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ICONZ Virtual Colocation review

Posted on 30-Mar-2008 11:58 by M Freitas | Filed under: Reviews


A few weeks ago I posted a blog entry with a speedtest screenshot showing the connection speed I was getting out of a new service ICONZ was testing - and I was lucky to be invited to try.

Their service is now live and I can write a bit more about it. The ICONZ Virtual Colocation is now available for companies wanting to quickly deploy servers but do not need or want to invest in hardware.

ICONZ has built its Virtual Colocation platform using HP C-7000 C-class Blade chassis, HP BL-460 half height Blades connected to an HP EVA 41000 Series SAN. And this is what you get on the virtual machine:



ICONZ is using VMware Virtual Infrastructure 3 Enterprise to provide the server virtualization. For all effects you will interact with your virtual machine as you would with a real machine - a full remote software KVM features CD-ROM and floppy mapping, and more. And you have full control on the state of your machine through its VMware Virtual Infrastructure Client software.





In my tests I had Windows Server 2003 running on the standard deployment - 1GB RAM, 20 GB HDD and 10 GB international traffic. Instead of using their supplied software KVM I immediately installed LogMeIn and Hamachi so that I could have instant access from home and from the Geekzone server.

You are not of course limited to Windows on your virtual machine. ICONZ will support Debian and Ubuntu Server as well, but FreeBSD is known to be compatible with this environment.

The configuration surprised me with its responsiveness and abillity to cope with instant loads - I realoded the Geekzone database (Microsoft SQL 2005) a few times from backup files and it was almost like instant restore. I would be interested in having SQL mirror setup between the virtual server and the Geekzone server to test the update speeds, because this would be the perfect always-on, instant backup solution.

Below are the results of PassMark PerformanceTest for both the ICONZ Virtual Colocation server and the actual Geekzone server:



In terms of pricing you get the standard configuration (1GB RAM, 20 GB HDD, 10 GB international traffic) for $280 a month. Extra HDD space and data traffic can be purchased in blocks. Not necessarily the cheapest co-location option, but for organisations this can be a good alternative to spending CAPEX.


Pros
Quick deployment
Easy management
Additional resources can be added
Fast connectivity

Cons
Cost for small organisation



More information: http://www.iconz.co.nz/virtual/...