Upcoming changes in the City Cloud service

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We would like to thank all of our users for the feedback you have given us since the launch of City Cloud back in November 2009. We have listened to you and now it´s time for the biggest update in the history of City Cloud!

On Monday the 28th of June between 00:01 and 06:00 the Cloud Computing service, City Cloud, will go through some important changes in order to improve our service.

The changes are made in the architecture to improve stability and performance. The update will also improve other areas such as compatibility. New and updated Operating Systems will soon be available as images within the service.

What will be launched

  • Performance and stability enhancements
    We are doing a total rework of the Storage subsystem providing storage space for all City Cloud customers. The new system will provide much better performance and with that comes better reliability. Also we switch from the Xen hypervisor to using KVM instead which will also improve performance.
  • Compatibility
    The switch from Xen to KVM also means we’ll be able to provide a wider range of OS images. Immediately after the upgrade we will start upgrading OS versions (for example to Windows 2008 r2 and Ubuntu 10.04).
  • New Operating Systems
    Also completely new images will be provided shortly after the upgrade. For example FreeBSD and NetBSD.
  • User Interface upgrades
    Providing a number of useful features for customers including the ability to add and remove extra storage devices to existing VMs, improvements in the listing of running VMs in the UI, control of more advanced tunables for each VM, and a range of other improvements.

What´s been keeping us busy

  • Migration to ZFS
    The new storage system is based on ZFS which provides lots of features that are useful in this environment. For example deduplication means that the available storage will be used more efficiently, block checksums makes detection and correction of silent data corruption possible and the I/O performance will also get a significant boost.
  • Switch from Xen to KVM
    As mentioned above this will widen the range of Operating system images we’ll be able to provide. Also it will significantly improve network performance. The user interface, APIs and such will not be changed due to the switch so from a customer perspective everything will work as before, only better.
  • Backup service
    We already have backups for disaster recovery, but are also working on a customer administered file backup system enabling users to install a small client in the VM and configure their backup needs and pay per megabyte. We will get back to you with more information on this.
  • Firewall service
    Today customers requiring  firewalling of their services can use the built in firewall of the operating system of the VM. We are working on a more centrally administered firewall service for all City Cloud customers providing simple firewall configuration. We will get back to you with more information on this as well.