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SSD Cloud VPS now in Silicon Valley with 100% of revenue donated to helping homeless!

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Atlantic.Net Expands Out West With New Silicon Valley Data Center & Partners with Project Homeless Connect To Donate 100% Of The First Month’s Revenue To Helping San Francisco’s Homeless!​

We are excited to announce the opening of our newest data center in Silicon Valley! Located near San Francisco, California, this facility offers the same features as our other locations, plus faster access and lower latency for west coast customers. To send our launch into the stratosphere, we will be donating 100% of the revenue raised within the first month of operation to Project Hom​eless Connect, a homelessness awareness organization dedicated to connecting homeless San Franciscans with the care they need!

Whether you need 1 server or 1000s, now is a great time to add servers in our Silicon Valley location. Not only do you get a great product, but with us donating your revenue to help homeless people this holiday season, you’re doing good for the community! Help us make this holiday season a bit brighter for someone who needs help the most – bring you workloads to us.

Try a new SSD Cloud VPS Server in any of our locations by clicking here!


Scalable Flexibility: Custom Dedicated Real World Scenario

Flexible gear

Hosting solutions are usually offered as standardized packages so that they are easier to price and understand. However, it’s often difficult to figure out what to start with and how you can adapt along the way. You need to make sure that the solution you choose is flexible enough to scale with your business, as indicated by this recent interaction between our hosting consultant and a real client (edited and anonymized for clarity and privacy):

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Hybrid Hosting – Combining Private & Public Cloud: A Real World Scenario

partnership concepts business illustration

It used to be the case that the media and IT industry just spoke of “the cloud,” a way to distribute resources to increase reliability, speed, and cost-effectiveness. However, security was a reasonable concern since all users share the same machines, even if they each have their own virtual private servers within the network. Soon the demand rose for solutions that combine the rapidity and agility of a distribution model with a core focus on data isolation. That concept was the private cloud, which has grown enormously: it had $8 billion of overall revenue in 2010 versus $32 billion in 2013.

Now many organizations are looking to combine their public and private clouds into a hybrid system. The appeal of this type of environment is broad, with Gartner predicting that half of enterprises will have a hybrid cloud deployed by 2017.

Real World Scenario – hybrid cloud

Below is a Real World Scenario (RWS) based on a transcript between one of our hosting consultants and a client in need of a hybrid cloud.

Consultant:

Welcome to Atlantic.Net. Please tell us about your hosting needs.

Client:

I’m in pricing stages with [major cloud vendor] and just discovered you.  I’m the VP of Engineering.  We’re looking for a cloud hosting provider that has Sarbanes Oxley and SSAE 16 compliance.  We need ~30 VMs of various specs running a traditional Java stack with Postgres.  We have one custom appliance, a modified CentOS kernel that runs the iFax server.  Ideally, we need ~30 standard Ubuntu LTS or CentOS cloud VMs and one VMWare or Linux KVM hosted VM for the iFax appliance.  I would love to discuss pricing and technical requirements with you.  The sooner the better.

Consultant:

Please call me at the number listed below, or provide me with your phone number and I will call you.

Your application would work on our Public Cloud VPS platform, which is unmanaged. However, we do not at this time offer a firewall solution on our Public Cloud Platform, so that is an issue since you have the Sarbanes Oxley requirement.

We can also provide you with a proposal for a Managed Private Cloud platform that would meet all of your security requirements. We would need answers to the following questions in order to send you a proposal.

[Questions included in reply (below)]

Client:

I’m new to working under the Sarbanes Oxley compliance; however, I’m familiar with running servers in public and private clouds.  My hope is that if we firewall each individual host, we can still be compliant.  If this is possible in the public cloud, that would probably be the most cost-effective.  If this cannot be achieved, then we would be interested in the private cloud options.

1.) How many virtual machines (VM) do you anticipate having to accommodate during the first year of this project?

Our first year is estimated to have 30 VMs.  These include web servers, Postgres servers and several lightweight clients that retrieve data.  See below for specifics.

2.) What are the specifications (RAM, CPUs, Hard Drives, Operating System, etc) required for each VM?

Here is an estimate of our needs:

  • Dev tools: 2 cores, 4GB RAM,  100GB storage.
  • Production Web 1: 4 cores, 8GB RAM, 60GB storage.
  • Production Web 2: 4 cores, 8GB RAM, 60GB storage.
  • Production Postgres: 8 cores, 16GB RAM, 160GB storage.
  • Staging Web: 4 cores, 8GB RAM, 60GB storage.
  • Staging Postgres: 4 cores, 8GB RAM, 160GB storage.
  • iFax: 2 cores, 4GB RAM, 160GB storage.  *Custom CentOS appliance (with tainted kernel), 32-bit.*
  • 20 Downloader VMs: 2 cores, 1GB RAM, 40GB storage.

The iFax VM is a custom appliance built on 32-bit CentOS, but it uses a custom kernel.  For this reason, it needs to be hosted in VMWare or Linux KVM.  All the other VMs will run Ubuntu 14.04. (They could optionally run CentOS.)  The downloader VMs are very lightweight clients that use a browser that downloads information from the IRS website.

3.) What is the anticipated growth rate in VMs per year?

Difficult to say.  I predict 5-10% VM growth year-to-year.

4.) What level of redundancy is required for this project?

The storage should be redundant and I assume you own the hardware replacement concerns.  I typically use RAID 10 in order to achieve good reads and writes, but I leave it to you to define your best redundancy/speed ratio.  The VMs don’t need to be redundant but should be backed up (see below).

5.) What is the budget for this project?

This is a brand new project.  I don’t have actual numbers at the moment. We are a small and steadily growing company.  We are in talks with other hosting providers, so a competitive price quote is ideal.

6.) When do you need to have the project online?

We would like to see the environment provisioned and available as quickly as possible.

[Article continues through link below]

Rise of the hybrid cloud

Cloud portfolio management firm RightScale released its annual State of the Cloud Report in April, based on interviews with 1068 IT executives from diverse business sectors. 74% are currently operating more than one cloud (a multi-cloud setup), and 48% are currently strategizing a hybrid solution. Discuss your options with Atlantic.Net, a company that has the experience and flexibility to meet your specific needs, as demonstrated by this RWS.

>>> Part 2 – Hybrid Hosting Real World Scenario

By Moazzam Adnan


Windows vs. Linux or cPanel VPS Hosting – Part II – Similarities, Price Advantage & cPanel

Virtualization technology concept

<<< Go to Part I – Scripting Languages & Windows

In the first part of this two-part series, we discussed advantages and disadvantages of the two major operating systems used for hosting: Linux and Windows. The basic differentiation was that Linux is open source, more widely available, and usually much less expensive; but Microsoft is necessary for coding with .NET & ASP. After discussing the pros and cons of each OS, the first part took a closer look at Windows VPS hosting (specifically with Windows Server 2012 R2).

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Windows vs. Linux VPS Hosting – Part I – Scripting Languages & Windows

Virtualization technology concept

When determining which VPS hosting package is best for your business, the first choice you will need to make is which operating system (OS) is right for you. Windows and Linux are the two major candidates, since most companies choose to host with one of those two options (although FreeBSD is another popular choice that we offer).

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HIPAA Compliant .NET Web-Based Application Hosting: A Real World Scenario

Hybrid hosting comic

The majority of healthcare organizations – including plans, providers, and clearinghouses – must be fully compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). One aspect of compliance is contracting with outside specialists that can handle certain data-related responsibilities. These technology partners are experts at hosting compliant websites and applications, serving as business associates (via business associate agreements, or BAAs) for healthcare clients and their affiliates.

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Commonly Asked Questions and How-To’s About HIPAA Compliance: Part 2

hippo compliance humor

<<< Part 1

Below is the conclusion of our two-part series covering HIPAA compliance, so that healthcare plans, providers, and clearinghouses have ample information. We continue by addressing the remainder of six common questions, followed by a couple of “snapshot tutorials” that address the needs of those preparing to deploy HIPAA compliant systems.

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Commonly Asked Questions and How-To’s About HIPAA Compliance

hippo compliance humor

In order to work with many healthcare organizations, hosting services and data centers must have the knowledge, resources, and equipment to exhibit adherence with federal regulations. Specifically, their environment and tools (hardware and software), as well as their processes, must meet the parameters of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act of 2009 (HITECH). Typically systems that are fully legal regarding federal compliance rules are referred to as “HIPAA compliant.”

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Efficiency, Upfront Price, TCO: Solid State Drives Are On the Rise

SSD vs. HDD dogs humor

We recently drafted a piece for Wired on cloud computing trends (submitted but not yet published at this writing). One of the trends we discussed in the article is the transition from hard disk drives (HDD’s) to solid state drives (SSD’s) by cloud service providers. Although this development is still in the “early adopter” phase, we expect SSD’s to become a standard expectation by the end of 2014.

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HIPAA Economic Impact – Real World Scenario & Broad View of Business Opportunities

HIPAA snacks comic

The healthcare industry is growing fast, and with it is the sector that specializes in Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliance, a.k.a. HIPAA compliance. This form of compliance is critical for healthcare plans, providers, and clearinghouses: it allows the US Department of Health & Human Services to know businesses are safeguarding patient information. Specifically, HHS verifies that businesses closely interacting with protected health information (PHI) safeguard it in the manners described by the Privacy Rule and Security Rule of the law’s Title II.

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