Archive for the 'Dedicated Server Hosting' Category

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Layered Tech Preps LT PACT 2008

Article by Justin Lee, theWHIR.com

January 29, 2007 — (WEB HOST INDUSTRY REVIEW) — Conferences and exhibitions play a significant role in the hosting industry, helping companies to broaden their market reach and potentially draw in new customers and partners.  But like some other areas of the industry, the market has become saturated with dozens of conferences and exhibitions being held each year, including giants like HostingCon and ISPCON, a challenge for the operators of smaller events. 

LT PACT 2008 Hosting EventFor two years, utility hosting services provider Layered Technologies has worked to distinguish LT PACT event as an important consideration among hosting related events.  Though it is held by a hosting company, LT PACT is not strictly self-serving, but is designed to benefit its attendees and the presenting companies within the context of the environment of Layered Tech’s customers and partners, says president and COO Todd Abrams.

“It’s not directly a sales objective for Layered Tech,” says Abrams. “It’s really about broadening the overall knowledge base of the people there, as well as experts of the industry that our clients and partners don’t really get to talk with.”

Returning to Las Vegas, Nevada’s Caesars Palace Resort from June 25 to 27, LT PACT 2008 will offer presentations from industry analysts, key industry players, Web hosts and other leaders, discussing issues that are pertinent to the industry.  The conference, now in its third year, will provide attendees with further industry insights, the ability to interact with new products in workshops and ways to boost their revenue with improved business practices.  Read on >>

Learn more about LT PACT 2008 >>

LT PACT 2008

        

Dual Core vs. Dual Processor

The Mother(board) of all Battles! Geoff Pennington, Layered Tech

When browsing through Layered Technologies’ offerings, you’ll see a lot of reference to Dual this and Dual that… but what does it all mean?  Below summarizes what you need to know.  Let’s start with terminology. 

  • Dual Processors means there are 2 physical processors in the machine.

  • Dual Core means there is 1 physical processor with 2 cores in it.  (You can do the math for Quad Core and Quad Processor… more on this later.)

Now that we know the physical difference between the two, let’s get into some specifics.  Primarily these systems are built to perform in the same light.  Multitasking is multitasking, but there are some underlying effects for both.    

  • Dual Processor has RAM and cache space setup for each processor, so if you have a process running on Processor 1, it’s only getting the RAM of Processor 1.  However, if you have your resources beefed up it doesn’t matter, and your system will run more efficiently because the processes are split between processors and not cores (less burnout). 

  • Dual Core machines are the new light for small business owners, as they are slightly cheaper and provide pretty much the same thing.  The major drawback to Dual Core is your putting the stress of the entire system on one physical CPU, which can be pretty tasking for a little chip.  However, a multi-core system has the ability to handle multiple threads separately yet simultaneously.  This makes multi-core systems perfect for multi-threaded applications.

Don’t get me wrong, any of these problems can be remedied by ensuring you have the proper amount of RAM, and you put some time into task scheduling.  Both setups are capable of doing the same things, but its how you configure your system to run efficiently that matters.  That can be on a Dual Processor or a Dual Core.   

Benchmarks: According to the benchmarks run on the AMD Athlon 4400 Dual Core, the AMD Opteron 248 Dual Processor, the Intel Pentium D 830 Dual Core, and the Intel Xeon 3.0 Dual Processor they all run at very comparable standards.  AMD had better resource efficiency, and Intel had better processing power (surprise, surprise).  The overall winner of the tests was the Pentium D, but with a little research you will see that the difference is minimal, and you should really just look at your setup and figure out what configuration would fit best.    

Have more questions?  Comment here or email me at gpennington@layeredtechnologies.com

Private Racks: Plan for Growth

Geoff Pennington, Layered TechWhen it comes to private racks you want to make sure to plan ahead.  If you have 6U worth of equipment now, you will want to get a larger rack unless you plan to NEVER grow, and who does that?  Our private rack offerings start at ¼ for 6U worth of space, and grow from there to ½ rack with 12U, and full rack with 24U. 

 “How will I know what I need?”

First off, you must develop a plan for your infrastructure.  I realize planning for 3 years in advance is not easy, but keep in mind the immediate future at least.  Below I will cover a few situations to give you an idea of how you should start.

  • If you have 1-4 servers with no infrastructure then a ¼ rack will suffice, because you have at least 2 more slots for growth. 

  • If you have 2-4 servers with at least 1 piece of infrastructure (firewall or load balancer) you should probably go for the ½ rack to plan for expansion.  This will give you plenty of room for expansion, as with this type of setup quick expansion is typical.

  • If you have 6-10 servers with no infrastructure then a ½ rack will suffice.
  • If you have 6-10 servers with infrastructure a full rack is the way to go.

  • From here, we get into the big stuff.  Typically at this point you can foresee your growth, and you can plan accordingly.  If you need a full rack get one!  Don’t try to stuff everything into a ½ rack to save some money.  You will lose out a lot more in the long run.  Migration fees, relocation downtime, IP changes, and other issues that come with having to move for growth cost a lot more than the upgrade. 

 “What do I do when I start?”

So you have one server now, and you need to add a switch, or maybe add 2 more servers and move to a rack.  This is where the planning is most important.  Because to get this upgrade, you’re going to have to move anyway, so why not move to your final location first, instead of having to do the whole painful process again later? 

Another option instead of moving would be to setup an identical setup inside a private rack and configure it and move data over in the time your servers overlap, but then your paying for a month twice anyway. 

All in all, sometimes you can’t get the full setup right away, and that’s ok, but plan for the required steps of migration early.

Have a question?  Ask and yee’ shall receive (an answer =) `~ Geoff Pennington

Layered Tech Announces SEPT Specials

Layered Technologies Announces September “Out of this World” Sale

Sale includes 30 days of “One – Day Only Specials” and Win a Free Mega Server Contest

Plano, TX (September 5, 2007) – Layered Technologies, a leading provider of reliable, affordable, and scalable on-demand, self-managed utility hosting services, today announces their “Out of this World” sale. The sale includes 30 days of one-day specials, including up to 60% off standard packages and/or FREE upgrades.

Layered Technologies is also including in its “Out of this World” sale the chance to win a free mega server. Entries are currently being accepted for the most creative written, graphic, or video submission that reflects the theme of the “Out of the World” sale. The winner can choose either a free “MEGA Server” (for 6 months) or a “Bronze GRID” (for 3 months).  The winner will be chosen by Layered Technologies on October 8, 2007.
 
With clients in over 120 countries, Layered Technologies’ custom technology solutions allow both large and small customers to rapidly deploy on-demand hosting and utility computing services, providing all the controls of colocation without the start up costs, capital investments, long term contracts and associated challenges. By partnering with Layered Technologies, companies are able to achieve ROI quickly via reduced capital investment, total cost of ownership (TCO), labor reduction, training, and floor space. Layered Technologies can have a company up and running in days versus months.

For additional information on the “Out of this World” sale and to view the daily special, please visit: http://www.layeredtech.com/promotions/liftoff-sale.php.. For additional information on Layered Technologies, please visit www.layeredtechnologies.com.

ANNOUNCEMENT: LT'S FREE Server Contest and 30 Days of Specials in September

[30 Day Countdown] 5, 4, 3, 2, 1… Blast Off with Layered Tech’s “Out of this World Sale”.

Travel through space with Layered Technologies as we lift-off with amazing, gravity defying specials throughout September; each and every day for 30 days we will be posting a new mind-blowing offer that’s sure to please – with up to 60% OFF standard packages and/or FREE upgrades.  ACT NOW!  Limited quantities available. Check out today’s specials here: http://www.layeredtech.com/promotions/liftoff-sale.php

Be sure to check back with Mission Control on a DAILY basis for new promos that are sure to propel you to the next galaxy and beyond.  Visit LT’s web site each day for latest specials at: http://www.layeredtech.com/promotions/liftoff-sale.php

PLUS, as you reposition your satellite to point to Layered Tech, we will also be launching a new “Win a FREE MEGA SERVER Contest”.  Find out more at: http://www.layeredtech.com/promotions/liftoff-sale.php

Announcing: FREE Server Contest Winner

Layered Tech Announces Winner of Monster Server Contest

“12 Days of Christmas in July” ends with contest winner

Plano, TX (August 28, 2007) – Layered Technologies, a leading provider of reliable, affordable, and scalable on-demand, self-managed utility hosting services, today announces the winner of their Monster Server Contest, part of their “12 Days of Christmas in July” program. Timothy Brown from Smithfield, VA has been chosen as the winner, among over 300 entries.

Brown submitted a video entitled “Yes, Nerds can Rap” that pleads to Santa on why he deserves to win the free server. Brown receives an AMD 2220 Opteron with 4GB RAM, 2 x 1000GB SATA Drives, 6000GB BW, 8IP, 100Mbps Port for 6 months from Layered Technologies.

“Timothy’s video was very creative and energetic,” said Michael Platner, CEO of Layered Technologies. “We are thrilled that we can reward Timothy for his efforts as part of our “12 Days of Christmas in July” initiative.”

With clients in over 120 countries, Layered Technologies’ custom technology solutions allow both large and small customers to rapidly deploy on-demand hosting and utility computing services, providing all the controls of colocation without the start up costs, capital investments, long term contracts and associated challenges. By partnering with Layered Technologies, companies are able to achieve ROI quickly via reduced capital investment, total cost of ownership (TCO), labor reduction, training, and floor space. Layered Technologies can have a company up and running in days versus months.

To view Timothy’s video, go to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTKCNs3FL-w

For additional info on Layered Technologies, please visit www.layeredtechnologies.com

"It was suppose to be a simple, quick move"…

I thought I would leave alone for at least a while the Hostway data center migration saga.  Some time has passed and yes eventually people will forget about this incident as they have with many others (maybe not of the same magnitude) – but did everyone really think it could be successfully pulled off? 

When I heard about this incident all I could say was “WOW”. 

We have been in the infrastructure, and utility computing business for a few years and early on thought that we were extremely smart folks and could migrate 225 servers overnight, within an 8 hour window with little to no extended interuption to any of our early clients.    Boy, were we wrong!!  We had provided the clients their new IP’s, setup the new infrastrucutre, configured the racks, routers, switches and all the space, and the plan was to unplug and then plug back in at the new facility all of a 15 minute drive away.  Let’s just say that didn’t work out so well….  That 8 hours grew into an extended 48 hour workday!!

 The “WOW” response when I heard about the HostWay incident was when I read:

“The planned July 27 data center migration at ValueWeb, a Hostway company, involved moving more than 3,700 servers 270 miles, from Affinity’s Miami hosting facility to a Hostway data center in Tampa, Fla., according to Rich Miller, reporter for Data Center Knowledge, in Lawrenceville, N.J.

What were they thinking? 

These guys are not dumb guys.  I believe after merging with Affinity Internet a few months back they now have operations facilities in over 10 countries with thousands of clients and managaing thousands of servers.

But come on.  While hardware is running, and deemed to be reliable it is often left best untouched.  The old saying applies here, “if it ain’t broke don’t try and fix it”.  When you power down and try to then bring back up boxes there is always going to be a % that will fail. 

I am sure they planned for this but with 3,700 servers being moved at once, I don’t see logically how they expected to deal with the consequences all at once or within the time frame they allotted or thought to be tolerable from a client’s perspective.

Anyways, I feel for Hostway and for the clients that it effected.  The 8-12 hours of planned downtime, seemingly turned into a nightmare for many clients, whose business reputation relies on their provider’s uptime and reliabitlity. 

After our experience a few years back, as I stated above, we swore that we would look, build and develop something that would never make us have to move a physical box from DC to DC ever again. **(unless a client specifically has requested a move) 

A main point we focussed on was being able to move data and applications from one server or facility to another without the requirement to migrate the underlying gear.  With the launch of our VPDC (Virtual Private Data Center) powered by Applogic we have enabled clients to do this.  In the age of SaaS companies, thousands of new applications being put online each day and uptime being an essential part of conducting daily business the expectation of anything less is sub par.

A great example of this is Albert Wu who was faced with a similar facitlity to facility migration.

“The migration turned out to be an extremely simple process, that basically involved issuing a migrate command on the old grid, instructing it to migrate the app to the new grid. The command took some time to finish executing, as it had to move quite a bit of data. But once completed, all we had to do was reconfigure the app on the new grid with new ip addresses for the app, the gateway, netmask and dns ip address, which only took a few minutes. Amazingly, we were then able to fire up our grid app on the new grid! No hardware issues to deal with what-so-ever!”

We continue to focus of how we can provide offerings to our clients that allow them to focus on their business, and not worry about the underlying infrastructure, where it is located, is it up or down, is there a bad drive etc.  Our clients need to be able to provision additional resources on the fly when their applications calls for it, be able to shift and server data and applications to and from mutliple geographic points while not having to worrying about migrating anything physically.  We are making the hardware agnostic, and providing a scalable platform where migrations and growth are only a few short keystrokes away.

I expect to see many more players pushing hard in the marketplace – bringing many new virtualization and utility offerings into the market this year. Ifour competitors do not I believe they will be falling short of clients expectations and requirements.

The dedicated server landscape is changing and everyone involved needs to innovate, adopt and grow.

All good things to come….