INAP IS NOW HORIZONIQ.
Click here to LEARN more.

Oct 30, 2013

Internap is buying iWeb!

INAP

Internap is buying iWebIt’s been a busy last few months, punctuated by secret off-site meetings, i-banker code words, and lots of short hop flights between NYC and Montreal.

The news is finally out. As of a few hours ago — Internap is buying iWeb!

I’m super excited about the announcement and the implications for the combined company, although it’s really weird being on the other side of the table this time around! (Just about two years ago, Internap acquired Voxel, the company I founded back in 1999.)

We have been undergoing a transformation at Internap over the last few years. Acquiring Voxel was part of the foundation for that story. Today’s iWeb acquisition accelerates things significantly, and positions us to round the corner as a different animal altogether – a global IT infrastructure services company.

We are shedding our telco roots.

iWeb has built a truly global (50% of revenue outside North America) company, with a hyper-localized footprint in Montreal, Canada. They have a very sophisticated online marketing machine, and most of their demand is generated from their website. Internap has a truly global footprint, but most of our revenue comes from the domestic market. We have a big enterprise sales force that targets each local market; almost nothing is sold off our website.

See the obvious fit here?

iWeb recently chose to build out their back office data center automation platform with Ubersmith – Internap’s purpose-built platform. During my time working on iWeb’s Ubersmith implementation, it became clear to me we were dealing with an organization that really ‘gets hosting and cloud’. There is a similar story of commonality with OpenStack – something key to the future strategy of both companies. iWeb is punching above their weight already (#24 contributor in the community), and we are both hard at work deploying OpenStack under the hoods of our respective cloud offerings.

By joining forces, we should be able to increase velocity in these two key areas and, hopefully, work towards a single consolidated infrastructure platform.

Oh, and iWeb guys and gals: Don’t worry too much about these Internap people. They aren’t that bad; they just like wearing suits. The passion and culture of iWeb (as originally instilled by founders Eric and Martin and as carried on by folks like Christian and Cyrille) is one of your biggest assets. We absolutely recognize that. Not messing that up is really important to us, and to me personally.

Things are certainly going to get interesting!

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

INAP

Read More
Aug 29, 2013

How agile is your hosting API?

INAP

At Internap, we really believe in the power of APIs.

APIs give developers the ability to create things that we can’t even imagine. They use our API to interact with our infrastructure, interact with our staff and interact with their servers on a programmatic basis.

Our API is very complete – it’s not just about the infrastructure that you manage – you can actually pay your bill using the API, or file a support ticket using the API – that means you can integrate your application directly into our API programmatically (tweet this). Potentially, your server could decide that it’s overloaded and spin up more servers. It could notice a problem with one of your applications and open a support ticket for us to go and take a look.

Having a single API makes it easier to deploy the right kind of resources for any need, without having to integrate with multiple different vendors’ APIs. This means less time integrating and coding and more time focusing on the applications running on the platform.

Our API is really powerful – it’s open, it’s licensed under the creative commons and we have many toolkits available in a variety of languages to help get you started.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

INAP

Read More
Aug 6, 2013

Customer Spotlight: Onavo improves performance and reduces costs with bare-metal cloud

Ansley Kilgore

Onavo reduces costs with bare-metal cloudAs the expert in mobile data savings, Onavo creates a suite of award-winning data utility apps that help users manage their mobile data usage, protect themselves from malware and save money. With more than one million users around the world, Onavo relies on high network speed and superior performance to provide the best quality experience for consumers.

In this customer spotlight, Galed Friedmann, Head of Operations at Onavo, discusses how the move to bare-metal servers allowed them to increase performance without sacrificing the automation and flexibility of the cloud.

Q: When you started researching solutions, what were your requirements?

A: To provide quality service to our growing customer base, we needed high network speed and reliable server performance with a stringent SLA for guaranteed uptime. We also required a predictable cost approach to keep expenses under control.

Internap’s bare-metal cloud helped us meet network and performance goals using dedicated physical servers that could be scaled up and down like a traditional virtual cloud based on workload needs. We utilize bare metal in Internap’s data center locations in New York and Amsterdam to support our global users, and can provision physical servers within 24 hours in most cases using Internap’s self-service customer portal.

Q: What changes have you noticed since the move to bare-metal servers?

A: Our move from a virtual cloud environment to dedicated physical servers has led to a boost in performance. Bare-metal servers with no virtualization layer allow us to take advantage of the full processing capacity of the physical servers, which let us reduce our overall server count. With better performance and more control over our server usage, costs are more predictable.

Also, our NOC is now able to focus on business-critical issues instead of infrastructure maintenance and troubleshooting. We have fewer unexpected outages and less need for constant network monitoring, which makes it easier to provide customers with fast, reliable access to their mobile data applications.
Internap’s SLA supports 100% network availability across multiple networks, which takes this additional burden off our support personnel.

We are regularly testing, developing and adding new products, and the ability to self-provision new physical servers and delete instances when finished gives us the flexibility we need. As our business grows, it’s important for us to have these automation capabilities along with better performance.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More
Jul 2, 2013

Three keys to success for online game developers

Ansley Kilgore

success for online game developersFor game developers and publishers, launching a new game into the market and creating loyal fans takes a lot of work. Whether you are an established gaming company or a new publisher entering the highly-competitive marketplace, having the right IT Infrastructure in place is critical. Your game must deliver the availability, performance and scale that online gamers have come to expect on their digital quests. Internap solutions help set game developers up for success by providing the right environment for testing, development and deployment of online games.

High-performance cloud services
When the Massachusetts Digital Games Institute (MassDigi) needed a server to host their new online game, Internap’s AgileCLOUD provided a cost-effective way to spin up virtual servers that could support their development and collaboration needs. MassDigi was able to continuously test their online game with live users, and scale dynamically up to thousands of players as needed. With cloud hosting solutions, game developers have more flexibility to test, develop and deploy without worrying about the limitations of technology.

Performance
When introducing new games into the market, speed and performance are key aspects of high-quality game delivery. No matter how awesome your game may be, users will abandon it if there is too much latency. With route-optimized Performance IPTM, Infinite Game Publishing (IGP) can provide gamers with a flawless online experience during the initial game launch and beyond. Meeting the expectations of online gamers is the first step to creating a loyal customer base. This is especially important in the free-to-play revenue model, which is less predictable than a subscription-based model.

Hybrid infrastructure
Gaming companies that use Internap services have the ability to mix and match different infrastructure offerings, including public and private cloud, bare-metal, managed hosting and colocation. As the gaming industry continues to grow and more businesses enter the market, the successful gaming publishers will be those who can seamlessly deliver their game to end users with low latency, high availability and high performance. The ability to establish and maintain your competitive edge depends on having the right gaming infrastructure in place.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More
Jan 10, 2013

5 Tips for managing your IT Infrastructure service provider relationship

INAP

IT Infrastructure service provider relationshipIdeally, your IT Infrastructure service provider is an extension of your company, reflecting the high quality and focus that you expect from your own organization and employees.  These types of relationships require a concerted effort by all parties and tend to evolve over time.

To be sure, it is time well spent because key benefits include better alignment between your organization’s needs and the service it receives. It allows your service provider to identify the best options for supporting your corporate goals, evaluating trade-offs, and making solid recommendations.

Begin with these 5 tips to establish and maintain a rewarding strategic relationship with your provider.

  1. Share your corporate vision and objectives with your provider representative.  Identify any critical measures or business fundamental metrics related to infrastructure such as percent up-time, latency limits, response time, etc.
  2. Determine funding availability and budgetary constraints.  Identify any data or financial analysis that is required to justify expenditure.
  3. Document and communicate your requirements in a clear and specific manner.  Be sure to include all requirements:  tangible and intangible, technical and business.
  4. Identify any concerns or risk factors that are unacceptable.  This may include physical location concerns based on geographical conditions, or security arrangements.
  5. Read and understand the Service Level Agreement (SLA) and supporting documentation.  Pay attention to what is required of you as well as what is required of the service provider.

Clearly, whether your needs include colocation,  managed hosting, cloud or a hybrid mix of services, these tips for managing your relationship will steer you in the right direction.

For more information, check out our ebook, The Colocation Buyer’s Guide.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

INAP

Read More
Jan 9, 2013

Atlanta Data Center Achieves Green Globes Certification

Ansley Kilgore

What comes to mind when you think of Atlanta, Georgia? Maybe it’s the 1996 Olympic Games, the home of Coca-Cola or the captivating Georgia Aquarium.  Or maybe it brings to mind one of the best music and art scenes in the South, or the fact that more than 70 street names contain the word “Peachtree.” But wait, there’s more—did you know that Atlanta also has the fourth largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the U.S.?

As a major business and technology hub, Atlanta has a high demand for efficient, secure colocation and hosting services. While performance is always top of mind, the local business community also has an opportunity to minimize their environmental impact when evaluating the best Atlanta colocation and data center solutions for their organization.

Internap’s Atlanta Data Center is now the first public data center in Georgia to achieve Green Globes® certification.  This provides Atlanta businesses with the best of both worlds – a scalable, flexible data center with hybridization options, as well as the knowledge that the facility incorporates sustainable green design techniques. This recent accolade marks Internap’s fourth successful Green Globes certification and demonstrates a commitment to environmental responsibility.

So the next time you’re drinking a Coke on Peachtree Street, think about the technology backbone that runs this town. Take a video tour of our recently expanded Atlanta data center to learn more. Explore our Atlanta colocation and data center offerings.

Our Atlanta data centers are conveniently located in the Atlanta metro area:

 

  • Flagship Downtown Atlanta Data Center
    250 Williams Street NW
    Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Atlanta POP
    1033 Jefferson Street NW
    Atlanta, GA 30318
  • Atlanta POP
    56 Marietta Street NW
    Atlanta, GA 30303

More About Our Flagship Atlanta Data Center

Our flagship Atlanta data center is located at 250 Williams Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30303. This Atlanta colocation data center connects to Dallas and Washington, D.C. data centers via our reliable, high-performing backbone. Our carrier-neutral, SOC 2 Type II Atlanta data center market facilities are concurrently maintainable, energy efficient and support high-power density environments of 20+ kW per rack. If you need colocation Atlanta services, or other data center solutions in the Atlanta metro area, contact us.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More
Dec 14, 2012

Hi-Rez Studios achieves performance and platform flexibility

Ansley Kilgore

How do online game developers make sure their players get the best user experience possible? Challenges such as latency, scalability and increased competition within the gaming industry can have an adverse effect on player retention and the number of daily active users.


Hi-Rez Studios, Inc., a recent winner of the TAG Excalibur Award, relies on Internap’s Performance IP, cloud hosting and Content Delivery Network (CDN) services to address these challenges. As an independent studio that creates online interactive entertainment, they have successfully launched two massively multiplayer online games worldwide while scaling seamlessly to support traffic growth from 100 gigabits per year to 1.6+ petabytes per month.

Learn more about how Hi-Rez Studios drives player loyalty and stays competitive with a high-speed scalable IT Infrastructure.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More
Oct 4, 2012

Five trends to watch for content owners: HTML5 versus Flash

Ansley Kilgore

HTML5 versus FlashThis is the final segment of a five-part series on trends for content owners. Catch up on the rest of the trends here.

In November of last year, Adobe confirmed what the news analysts had been predicting for months: Adobe was discontinuing its development of mobile browser Flash in favor of HTML5.  It’s true — combined with Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and JavaScript, HTML5 provides excellent design control (particularly gradient and masking flexibility) and can re-flow at multiple screen sizes. These features provide huge advantages for publishers given the explosive growth of the tablet and smart phone markets. HTML5 will also natively support audio, video and other elements currently supported by plug-ins like Flash, although not all video issues are yet resolved.

The lack of maturity of HTML5 means Flash will live on as a staple in many website and online application developers’ tool kits for some time. Creative tools for HTML5 like Adobe’s Edge aren’t fully mature and seamless cross-browser HTML5 support still requires lots of testing and debugging. As for Microsoft’s Silverlight, it should shortly disappear altogether except for very limited internal enterprise applications intended solely for Internet Explorer.

How are content owners responding?

In addition to enabling multi-device compatibility, the emergence of HTML5 as the go-to programming language for all devices will bring with it several advantages. First, without plug-in license fees, interactive and rich media content is becoming cheaper to produce. It is also improving the searchability of content because it resides natively in the browser. Media companies are responding by upgrading their HTML5 knowledge base — organic or otherwise. In January 2012, the Financial Times acquired London-based application development firm, Assanka, which built an HTML5 web application for the publisher. Game Closure, a small start-up developer of an HTML5 game authoring platform, reportedly turned down hefty acquisition offers from Zynga earlier this year.

While digital publishers are working to accelerate their development of HTML5 programming expertise and associated content deployment to take advantage of cost and revenue opportunities, they are keeping their toe in the Flash plug-in pool. At least in the near term, Flash continues to be a valuable programming tool to address complex design objectives. Infrastructure platforms such as private or custom cloud computing services are cost-effective options to test out new content deployments, HTML5 or otherwise. Global content delivery networks and route-optimized IP services continue to be critical technologies that ensure mobile content is delivered reliably to the end users no matter where they are in the world.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More
Oct 2, 2012

Five trends to watch for content owners: Mobile and the demise of the content schedule

Ansley Kilgore

managed hostingThis is week four of a five-part series on trends for content owners. Catch up on the rest of the trends here.

Humans are creatures of habit. We are hard wired to build routines and establish schedules, even subconsciously. It’s nice to know that on Thursday night at 9:30 PM ET you can sit down, turn on your television and see the first run of Parks and Recreation. Deloitte echoed these tendencies by recently predicting that in 2012, 95% of television programs would be viewed within 24 hours of broadcast.

But anyone who has used a DVR can attest to the satisfaction of not only replaying that episode you missed but also avoiding irritating commercials. In several major TV markets, DVR penetration rates are already above 50%. Although not officially classified as such, tablets and smartphones are in many ways, just portable DVRs. These devices enhance content replay by adding a view-anywhere element (dubbed “place shifting”) to the mix.

Music streaming services like Rhapsody and Spotify recognized this value to consumers early on by rolling out mobile versions of their streaming applications. Consumers quickly signaled they were willing to pay for this convenience. Spotify’s introduction of its mobile product drove 2x conversion ratio from free to paying subscribers.

Online publishers face a similar trend. According to Pocket, the developer of the Read It Later I/OS app that allows users to tag content they wish to read later, mobile users defer reading content at much higher rates than PC users. Regardless of when the news was published within a particular day, iPhone and iPad users shifted reading times back to the most convenient times for them — during breakfast, the morning and afternoon commutes, and right before bed.

How are content owners responding?

Mobile is hastening the move away from traditional viewing schedules. This changing landscape is driving publishers and advertisers to carefully consider when and where the user interacts with content. To get a fuller picture of the media consumer, content owners are analyzing device and location-based information as well as more traditional demographic and time-based metrics. It follows that the emergence of mobile payment services like Square and Google Wallet present huge monetization possibilities for content owners that understand where their media are consumed.

From an IT Infrastructure perspective, digital publishers that want to enhance their audience targeting are looking for service providers that have a full range of capabilities. In addition to having public cloud, managed hosting and enterprise-class colocation to effectively manage and store large location-based and customer-specific media libraries, content owners are also looking for IT vendors to provide native content delivery network capabilities that include geo-fencing and deep analytics to round out their content targeting requirements.

Stay tuned for our last trend on the list next week: HMTL5 versus Flash. While you wait, check out how AudienceScience leverages IT Infrastructure to deliver online advertising solutions.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More
Jul 12, 2012

Does the cloud measure up for high performance?

Ansley Kilgore

Does the cloud measure up for high performance?Throughout our 15+ years in the delivery and IT Infrastructure services business, Internap has relentlessly focused on providing the highest performing services to our customers. In fact, our accelerated IP solutions are known the world over for consistently delivering market-leading performance and uptime. Now, with the introduction of our public cloud and dedicated hosting service we’ve added instant scalability and automated provisioning (acquired in January as part of Voxel’s VoxSTRUCTURE platform and now integrated into our performance datacenters) to our arsenal of high-performance hosting solutions. From “Layer 0” (colocation) to custom hosting deployments and dedicated hosting to public and provide cloud, Internap leads in high-performance IT solutions.

In the coming weeks and months you’ll hear us talk about this infrastructure tool set as a key differentiator — we leverage our wide platform, consultative engagement process and powerful automation to ensure our customers achieve the best possible “price to performance” ratios in the industry.

Internap Cloud Platform Measurement

Being focused on performance means that we’re constantly finding ways to measure and improve what we deliver to our customers. That’s harder than it sounds. Replicating “real world” usage is more of an art than a science, and we participate in every 3rd party performance measurement system we can find! A few months ago, right as we rolled out our cloud and dedicated hosting platform to five global locations (three in the US, one in Europe and one in Asia), we started working with Cedexis, a company similarly focused on high-performance delivery that leverages multi-platform (cloud/content delivery network) strategies for its customers.

Cedexis engaged with Internap to add its five global cloud locations to its performance-monitoring platform, an impressive technology stack (dubbed “Radar”) that leverages real users’ browsers to obtain reliable, actionable metrics. This is particularly important as many performance test methodologies are severely flawed and rely on either backbone-specific measurements or end users installing toolbars or other spyware infectected apps, which naturally jades what kind of results you get back. You can read more about Cedexis’ Radar here.

Overall, the experience has been great and the results insightful — not actionable, but more interesting and validating to our engineering teams who are focused on both the network and compute aspects of high-performance cloud platforms.

The Results

Cloud Providers Average ResponseCedexis measures both performance (primarily a response time metric) and quality (based on error rates of requests). The Internap public cloud (still dubbed “VoxCLOUD” for now!) performed well across the board, with our New York, NY location earning the top Performance and Quality Rankings and our other locations filling nicely in the top 10:

Rank
Performance Ranking
Quality Ranking (Errors)
1 VoxCLOUD NY VoxCLOUD NY
2 EC2 East VoxCLOUD TX
3 VoxCLOUD TX Rackspace Cloud
4 Rackspace Cloud EC2 East
5 Azure North EC2 West
6 Azure South VoxCLOUD CA
7 VoxCLOUD CA VoxCLOUD AMS
8 GoGrid CloudSigma EU
9 Cloud Sigma Phoenix NAP
10 EC2 West GoGrid

 

MIRO-Enabled Cloud — Only from Internap

By no means is the Cedexis measurement comprehensive or absolute — but it’s a strong indication of the performance of Internap’s cloud and delivery solutions. But what makes our cloud perform so much better than Amazon’s? Or Rackspace’s? Did we buy the latest generation processors (yes!) or invest in the best datacenters (that too!). But in the end, it’s the network that affects cloud performance the most — and we’ve spent a decade and a half perfecting our Managed Internet Route Optimizer™ (MIRO) delivery technology to optimize, improve and scale Internet delivery. As the world moves more of its applications into the cloud, the network that delivers the content and application stack to the end user becomes even more critical.

At Internap, we’ll continue to develop cutting-edge and scalable cloud technologies, improve our price-to-performance ratio and offer higher levels of service to our customers. We trust that this will reflect in the experiences of our customers, and we’ll be watching 3rd party measurements, such as those from Cedexis, as key indicators of our performance position in the marketplace.

Need help choosing which cloud is right for you? Check out our Cloud Hosting Buyer’s Guide for more information.

Explore HorizonIQ
Bare Metal

LEARN MORE

About Author

Ansley Kilgore

Read More