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August 4, 2009

UK cloud server service opens for business

Company sells Amazon-like infrastructure as a service

By CBR Staff Writer

ElasticHosts Ltd has launched as a UK-based infrastructure-as-a-service provider with intention of winning business from small organisations wanting to use cloud services that are simpler to use than Amazon’s.

The company will sell cloud server capacity for scalable web hosting and on-demand burst computing. 

Richard Davies, CEO of ElasticHosts told us, ”We are very strongly targeted at the SME market with a system that is simple to use and exposes the true flexibility that cloud services can bring to a business.”

He explained the service has been built around the design of a nice, easy to use interface with onscreen slider menus with which server CPU, memory and disk capacities can be scaled independently and fluidly. The servers will run any PC operating system.

ElasticHosts has established data centres in two locations to the south and to the west of London, one of which is run off its own physical server infrastructure and the other run in collaboration with IT hosting provider Peer 1.

Because the cloud infrastructure is based in the UK, the services will offer guaranteed high bandwidth and low latency, Davies said. 

It also means that companies with concerns over the storage location of their data can have assurances that it falls under European jurisdiction.

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The company has been built out of an existing ISP business, and plans to offer cloud services according to two pricing plans.

One is intended for customer that want to use it as a burst compute engine to run occasion use batch jobs that demand extra capacity or for test and development purposes. 

That will be charge on a pre-pay scheme similar to that used for mobile phones. The company cites services starting at just 4p per hour on its web site.

The other subscription charge service is for businesses that want ongoing capacity to host a mail server or to run as a small web cluster, and which is pitched at a price point advertised as starting at £30 per month.

Davies said both were priced to be broadly competitive with services offered by Amazon and the likes of Rackspace.


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