Home Contegix Floats Self-Service Cloud Tiered by Hypervisor

Contegix Floats Self-Service Cloud Tiered by Hypervisor

This week, St. Louis-based Contegix announced a new cloud platform called MiraCloud. What’s interesting about this platform is that Contegix is tiering its service by the hypervisor used.

For low-end customers, Contegix is offering the Convenience Class Cloud, which is based on KVM. The next tier, Business Class, is based on XenServer. The final Enterprise Class cloud is based on VMware ESXi.

With most cloud services, providers have standardized on a single hypervisor. Differentiating service based on hypervisor is an interesting approach. Of course the features differ slightly between the different classes as well. KVM customers don’t get fault tolerance, high availability or live migration. There’s also no SLA at all for KVM, so if uptime is a factor then customers will want to look to XenServer or ESXi. XenServer doesn’t get fault tolerance or storage motion features that are offered with VMware ESXi, but they do get live migration and HA features.

Naturally, the Enterprise customers are getting the Full Monty, with a 99.9% Uptime SLA, redundant primary storage, fault tolerant VMs, and all the other goodies.

Moving and Mixing

If you know what you want, then this is a pretty good setup. The one caveat is that if customers want to move between the tiers then they have to spin up new instances and re-configure services, etc. In other words, if you think you might require features with XenServer or ESXi, start on those tiers rather than starting with the least-expensive tiers.

The mixed tiers also give customers the option of hosting some services in cheaper tiers while keeping mission-critical or more resource-intensive services in Business or Enterprise Class. For instance, Contegix gives examples of running memcache services in the Convenience class, while sticking the Web heads in Business and the database in Enterprise.


MiraCloud pricing starts at $0.017 per hour for a Linux instance, with 256MB of RAM and 10GB of hard drive space. It also includes a fraction of a virtual CPU (vCPU). The vCPU is likely comparable with Amazon’s “compute unit.” For comparison, Amazon’s micro instances start at 613MB of memory and up to 2 EC2 compute units, and pricing starts at $0.02 per hour.

Business Class pricing starts at $0.019 per hour, and Enterprise Class starts at $0.057 per hour. Contegix also offers monthly pricing with bandwidth included, as well as offering Windows guests. At the top of the line, there’s the Enterprise Class instance that includes 32GB of RAM, 640GB of disk, and 8 vCPU for $3.43 an hour or $2,545 a month. That also includes 2TB of bandwidth.

It should be interesting to see how Contegix fares in the cloud market. There’s certainly call for regional players that can have a more direct relationship to customers.

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