. These types of clouds are the least expensive, are highly scalable, but are the highest risk clouds. You don’t know who is managing your data, or where it even is for that matter, and it can be difficult to get services that fit your needs exactly. Then there are private cloud solutions where service providers setup infrastructure that is completely isolated on a per customer basis. With private clouds, you can get precisely what you want, where you want, but you pay dearly. This article from Cloud Tweaks goes further and describes a hybrid cloud comprised of both private and public cloud structure.
However, I don’t think any of those describe us. By currently accepted definition, our offer is a public cloud offering, except that not just anyone can sign up. I have a real problem with public cloud offerings. My main beefs are not knowing where the data resides and who is actually managing it. In Canada, many businesses have a desire or a real need to keep data soverign. There are fears about having data leave the country and be susceptible to other countries laws. Also, it sure is nice to be able to clearly identify every person who has had their hands on your data and infrastructure. That’s what our cloud is all about.
We carefully looked at all the services our clients needed, and took special steps to make sure everything could be stored and processed within Canada. That meant changing things like our antispam process. Previously, all our customers emails were re-routed through servers in the USA for antispam processing. That’s not good! So, we implemented antispam inside our data centers in Ontario. Same with off-site backup. What good is it to off-site your data when you can’t put your hands on it when you need it? We moved off-site backup for our clients in house to get the best of both worlds. We did the same for every other service we offer. All our services run on equipment completely under our control, in facilities that only we can access.
Yet we are still small enough to be a boutique provider, and we only take on clients for whom we are providing managed services for both their servers and the equipment in their offices. We manage all of their technology – end to end. Because of this, I think of us as more a “Gated Community Cloud”. It’s the type of cloud you can’t just sign up for online, yet offers similar scalability to public cloud offerings.
Small and medium sized companies who are looking to make a move to the cloud should look at solutions like ours. I have a few different business case tools that help illustrate the cost and benefits of our cloud solution, and would be very interested in speaking with you. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.