Posts tagged ‘rackspace’ A Geekdom Startup That Simplifies Server Management

September 11, 2014 8:00 am


DropBox simplified online storage. GitHub simplified revision control. And, member of the Rackspace Startup Program, is looking to simplify server management.

Using the Rackspace Managed Cloud, offers its customers a simpler way to manage servers online by making it easy to execute commands on groups of servers from a beautiful web interface. The mantra inside is simplicity. empowers everybody in a company to interact with servers via an easy to use web interface; including less technical employees such as support and marketing.

“Others in the DevOps space are focused on ever increasing complexity and command line systems,” explains Justin Keller, founder of “Our approach is a beautiful web interface with no external dependencies (agents). ?”

Keller says that other solutions in the space often have a steep learning curve.

“Going with Chef or Puppet require a large time investment, and companies have to send developers off to Chef School for two weeks to learn their systems,” he says. “We don’t ask our users to go to school. They can sign up and start managing servers instantly with their existing stack and scripts.”

[vimeo 73097569 w=500 h=281] walkthrough from on Vimeo.

The genesis for came from solving a pain point at Keller’s previous startup, NodeSocket, a Platform as a Service (PaaS) for hosting node.js applications.

“ was the pivot for NodeSocket. We now have thousands of accounts created in over 80 different countries, and, by the end of 2014 our goal is to be profitable.” notes Keller.

With the poised for growth, the team takes up headquarters inside Rackspace’s Geekdom San Francisco, a collaborative workspace bringing great people together south of Market Street.

“We really enjoy the relationships with other companies in the space, since they all tend to focus on developer tools or infrastructure,” says Keller. “The office space is also conveniently located in SOMA, and offers great amenities. Finally, they host great events usually a few times a week, from Docker, to tech talks, to investor pitches.”

The Rackspace Startup Program was there to help use the Rackspace Managed Cloud to simplify server management. Drop the Startup Team a note and let us know if you need help building your startup.

Rackspace::Solve New York: How CloudMine Solves For High Mobile Performance In Regulated Environments

September 9, 2014 2:00 pm

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Mobility adds an interesting new wrinkle to the management of sensitive data, especially in highly regulated industries like healthcare. Mobility makes data portable and enables that data to travel anywhere at any time, which means ensuring the security of data accessed from mobile devices is paramount to all mobile initiatives.

At CloudMine, we provide an enterprise-grade mobile gateway that ensures the app you build will keep sensitive data behind the firewall when it needs to be kept there, and is available for consumption from mobile devices in a secure and mobile-optimized manner. Our software sits between large enterprise systems like Oracle DB and SAP and bridges that data securely to mobile devices over the public Internet. That’s increasingly important in the mobile health arena, where wireless devices are used to manage health conditions, collect health data, monitor vital signs, provide clinical decision support and access personal health information.


Mobile health data is all around us. It’s on consumer medical devices, FDA approved medial devices, apps on our smartphones and in electronic health records. Think about it: FitBit, Healthbook, MyChart, VitalScore, iHealth BP and VSee all touch mobile health information. With all these mobile initiatives comes the challenge of data security and compliance, including regulations like HIPAA and HITECH.

The CloudMine platform enables our customers in healthcare and related fields to easily develop apps that comply with strict regulations regarding personally identifiable information (PII) and electronic protected health information (ePHI). Our customers can use our suite of web services, mobile and web SDKs, and dataset integration technology to quickly and cost-efficiently build, deploy, maintain and secure applications.

We rely on the Rackspace Managed Cloud to help us design the optimal architecture for our software – it’s like having our own at scale DevOps and engineering team to do the hard work for us. The cloud alone isn’t secure enough for what we do, so we rely on a hybrid cloud deployment – a mix of bare metal dedicated servers and the cloud.

Together with Rackspace, we solve the challenges of mobility and secure data exchange for our customers.

Want to hear more about how CloudMine solves for high mobile performance in regulated environments? Marc Weil, CTO of CloudMine will present at Rackspace::Solve New York, a one-day summit where you’ll hear directly from companies like CloudMine about how they’re solving tough challenges in their businesses. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at Cipriani Wall Street.

Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York.

And stay tuned for details of the next Rackspace::Solve event in Chicago.

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Upgrading To iPhone 6? Setting Up Your Rackspace Email Is A Snap.

September 9, 2014 11:21 am


The much-anticipated iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are here! The larger display sizes, better resolution, improved camera and video capture and new features such as Touch ID, Wi-Fi calling, Apple Pay and several more look pretty enticing (As does Apple Watch!). If you’re upgrading to iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, you can setup your Rackspace Hosted Exchange email in less than two minutes and in only a few clicks – and you don’t need to know any arbitrary passwords or server names. This is extremely helpful if you’re an admin of remote employees!

Here’s a brief look on how it’s done. You can check out more about iPhone integration with Rackspace Hosted Exchange here.


Rackspace::Solve New York: How Under Armour Solves For Rapid Ecommerce Growth

September 8, 2014 2:00 pm


By Brian McManus, Senior Director of Technology, Under Armour

When Under Armour started, we had just four web servers and a database server. Back then we were called KP Sports – named after our founder and CEO Kevin Plank.

We grew. And we grew quickly. We needed infrastructure – and a partner — that supported not only our ecommerce site’s high traffic (especially during seasonal spikes or a Super Bowl commercial) but also one that was always up and could grow right alongside us.

The Under Armour/Rackspace story is built on nearly a decade of growing together. When we signed on with Rackspace, we were a small startup making and shipping shirts. Rackspace was a scrappy hosting upstart. Together, we’ve grown in our respective industries and with each other. At Under Armour we’ve doubled-down with Rackspace because of our similar paths and cultures. We have parallel stories and our businesses are each built on doing the right thing for our customers.

Our journey from four servers to 200 is a testament to the foundation we’ve built on Rackspace. And we know Rackspace will be there for us to support our future growth and ensure we can continue to scale to meet increasing demands in the ultra-competitive ecommerce world.

Want to hear more about how Under Armour works with Rackspace to solve for high-demand ecommerce and growth? Brian McManus, senior director of technology at Under Armour will present at Rackspace::Solve New York, a one-day summit where you’ll hear directly from companies like Under Armour about how they’re solving tough challenges in their businesses. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at Cipriani Wall Street.

Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York.

And stay tuned for details of the next Rackspace::Solve event in Chicago.

Expanding Our Partner Network With A Master Agent Program

September 8, 2014 9:00 am


This year, we’ve doubled down on helping our partners harness the power of the Managed Cloud and Fanatical Support for their clients. We have worked to empower our partners to offer their customers Rackspace’s superior cloud infrastructure and our suite of managed services that eliminate the need for their end customers to worry about the resources and management required to do it themselves.

As part of our continued effort to better serve our partners, we’re expanding our Rackspace Partner Network to include a new Master Agent/Agent Program, a program through which a new segment of partners can offer Rackspace Managed Cloud and award-winning Fanatical Support to their end customers.

Master Agents and Agents have historically been a key channel for reselling of traditional telco services like telephony and connectivity. As the industry evolves to embrace the cloud, these same Master Agents and Agents have proven to be fast adopters of cloud technologies with clients that are seeking out options to transform their businesses to the cloud. Through this new partner program, Rackspace will provide the highest level of support to ensure that an agent’s clients enjoy a smooth cloud implementation and support experience, which ultimately will enable agents to focus on building their business and engaging with clients.

Partners that join the Master Agent/Agent Program will have the opportunity to leverage a number of incentives, including market competitive compensation, pre- and post-sale resources, training and sales enablement and more.

We’re here to help you bring your clients into the Managed Cloud era and offer them the high-touch support they crave.

For more information on the new Rackspace Master Agent/Agent Program, email us at

How Downtime Impacts The Bottom Line 2014 [Infographic]

September 8, 2014 8:00 am


This year’s research confirms that downtime is still causing headaches for end-users and IT professionals. However, in addition to the frustration caused by outages, it’s also costing businesses more than ever. Take a look below in the How Downtime Impacts the Bottom Line 2014 infographic.

Rackspace::Solve New York: How SumAll Solves For Big Data, Scale

September 4, 2014 1:30 pm


By Dane Atkinson, CEO, SumAll

Since we formed SumAll in May 2011, we’ve crunched over 4 terabytes of data, and that’s growing at a rate of about 30 percent per month. We track more than $4 billion in revenue, 290 billion social actions and 190 billion sites for more than 250,000 businesses (we expect that to hit a million next year).

We’re seeing 1,000 percent growth per year.


Our growth is based on a simple premise: offer a real-time analytics platform for marketers, businesses and entrepreneurs to gain meaningful insights from data by collecting it into a single place. Whether it’s data from Facebook, Google, PayPal, Stripe, Amazon or Twitter; we present it in a simple, tangible way for our users to digest it and make intelligent decisions based on it.

Our platform is built on ObjectRocket and Rackspace, and they’ve helped us not only solve the big data challenges we face, but also scale so when we hit that million-customer mark we can seamlessly accommodate it.

Rackspace makes us feel like we’re not standing alone. Rackspace is the specialist we need to help us grow and solve the challenges we face.

Want to hear more about how SumAll solves for big data and scale? Dane Atkinson, CEO of SumAll will present at Rackspace::Solve New York, a one-day summit where you’ll hear directly from companies like SumAll about how they’re solving tough challenges in their businesses. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at Cipriani Wall Street.

Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York.

And stay tuned for details of the next Rackspace::Solve event in Chicago.


September 4, 2014 12:00 pm


The 2014 FIFA World Cup soccer tournament took the world by storm. Diehard soccer fans and newbies alike kept an eye on the matches day-in and day-out, at work and at home. The soccer-hungry audience searched for real time updates throughout the month-long tournament. They needed to know what happened on the pitch, and they wanted that info immediately.

Chances are you if you were looking for up-to-date futbol data you went to a site embedded with an infoplum – AFP responsive HTML5 application. A real time application by infoplum – AFP provided updates on scores, highlights, news, pictures, advanced statistics, profiles, predictive data and even 3D footage of goals – exactly what the sports world collectively craved throughout the World Cup. And infoplum – AFP relied on Rackspace Cloud Sites to stay up and running throughout the record-breaking traffic the tournament drove.

On the day before the opening ceremonies, the Cloud Sites team saw traffic from the infoplum application reach more than 6 million hits per hour, which is roughly 1,736 hits per second – a mind-blowing sum, especially considering it was well before the whistle blew to start the first match.

“This was by far the biggest event we have had. Cloud Sites was fundamental to the success of this event,” infoplum technical director Trevor George explained.

For this particular FIFA event, infoplum collaborated with Agence France-Presse (AFP) to serve live coverage (data and editorial) on all World Cup matches. This particular application was embedded on 161 websites, which were served to a worldwide audience in more than 20 countries and in more than 15 languages throughout the entire 32-day global soccer phenomenon. This resulted in an astonishing total of 4.1 billion – yes, billion – web requests. That’s 153 million hits per day and over 100 million pageviews.

infoplum, which was launched as Cadability in 1990, has been a loyal Cloud Sites customer since October 2008, when Cloud Sites was still called by its original name – Mosso. Well before the World Cup started and the traffic deluge began, infoplum alerted its Cloud Sites team. The Cloud Sites operations team has expertise in preparing customers and their sites for high traffic events.

“The scalability at Cloud Sites has always been there. So I was confident Cloud Sites could handle it,” George said.

For this particular event, the Cloud Sites ops team ensured enough nodes were configured in the high capacity cluster for the expected load. Then the Cloud Sites specialists configured the load balancers to have streamlined routes, including dedicated IP addresses to the high capacity cluster.

“Cloud Sites support jumped in 110 percent actively monitoring performance,” George noted. “There are actual people you could talk to, not just an email.”

Throughout the entire month, Rackspace engineers closely monitored infoplum’s environment and made any necessary adjustments to ensure the smoothest high traffic event possible.

Congratulations to our dear friends from Australia, infoplum, on an impressive high traffic event, and to the experts of the Rackspace Cloud Sites team for handling its highest super spike in Cloud Sites history.

Learn more about how Cloud Sites can rise to the occasion of any super spike.

Rackspace::Solve New York: Solve Tough IT Challenges

September 3, 2014 10:26 am


Does big data have you stymied? Are you considering DevOps to tear down productivity-killing siloes? Has your ecommerce site grown beyond your wildest dreams and you have to scale – and scale fast? You’re not alone.

Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York
Thursday, September 18 at The Cipriani Wall Street

Rackspace customers and solutions partners will share about how they stared-down and solved some of the toughest IT challenges and turned them into business-building opportunities when our Rackspace::Solve series of one-day thought leadership summits hits the Big Apple later this month.


At Rackspace::Solve New York, an exciting roster of cutting-edge companies will discuss about how they use technologies like virtualization, ecommerce, big data, DevOps and cloud architectures to drive real results and overcome technology challenges.

For example, Appboy will discuss how DevOps helps it solve for rapid customer growth and scale; Under Armour will share how it scales its high-demand ecommerce and brand experience; Docker will take the stage to talk about the future of applications; SumAll will showcase how it solves for big data; CloudMine will highlight how it solves for mobile performance in a regulated environment; and more.

Along with perspective from Rackspace customers and partners, you’ll get insight into the latest trends in private, hybrid and managed clouds from Rackspace experts and from respected industry analysts from 451 Research and Forrester Research.

Join me at Rackspace::Solve New York and hear from companies that have embraced game-changing technologies to fuel success.

I look forward to seeing you in New York!

Rackspace Solve::New York is Thursday, September 18 at The Cipriani Wall Street. Register now.

And stay tuned for details on Rackspace::Solve Chicago, Monday, October 20.

3 Enterprises Growing In A Cloudy World

August 4, 2014 8:00 pm


For mature enterprises, the cloud represents a way to get out from under the constraints of traditional IT. Unlike businesses born in the cloud, the existing systems and business processes in these organizations present unique challenges to cloud adoption. The company examples below offer three different stories of traditional IT teams growing into the cloud with measurable success.

Revlon: Unexpected Benefits in the Cloud

Simplicity was the theme behind Revlon’s cloud transformation. The iconic cosmetics company needed to consolidate operations to reduce latency between global offices, located on every continent except Antarctica.

It built and deployed its own private cloud. The implementation allowed Revlon to reduce hardware consumption from one physical to one virtual server to one physical server to 35 virtual servers. Today, Revlon handles 14,000 transactions per second, 15 automated application moves each month and a weekly backups up to 40TB.

And the cloud deployment came with unintended benefits according David Giambruno, Revlon CIO in a podcast interview, “As we put everything on our cloud, we realized that all of our data sits in one place now. So when you think of big data management, we’ve been able to solve the problem by classifying all the unstructured data in Revlon. We have the ability to look at all of our data, a couple of petabytes, in the same place….So when we’re trying to query the data, we already know where it is and what it does in its relationships, instead of trying to mine through unstructured data and make reasoning out of it.”

The cloud move for Revlon took years to accomplish and required a complete restructuring of IT that resulted in “taking the infrastructure out of the way so we can focus on what people want to do faster, cheaper, better,” says Giambruno. As a result Revlon has seen a 420 percent increase in project throughput without adding additional cost.

Alex & Ani: Massive Scale with a Small Team

In 2004, Carolyn Rafaelian, Founder, Creative Director and CEO of Alex & Ani took her experience working with her 40-plus year-old family jewelry business to launch her line of unique jewelry creations. The business features patented, expandable wire bangles adorned with meaningful charms.

Over the last decade, it’s expanded from a single store into a multichannel retailer, growing profits from $4.5 million to $230 million between 2010 and 2013. To support its hyper-growth, it needed flexible infrastructure to support rapidly scaling. But Alex & Ani wanted to focus on its retail operation, not turn into technology company. By selecting a provider-managed cloud, the company has managed spikes, supported a Magento platform and run complex data analytics – all without making massive investments in staff and hardware.

It chose a combination of dedicated servers and Rackspace Cloud Servers to mitigate hardware investments and have a single service provider for the technical guidance and under-the-hood maintenance needed to make it all work. Unlike Revlon, Alex & Ani didn’t have to worry about the infrastructure tweaks and staffing requirements needed to get up and running.

“Rackspace integrates and has dedicated teams for the best-of-breed partners that we work with, from Magento and eBay to Adobe and Akamai. Not only that, but they have subject matter experts for those particular tools. Often times we found that individual Rackspace employees had even worked at those companies in the past, which is exciting, because it means they know how the tools work—they know what it’s like under the hood and can advise us appropriately,” says Ryan Bonifacino Vice President of Digital Strategy, Alex and Ani.

Jordan Lawrence

Jordan Lawrence, a 25-year-old records management firm, used a similar approach to transition to the cloud one project at a time. Initially, Jordan Lawrence used the Rackspace Managed Cloud for testing on a secure FTP site, synchronizing customer data and email lists with a proprietary policy distribution application. That success led to the implementation of additional cloud services.

“After getting comfortable with Rackspace, we moved our internal email services to Rackspace Email and Hosted Exchange. Having these services completely hosted and managed by Rackspace allows our technical resources to concentrate on our core businesses,” says Marty Hansen, Executive VP of Technology with Jordan Lawrence.

After that successful move, Jordan Lawrence added Managed Virtualization. As a result, “We are able to host our SaaS services in an environment that is secure enough to pass information security audits from even our most stringent Fortune 100 and Financial Service customers, and meets SSAE16 standards,” shares Hansen.

With all of the cloud triumphs under its belt, Jordan Lawrence is ready to expand into more areas. Hansen says, “We see a complete solution in which Jordan Lawrence develops retention rules for SharePoint, while Rackspace implements and hosts the SharePoint environment for our customers.”


What does your cloud journey look like? From enterprises to small businesses, no two paths are the same and no business has to go it alone. With Managed Cloud services, businesses can get the guidance and tech resources needed to move away from cumbersome legacy systems and start innovating on the cloud.

Rackspace::Solve SF: Docker CEO On The Future of Applications [Video]

August 4, 2014 5:00 pm


At Rackspace::Solve San Francisco last week, Docker CEO Ben Golub took the stage to discuss the future of applications. In his talk, Golub drilled into how Docker uses container technology to change the way developers build, ship and run applications and how that can reduce the time it takes developers to launch apps from weeks to minutes.

Here is video of Golub’s full Rackspace::Solve presentation:


Rackspace::Solve San Francisco was the first of three one-day summits that showcased how companies are overcoming the toughest challenges in their businesses and for their customers. Rackspace::Solve events are currently scheduled for September 18 in New York City and October 20 in Chicago. Registration is open now.

Scaling Cloud Infrastructure Despite Brain Drain And Ad Hoc Processes

August 4, 2014 3:00 pm


By Matt Juszczak, Founder, Bitlancer

Your lean technology startup is gaining serious traction! Sales and marketing are steadily growing the user base. Meanwhile the operations team, armed with an assortment of scripts and ad hoc processes held together by library paste and true grit, is challenged to scale the cloud-based IT infrastructure to handle the increasing load. So you hire a software engineer with lots of cloud experience to build out a stable configuration management environment.

For a few months all is well, until that engineer abruptly splits. Now operations is left holding a bag of stale donuts. It turns out that nobody else on the team really knows how to use the configuration management tool. They only know how to spin up new virtual servers like they’d been shown. With each person already doing the work of many, nobody has the bandwidth to first learn the tool and then manage the various configurations left lying around.

You know what happens next, right? As development makes changes to the software, operations has to manually install the new virtual code and tweak the configurations manually every time they create a new server. Equally problematic, virtual server instances proliferate unchecked, leading to thousands of dollars in unexpected charges from the cloud service provider. This leads to a slash-and-burn server destruction scramble that accidentally takes down the production platform and disgruntles many of those new users. Heavy sighs emanate from the CTO’s office. What’s to be done?

This is where Bitlancer Strings rides in to save the day. Strings is truly easy to use and provides whatever level of visibility into the virtual infrastructure you desire. With a little support, most teams can migrate their cloud configuration management onto Strings quickly—some in as little as a week.

The benefits of adopting Strings in this scenario include:

  • Heaps of scarce developer time saved by the efficiency and ease of use of the Strings platform.
  • Near-instantaneous time-to-value and predictable, affordable monthly costs. No more surprise charges from the CSP.
  • Best of all, scalability concerns can be alleviated! Peace (whatever that means for a startup) is restored.

If your team is hampered by this kind of technical debt, Strings can help. Strings gives you everything you need to deploy, configure and manage your virtual servers, deploy applications, handle user authentication and SSH keys, and more.

Standards-based Strings works seamlessly with Rackspace services, as Bitlancer customers can attest. Strings also integrates with Rackspace Cloud Monitoring and the Rackspace Cloud Files backup service. Plus it can manage Rackspace Cloud Load Balancers with ease—all of which helps you get even more value from your Rackspace relationship.

To find out more about how Bitlancer Strings can quickly and cost-effectively turn your virtual configuration management pain into gain, visit us in the Rackspace Marketplace today.

This is a guest post written and contributed by Matt Juszczak, founder of Bitlancer, a Rackspace Marketplace partner. Bitlancer Strings is a cloud automation Platform-as-a-Service that radically simplifies the management of virtual servers and other cloud infrastructure, enabling startups and SMBs to preserve time, money and sanity in the cloud.