NephoScale is a cloud hosting provider and a pioneer in high performance infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS). We've created a high performance next-generation cloud infrastructure platform, named NephOS, that sets a new standard for performance, price, and customization. The NephOS platform, which was developed from the ground-up by a team of cloud industry veterans, was designed every step of the way with the goal of maximizing performance and flexibility. NephoScale is one of only two companies worldwide that has developed it's own cloud application stack, software defined networking technology, and cloud orchestration build language. We are able to accommodate our customers needs with a combination of price, performance, customization, and support that other cloud providers simply cannot match.
The NephoScale Challenge
Bring us any scenario for running an application in the cloud, and we will be able to optimize its performance in a way that other cloud hosting providers cannot. We own all of the technology we use, so we can customize solutions and make almost anything possible in the cloud.
The NephoScale Cloud IaaS Platform
The NephOS platform sets a new standard for saving users time and increasing the speed and predictability of their application deployments and changes. The NephOS IaaS cloud hosting services platform is technically superior to other cloud services offerings in its level of flexibility, and is paving the way in the cloud industry in the areas of advanced orchestration and management.
The NephOS platform offers:
- CloudScript - The first build language for the cloud, which saves developers and systems administrators both time and money
- Hybrid Compute - High performance virtual and dedicated physical servers offering the best of both worlds for added performance and flexibility in critical areas
- Elastic Networking - Software defined networking (SDN) technology that creates low latency high throughput any-to-any point-to-mulitpoint connectivity between all dedicated and virtual servers, and enables users to create an unlimited number of both public and private layer 2 broadcast domains (subnets).
NephoScale's primary cloud infrastructure services are:
- Cloudlet Virtual Servers
- BareMetal Dedicated Servers
- ObjectStor Cloud Storage
- Elastic Networking
NephoScale developed entirely it's own software stack which is called NephOS. The NephOS software architecture is at the heart of the NephoScale's advantage in providing cloud hosting services to it's clients. CloudScript is an advanced cloud orchestration tool that differentiates the NephOS platform because it allows users to manage all resources, applications stacks, code, and their associated dependencies in an easy-to-use and centralized fashion.
- Unified Security Architecture
- Isolation measures are incorporated throughout the infrastructure and virtual domains
- The NephOS platform provides IT governance with simplified management of policies for authentication, authorization, and accounting
- NephoScale CloudScript Templates provide reference architectures that contain best-practice security guidelines
- IDE, Portal, API, CLI toolkit, and CloudScript
- Multiple input mechanisms available by which a user can provision and manage their cloud infrastructure across the NephOS Platform
- Ecosystem Partners and Developer Communities
- NephoScale provides value added services, such as API tool kits and client bindings (e.g. jcloud and boto), that partners and developer communities can leverage to integrate their solutions into the NephOS platform
- Users can leverage NephoScale’s library of Server Images and CloudScript Templates created by the community
- Orchestration Tools
- CloudScript, NephoScale’s flagship orchestration technology, is used to simplify the management of all cloud resources, application stacks, code, and their associated dependencies in an easy-to-use and centralized fashion using always one idempotent text file
- CloudScript delivers a complete lifecycle management process for cloud-based applications allowing for the optimization of infrastructure using agile development methodologies to create infrastructure code in a continuous, error free, and iterative cycle
- CloudScript's built-in Integrated Development Environment (IDE) speeds up the process of developing infrastructure code, reduces deployment errors with its debugging and test capabilities, and increases the predictability and speed of application deployments. The concept is to empower users to "Treat infrastructure as code" and make it possible for the creation and management of infrastructure to be truly a software development activity.
- Platform Services
- This is the layer that provides the connection between Data Center Services and Orchestration Services, which includes CloudScript, Web Portal, and API
- The list of services provides a set of interfaces, automation functions, and tools to manage the entire datacenter infrastructure
- Data Center Services
- This is the layer where NephOS interfaces with the physical infrastructure and is comprised of Network Services, Compute Services, and Storage Services
- White-label the NephoScale customer portal and provide on-demand cloud IaaS
- Develop applications for clients against the NephoScale API
- Sell their software on the NephoScale platform
- Deliver a SaaS offering directly to the general public
- Produce customized CloudScript Templates and NephoScale Server Images as a value added service to clients
Elastic Networking is what sets NephoScale's network apart from the competition. NephoScale's Elastic Networking technology provides superior network scalability, simplicity, performance, and security.
Single private layer 2 broadcast domain for all virtual and physical servers within a given account
Network Domains, enabling users to create servers with public domain only, private domain only, and to not bind IP addresses to either of those domains
A single integrated network resource pool as opposed to resources being spread across separate PODs or Grids
Virtual any-to-any switch fabric between virtualized and bare metal server networks, as opposed to a single bottlneck between these networks like most cloud providers offer
Secure private high speed network access between all servers and ObjectStor cloud storage
Support for broadcast and multicast apps, tagged VLANs, and multiple isolated virtual networks (sub-broadcast domains)
Scales beyond 4,096 vlans per network (IEEE 802.1q spec. limitation) delivering a scalable unified resource pool, rather than isolated resources in different PODs/Grids like most public IaaS cloud providers
What value does "Elastic Networking" deliver to NephoScale's customers?
By default, every NephoScale account is given two broadcast domains, a public front-end network and a private backend network. All Cloudlet virtual servers and BareMetal dedicated servers can communicate across either isolated network. The public network is typically intended for Internet facing traffic. The private network is typically reserved for private inter-server traffic such as communication between web server and application servers, or between application servers and database servers. What makes NephoScale's offering unique is that we don't cobble together intermediary devices like metro-Ethernet switches to tie disparate VLANs together with the goal of making them appear as if they are on the same broadcast domains. With NephoScale, all of your servers uniformly exist on the same L2 broadcast domain, regardless if they are on different POD zones or even on different floors of our datacenter.
One of the main benefits of NephoScale's Elastic Networking is that because each customer has their own Layer 2 broadcast domain so it is easy for them to run applications that require broadcast and multicast support. This level of flexibility cannot be achieved with most cloud service platforms. Examples of broadcast traffic use cases are: running a Windows Directory Server environment, a DHCP environment, or other environments that rely heavily on broadcast traffic. Examples of multicast traffic use cases are: running IP telephony applications, IPTV applications, infrastructure software like Gigaspaces, or other environments that rely heavily on multi-cast traffic.
NephoScale also allows customers to create complex networked environments supporting popular features like tagged VLANs and multiple isolated virtual networks (sub-broadcast domains). For instance, if you're interested in building out a private cloud environment using BareMetal dedicated servers but your existing virtualization configuration is already leveraging tagged VLANs, NephoScale supports running tagged VLANs encapsulated using our Elastic Networking tunneling technology.
NephoScale’s ObjectStor Object-Based Cloud Storage, otherwise known as File Based Cloud Storage, is a highly scalable and redundant cloud storage service that is designed to complement the NephoScale Cloudlet Virtual Servers and On-Demand BareMetal Dedicated Cloud Servers to make complex computing applications easier to implement and scale. ObjectStor is a web based service built on standardized servers, and provides built-in redundancy and failover management resulting in a cost effective, ultra reliable, highly redundant cloud storage infrastructure.
Architecture elements of ObjectStor cloud storage are:
- Cloud Storage Nodes - data is written down (replicated) three times across three different physical storage nodes creating greater than five 9’s availability
- Logical Storage Rings - rings track information about all the storage partitions and how they are distributed between the different cloud storage nodes and disks
- Storage Proxy Servers - redundant clusters of storage proxy servers handle web requests
- Storage Load Balancers - multiple clusters of redundant servers that balance incoming requests and distribute the requests among the cloud storage proxy servers
The hardware design of the host servers that the Cloudlet Virtual Servers reside on is based upon the collective experience of the NephoScale development team, which has been building and testing cloud infrastructure platforms for almost 10 years. The hardware architecture of the Cloudlet host servers has a uniquely tuned combination of CPU, RAM, RAID controller, and high performance disk subsystem. The number and type of disks chosen for each Cloudlet host server is optimized to maximize performance based upon the amount of RAM installed and the specific hypervisor being used. The performance continues to be fine tuned and maximized based on ongoing testing and refinement.
- NephoScale Cloudlet Virtual Servers are on-demand virtual servers based upon modern server technology that offer the best performance of any comparable cloud servers
- Cloudlet Virtual Servers out-perform comparable services from the leading IaaS cloud services companies by up to three times.
- 13 Cloudlet server configurations available consisting of 1 to 16 CPU cores and .25 to 32 GB RAM
- Each Cloudlet host server node has persistent local high performance RAID 6 storage, dual power supplies, and redundant network connections
- NephoScale BareMetal Dedicated Servers are physical servers with no resident hypervisor guaranteeing low latency and high I/O operations
- BareMetal servers are available with ultra high performance solid state drives (SSD) offering over 50,000 IOPs and 1.3GB/sec sequential write speeds
- All NephoScale servers have independent secure 1 Gbps connections to both public and private networks