Last month I received a call from a person who introduced himself as an Electricity broker. He told who the cheapest provider in my locality is. He also gave me a discount for my current provider – the catch is I have to lock-in for 3 years. The offer was good and took it.
Yesterday somebody knocked my door. She was from a competitor. She vouched that their offer is better than one I locked myself in. Too late!
Why it is relevant here? Because we often compare IT service provision to “utility” like Electricity. Even for the simple utility like Electricity the comparison is not straight forward because there are peak and non-peak rates. Also, summer and winter rate are different.
In the service provision hierarchy, IaaS is in the bottom. In theory, it should be easy to compare the computing needs based on CPU speed, memory, disk space. However there are 25 other parameters that cloud the comparison. (pardon my pun!).
In this article I will attempt to compare the Infrastructure As A Service provision. I have chosen the providers who have datacenters in Australia and/or Asiapac region.
I inspiration is from the following article which compares US providers.
The above comparison has 19 parameters. In my comparison, I have simplified the parameters to 6. The parameters are:
Service Desk support: Does the service provider have 24*7 service desk? Many of the providers fulfill this criteria. However, take it with a pinch of salt. I was told that a business that used a leading IaaS provider in Australia moved out because the call waiting was frustrating for them.
Availability and Uptime guarantee: Some providers have different packages varying from 99% to 99.995%. One provider guarantees 100% availability.
Self-service portal: The ability to spawn and configure VM without human intervention.
Datacenter location: Majority of the providers I listed have datacenters in Australia.
Security and Compliance: All the providers have mentioned about physical security and firewall. Many providers have ISO/IEC 27000 certification.
Indicative price: This is a average, indicative monthly price for 1 cpu, 2 GB Ram,20 GB disk, 20 GB internet). Not all providers have the same unit which makes the comparison difficult. The indicative cost does not include software platform (windows).
Unfortunately major players like Optus and Fujitsu do not publish their rates. In my view, it is against the spirit of cloud computing.
The lowest average cost is quoted by iiNet. ($29/month). They provide telephone support only during business hours. Telstra is the most expensive ($220/month)
ZettaGrid offers free testing. You can check the performance before committing.
Instacompute is the only provider that quotes availability guarantee in monthly basis.
Rackspace guarantees is 100% availability. Their focus on “fanatic support” is good.
Here is the comparison table.
|Service Provider||Service Desk Support(24*7)||Availability/Uptime Guarantee||Self-Service Portal||Datacenter Location||Security||Indicative Price (1 CPU, 2 GB Ram, 20 GB disk, 20 GB internet)|
|Anittel||9 to 5:30 pm||n/a||n/a||Austraia||n/a||n/a|
|ASG Group Cloud Service||n/a||Australia||n/a||n/a|
|CSC||n/a||99% to 99.95%||USA||inhouse||n/a|
|Fujitsu Cloud Services||n/a||upto 99.999%||Australia||ISO/IEC 27001, ISO/IEC 14001||n/a|
|iiNet||Monday to Friday 7am to 5pm (WST)||99.9%||Australia||inhouse||$29|
|infoplex||99.99%||n/a||Australia, Hongkong, Singapore||ISO/IEC 27001||$80|
|Instacompute – Tata communications||99.95% MONTHLY uptime||India, Singapore||ISO/IEC 27000||USD 79|
|Macquarie Telecom||99.9% per month||AUSTRALIA||ISO 27001 , AS7799 (ISO 17799)||n/a|
|Optus PowerOn||Australia||ISO/IEC 27001||n/a|
|Rackspace||100%||Hongkong (+ others)||different security packages available (additional cost?)||$87.60|
|Telstra||99.9% of the service year||Australia||in-house security||$220|
|TheCloud||n/a||New Zeland||n/a||NZ 187|
|ZettaGrid||99.9%||Australia||Propreitory 3 tier policy||$79|
Disclaimer: The above comparison is provided based on the publicly available data on Sept 2012. The provider can change the pricing and other parameters any time without notice. The reader needs to verify the accuracy of data.
Here is the list of providers:
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