Elastra Keeps Head in the Cloud

Elastra's Cloud Server is being built to design, deploy and manage robust application infrastructures over the Internet.

Elastra wants to take application infrastructures into the cloud, starting with the database.

The company March 25 announced the release of Elastra Cloud Server with an eye toward enabling enterprises, Web-based companies and software-as-a-service and independent software vendors to launch clustered database application systems more quickly in on-demand environments.


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"We're starting with relational databases, as they are such a critical building block and cornerstone of today's Web-based software applications," said Nate Smith, vice president of product management at Elastra. "We see databases as an extremely important first step in bringing enterprise-grade system architecture to the cloud environment. We will then quickly work to both enhance our database offering as well as to add the other key architectural components such as application servers, Web servers, ESB, memory caching, etc."

Elastra Cloud Server is a server-side design and run-time application, and provides clear templates for high-performance database clusters for MySQL, PostgreSQL and EnterpriseDB as part of its design tools.

"These cloud cluster templates allow companies to very quickly not only launch a single-node database on one virtual machine, but launch a high-performance database cluster in a matter of minutes," Smith said. "Additionally, we've enhanced these clusters with proxies, load balancing, seamless failover and automatic recovery to make them high-performance, highly available and production-ready out of the gate. Instead of spending time installing and configuring software on individual virtual machines, companies can launch a cluster immediately and then focus on their core competency-building the application that uses it."

The run-time functionality takes the design as an input, connects to the cloud computing platform, allocates the appropriate virtualized hardware resources, and installs the specified database and infrastructure software, as well as the instrumentation, metering and automated management software that enables that entire system to be scalable and maintainable, company officials said.

With this offering, Elastra is introducing two markup languages: One for specifying system design (ECML) and another for specifying system deployments (EDML). The languages are the first steps in creating the standards necessary to take virtualization beyond virtual machines and toward virtualizing entire application systems.

"Cloud computing conceptually makes a ton of sense, until you try to load and manage applications at scale," said Dana Gardner, an analyst with Interarbor Solutions. "As enterprises look to exploit cloud approaches on deployment, there are hurdles to overcome on both associating applications and services and in specifying the right infrastructure configurations. Elastra is providing the means for enterprises to cross the chasm to the cloud."