Blog #3 of a 3 part series on The Economics of the Cloud, by Robert Darrow – Vice President of Operations at cloud provider, Peak (getcloud@ powered by peak .com) April 23, 2014

In part #1 of my blog The Economics of the Cloud Buyer Beware I discussed Cloud Economics Rule #1: AVOID CROWDED CLOUDS. Much like an airline overbooking its flights, many public cloud providers continue supplying seats to their cloud long after they should. They’re making a gamble that when demand peaks for some it will fall for others. Unfortunately, that formula doesn’t always pan out—not for airplane passengers and not for cloud users. Someone is bound to be inconvenienced. When it comes to mission-critical applications, that “inconvenience” can translate into lost revenues and damaged reputations

In part #2 of my blog Cloud Economics Look Under the Hood I discussed Rule #2: LOOK UNDER THE HOOD (OR, HOW TO COMPARE APPLES AND ORANGES). Cloud providers typically extract value from cloud services by exploiting server idleness/inefficiency by placing them on virtual machines and oversubscribing the underlying hardware. Workloads suffer at peak demand if this isn’t planned properly. You can’t compare cloud providers unless you have a clear understanding of their specs, performance, and utilization. For example, how leveraged is their compute? And, is infrastructure dedicated to each user? Commodity cloud providers’ stats might sound good, but there’s a high cost to pay for that low-cost cloud infrastructure. For this reason, private clouds often represent a far better value than public clouds for service providers and end customers alike.

And in my final blog, I present Rule#3: CONTROL YOUR ENVIRONMENT

Private clouds typically include dashboards for orchestration, provisioning, reporting, performance trending, and so on. But these tools rarely drill down to the hardware level to tell you just how leveraged the environment is. In order to control the environment and make good decisions for managing and provisioning VMs, seek out private clouds with transparency all the way down to the hardware level, and use native virtualization tools for evaluating, provisioning, and planning your upgrades. Only in this way can you attain the consistent performance necessary to support enterprise-class cloud services. Peak’s enterprise-class cloud infrastructure offers the same pay-as-you-go and scalability on-demand advantages inherent in any cloud service, but with the added value of consistent performance.


  • Infrastructure transparency – A Peak hosted private cloud allows complete visibility and control of the underlying infrastructure. It also provides native access to virtualization tools, including VMware vSphere for orchestration, provisioning, reporting, and performance trending and NetApp vServer for storage optimization.
  • Dedicated compute – By never over-allocating compute resources, we create an environment with zero chance of resource constraints. • Storage QoS – Peak owns and manages multiple petabytes of storage per cloud node (we are one of the 12 highest volume buyers of NetApp storage gear in the entire world). The size, scale, and volume of our storage environment is far larger than any company could afford on its own. Thus, Peak customers experience high storage QoS because we can spread, or stripe, their data across hundreds of storage devices, rack after rack after rack full. Like booking a business class seat rather than chartering a private plane, cloud computing gets you where you need to be more economically. In both cases, you expect to reach your destination safely and without disruption. Think of Peak’s private enterprise-class cloud as being bumped up to first class and telling all the other passengers to take another flight. You aren’t paying for a private plane, but you’re getting the same experience.


Channel the Cloud: It’s not just a tagline; it’s what we do. Peak. (formerly PeakColo) is an enterprise-class Infrastructure-as-a-Service cloud service provider to channel partners. With cloud nodes in six geographies across the United States and in Europe (Seattle, Denver, Chicago, New Jersey, New York, and the United Kingdom), Peak offers an environment that contains tens of thousands of virtual machines and multiple petabytes of storage for public, private, hybrid and disaster rvecovery solutions. Peak offers Cisco UCS FlexPod as a Service, is a Platinum-level NetApp Service Provider, VMware vCloud. Powered, and successfully completed Type II SSAE 16 and SOC 1 & 2 examinations.

Peak powers hundreds of service provider clouds nationwide; we can help match you with the ideal service provider to meet your needs. For more information, visit the Peak Web site at or call (855) 532-4734. You can also follow us on Twitter @peakcloud or connect on LinkedIn.