3Tera Inc. has rolled out a new wrinkle in cloud computing: the ability to leverage the company's network of data center partners to deploy a global cloud infrastructure.
3Tera, which makes the AppLogic grid operating software, has lined up partners in seven countries, which allows customers to choose the location of their data center and easily move hosted applications between regions. This geographic mobility lets developers move online applications closer to customers to improve latency. It also offers the ability to duplicate and migrate apps globally in a matter of minutes.
"The cloud should be in multiple data centers in order to provide real high availability, redundancy and disaster recovery for users' applications," said Barry Lynn, Chairman and CEO of 3Tera. "When those datacenters are dispersed globally, applications can be moved to different geographical locations if and when needed.”
3Tera doesn't host its own platform, but licenses its AppLogic software to hosting companies to build virtual private data centers that can power cloud applications. "When we offer service, we're doing it through our partners," said Bert Armijo, Senior VP of Sales and Product for 3Tera. "We don't own the server. We don't want to own a server. Customers sometimes come to us because they see us as the creator of the technology. We can give them a single point of billing and single point of support."
3Tera's most prominent partner in the U.S. has been Layered Technologies, and yesterday it said DNS Europe Ltd. will provide data centers in London and Belgrade, Serbia. 3Tera has also struck partnerships with data center providers in Japan (XSeed), Singapore (ClearGrid), Argentina and the Netherlands and Serbia.
"We're building up Points of Presence around the globe," said Armijo. "It's a significant undertaking. I don't have to buy servers in all these countries, so this is an excellent opportunity for us."
Armijo said international users represent a substantial piece of 3Tera's business, and that its global expansion has been driven by customer requests. That growth is due to local demand in overseas markets, as well as app developers' desire for a broader footprint. "Latency issues making important to get instances as close as possible to the user," said Armijo.
An example is the travel site EveryTrail. "The nature of our application, a Web 2.0 platform where users from all over the world are uploading GPS data and photos to share with others, will greatly benefit from a global cloud solution,” said Joost Schreve, founder and CEO of EveryTrail, Inc. “With users and trips from over 160 countries, we find it extremely beneficial to be able to run in multiple locations without having to deal with infrastructure and hardware configurations. AppLogic technology and 3Tera’s business model of working with leading datacenter operators has given us the ability to access world-class computing infrastructure. It really removed barriers for our company.”
While 3Tera can provide a customer service front-end, it's also working to enhance its browser-based control panel for managing virtual assets. Users currently need to open separate browser windows to manage different data centers. Armijo said 3Tera is developing an updated AppLogic interface to allow customers to manage all of their instances in a single browser window and drag and drop apps between data centers in different locations.
AppLogic allows companies to run applications in a scalable virtualized environment. Customers can either install the AppLogic software in their own data center or lease virtual prviate data centers at Tera’s hosting partners.