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Brief: Building a Real-World Model to Assess Virtualization Platforms. By measuring workload & platform performance, and power consumption Intel was able to approximate TCO of each platform.

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Interland Ups the Ante on Shared Hosting
By Dan Muse

September 16, 2002

Interland Inc., an Atlanta-based Web hosting services provider that targets small and medium-size businesses (SMB), today announced the introduction of blueHALO (High Availability Load Optimizing), a network architecture for shared hosting.

Interland said in a statement that the patent-pending technology will “revolutionize shared Web hosting, setting new standards for innovation, performance and value.”

blueHALO took two years and $2 million to develop and is designed to bring a new level of reliability to shared Web hosting, said John Harper, Interland’s senior vice president of operations.

Shared hosting is attractive to the SMB market because it allows hundreds of customer Web sites to reside on a single Web server, which translates into costs ranging from $20 to $100 a month. Dedicated hosting, in contrast, can cost from several hundred to several thousands of dollars a month, but is typically viewed as more reliable. Shared hosting is also considered to be more a commodity service.

“Up to now, many small and medium business customers have had to choose between reliability and price,” said Harper. “But as the Web becomes more mission critical to small businesses, the less reliable nature of shared hosting has become unacceptable.”

According to Interland, blueHALO architecture includes the following features:

  • Redundant firewalls for added security.
  • Load balancers designed to route traffic and guard against bottlenecks.
  • Multiple Web server arrays designed to ensure that a Web site keeps running even if a server fails.
  • Duplicated Network Attached Storage units designed to deliver data with incredible speed and instant recovery.
  • Near-Line Storage backup system for quick data recovery.

BlueHALO’s server management tools includes Code Manager, which runs on each account, monitoring code written for Web applications for common errors and reports possible performance improvements, and Process Manager, which is designed to isolate damaging resource-intensive processes and minimize impact to both individual accounts and the overall system.

Interland is offering a Service Level Agreement (SLA) of 99.99 percent uptime with a money-back guarantee. According to the company, it has engaged independent third-party testing company Keynote Systems to validate the reliability of the blueHALO architecture.

Interland said it is offering blueHALO shared hosting service immediately for either Windows or Linux servers, with pricing starting at $19.95 a month.

The company reports that it is developing migration tools that will allow existing customers to upgrade to blueHALO products. Interland said it expects the automated tools to be available within the next few months. Until then, customers have the option to manually move their Web sites onto the new platform.


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