BitNami is not a cloud provider, but instead makes managing applications on Amazon’s Web Services much, much easier. BitNami Cloud Hosting provides one-click deployment for more than 30 applications, the ability to scale applications automatically, automatic backups and multi-account management.
BitNami Cloud Hosting offers the ability to run more than one application per server on AWS. Supported applications include SugarCRM, Alfresco, Redmine, WordPress, Drupal, Mantis and many more. Customers can also run supported base stacks on top of Ubuntu Linux 10.04 LTS.
With the August 9th update, BitNami Cloud Hosting now has support for OpenID so you don’t need to create yet another account to work with BitNami cloud hosting. Sign in using Twitter, GitHub or Google and don’t worry about a new account. (The GitHub combination seems especially useful.)
If you do have a separate password and username for BitNami Cloud Hosting, you can now reset the password if you’ve forgotten it. Sort of surprising that the service didn’t have this before (or maybe I’m the only one that forgets passwords that often) but they’ve got it now. Speaking of passwords, if you don’t specify a password when launching a new service, one is created randomly. This means you can’t launch a service using BitNami with the default password for one of the apps, which is a good thing.
The feature I particularly like about this update is the Free Tier Eligibility feedback and email notifications. BitNami Cloud Hosting now provides a visual feedback that indicates whether a new server would qualify for Amazon’s free usage tier or not. Even better, you’ll get an email each time you launch a server that includes the server specs and estimated costs and an email every week with the servers your running currently. Good stuff for developers that might be playing around with a server and forget that they’ve launched it.
One of the complaints I’ve heard most frequently about AWS (aside from outages, of course) is the complexity of pricing and difficulty in estimating costs at first. Providing tools to smooth over the rough spots here should make BitNami very popular indeed.