Introducing the gBlock™ Cloud 2.0: What’s Improved in the Green House Data Cloud

Written by Josh Larsen on Friday, July 28th 2017 — Categories: Cloud Hosting, Cloud Storage, Hybrid Cloud, Cloud Hosting, Cloud Storage, VMware, Product Information

We’ve been cloud-native since the beginning, offering VMware-powered virtual hosting for almost ten years. In fact, our very first EMC backend storage array is now sitting in the lobby of our Cheyenne headquarters.

Of course, we couldn’t stay stagnant with our cloud offerings (you’d notice if that old storage array was still powering your cloud, trust us). The hardware, software, and facilities powering the gBlock cloud have undergone a variety of upgrades over the past decade, and the latest set is big enough for us to dub it officially the gBlock Cloud 2.0.

So what’s new in the Green House Data cloud? Let’s dive into the benefits customers can receive when the migrate to this new and improved platform.

upgraded cloud hosting from Green House Data

gBlock 4000 Storage Tier

Going beyond our existing gBlock 500, 1000, and 2000 performance tiers, the gBlock 4000 block storage level enables  super fast storage, sustainable at or above 4,000 IOPs. Newly procured storage arrays and efficient architecture guarantee fast access to any data stored in the cloud.

 

Upgraded Virtual Machine Hosts

We’ve added a slew of new Intel-based compute host servers to the gBlock Cloud pool. The latest and greatest servers translate to faster virtual CPU processing for our customers, as well as improved reliability and compatibility with future software releases.

 

Consolidated Management of Virtual Data Centers

Previously, if you had multiple tiers of storage (like gBlock 500 for some virtual machines that required lower performance, and gBlock 2000 for your higher requirement VMs), you would have to manage them under multiple virtual data centers in the gBlock Cloud web portal.

With gBlock Cloud 2.0, you can manage all of your virtualized assets from a single pane, regardless of the storage tier, helping to streamline daily administration for you and your staff.

 

Use of Multiple Storage Tiers for Any VM

Each virtual machine was limited to a single gBlock storage tier in our previous cloud design, so if you had a VM that sometimes needed faster storage, you would have to power off and move the entire virtual machine to a faster storage tier. This often meant you couldn’t access previously stored files without some effort and down time.

We’ve added per-disk storage profiles, so each VM can span across multiple storage tiers. Need to take advantage of your gBlock 2000 storage for a particular dataset? Now you can use the faster gBlock 2000 or 4000 tiers for specific files, while leaving your logs and OS disk on the less expensive gBlock 500 or 1000 tier, all without provisioning a different machine (or logging into a different virtual data center, as detailed above.)

 

Live VM Migration

Virtual machines can now be moved between servers and storage tiers even while they are running. If you expect downtime on a server, want to move a workload, or upgrade to a faster storage tier for an anticipated usage spike, you can now do so without pausing or powering down your VM.

 

Live Addition of vApps to Catalog 

Similarly to the above migration feature, under gBlock Cloud 2.0 users have the ability to clone or copy a vApp to a catalog while their VM is running, reducing service interruptions.

 

Faster VM Template Provisioning

Our platform and server updates also translate into improved performance when provisioning virtual machines from your existing templates. No more twiddling your thumbs waiting for a VM to spin up from a template — it’ll be powered on a ready before you know it.

 

Improved Web Client

The cloud customer portal has been improved in several ways. This update includes better browser console support, avoiding frustration when launching a console to access your VM desktop or server GUI. Now you can take full advantage of OS setting configuration and running applications without having to leave the web client and log in with another method.

We’ve also improved redundancy for the front-end web interface, so you’re less likely to run into performance issues or downtime when using the web client.

 

While the focus is clearly on storage improvements, taken as a whole these upgrades mark a new and improved gBlock Cloud that everyone here in Cloud Services is very excited to roll out.

Existing cloud customers will not automatically be migrated to the gBlock Cloud 2.0. This environment is limited to our Cheyenne cloud data center and we are offering self-service, partially assisted, and fully managed migrations for those clients who wish to migrate their VMs to take advantage of these new features and upgraded hardware.

If you are an existing customer and wish to explore your options with gBlock Cloud 2.0, please contact us or reach out directly to your dedicated account manager for more information. If you’re preparing your first cloud deployment or are a new Green House Data cloud customer, you can launch in the gBlock Cloud 2.0 starting today. 


Posted by Senior Cloud Technologist Josh Larsen

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