When Amazon launched their Cloud Computing services in 2006 it was the start of the on-demand infrastructure revolution. For the first time users could launch a server in the cloud with a credit card and a few minutes of configuration time. Today, business organizations, both large and small, are increasingly turning to Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) to provide essential data center services in a flexible and cost-effective way. For many people, IaaS is synonymous with Amazon Web Services EC2. But AWS is not right for all companies and workloads.
Since 2006, numerous Cloud Computing providers have arrived as alternatives to Amazon - most of them having either been traditional managed hosting providers that offer Cloud Computing based on the VMware hypervisor or other pure-play cloud computing providers that have built their offerings on open-source stacks like OpenStack.
Amazon EC2 and other cloud alerternatives are increasingly being considered 1st Generation clouds – with architectures that prevent them from moving forward to address some fundemental issues. Issues like cloud performance, “noisy neighbor”, non-flexible instance sizes and complex replicaiton and setup procesures that leave users vulnerable to availability zone outages and performance variability.
Second generation cloud computing providers or Cloud Computing 2.0 bring many new benefits, including better scalability, better performance, higher reliability and lower pricing. Plus, Cloud Computing 2.0 providers offer modern APIs and tools like graphical data center design tools allowing developers and operations team members to set up and provision an entire network infrastructure in mere minutes.