Ravello helps shift software development and testing to public cloud

Cloud virtualization startup brings application portability at an hourly rate

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The process of creating replicas of production environments for complex multi-VM applications can be extremely cumbersome, but Ravello helps automate the infrastructure so developers have self-service access to spin up these replicas with a single click.

"Testing usually comes with bursty workloads, and when that happens, the process is often hindered by capacity limitations that result in extensive waiting times in the queue," Thadani said. "In these situations, it doesn't make economic sense for enterprises to build internal datacenter capacity for peak usage, since on average, resource utilization may be as low as 1 percent."

Thadani went on to say that "the public cloud is a promising solution -- however, the environment is very different so it isn't a helpful resource. This is where Ravello comes into play -- allowing enterprises ... to seamlessly use any leading cloud provider to develop and test their existing on-premise applications without having to make any changes to the existing VMs."

Since the February launch of Ravello's public beta, there have been more than 2,000 enterprise users that have replicated more than 30,000 applications into the public cloud. Ravello's application deployment tool helped ScanCafe, a photo digitization service provider based in California, with its software development and testing processes. The company said it was essentially prioritizing agility and rolling out code as fast as it could -- without having the infrastructure or automation needed in order to fully test its applications. With Ravello, the company said, it no longer needs to compromise and it is able to take applications to market much faster and with better quality.

A ScanCafe spokesperson said one of the main benefits from the product was better accountability within its development team because everyone was able to receive their own environment.

Ravello's pricing is as interesting as its technology. Ravello offers an application-centric, usage-based pricing model, so rather than pay per VM, a customer ends up paying per application on a per-hour basis. Pricing does fluctuate and is based on three factors: the application's size, complexity, and optimization criteria (either "cost optimized" or "performance optimized").

According to Ravello, pricing starts as low as 14 cents per hour for 2vCPU and 4GB of RAM for application compute, a figure that includes the cost of the underlying public cloud used by Ravello's software-as-a-service application. At first glance, this initial pricing looks fairly inexpensive, but as an environment grows in size, resource usage, and complexity, things won't remain that cheap. It is important to keep an eye on the cost.

The company does provide an online pricing tool that should provide insight.

This article, "Ravello helps shift software development and testing to public cloud," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in virtualization and cloud computing at InfoWorld.com.

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