Object Storage 101

OS101 logoWith the massive amount of growth in unstructured data Canadian organizations are seeing as a result of mega trends like Big Data, the Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine to Machine communications (M2M,) a reliable, redundant and scalable storage medium is required to handle it. Object storage is the perfect solution for many storage applications for unstructured data.

This whitepaper outlines 

  • What is Object Storage?
  • Why Object Storage?
  • Object Storage benefits
  • What problems does Object Storage solve?
  • Trends in object storage
  • Popular Use Cases


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Simplify the Cloud with Cloud-A & Cloud 66 Webinar Video

Simplify the Cloud Webinar Deck

Recently we put on a webinar with our partner Cloud 66 titled: Simplify the Cloud with Cloud-A and Cloud 66. In the webinar we discussed the struggles we are seeing in the industry with the lack of operations support for developers, and the requirements of developers to bring cutting edge software to market quickly. We discussed how Cloud-A’s partnership with Cloud 66 allows Cloud-A users to automate the deployment and management of their applications on Cloud-A’s cloud infrastructure. Khash Sajadi, co-founder and CEO of Cloud 66 discussed the what, the why and the how of containers, and why they are valuable to both ops and dev teams. Khash also performed a live demo of Cloud 66’s functionality.

Check out the webinar video below.

Simplify the Cloud with Cloud-A & Cloud 66 Webinar from Cloud-A on Vimeo.

Baystream, Cloud-A partner, announce Canadian Cloud Storage-as-a-Service

For immediate release



Halifax, NS – June 5, 2015 – Cloud-A Computing Inc. a leading Canadian OpenStack Public Cloud provider, and Baystream, a Montreal based, cloud systems integrator firm, announced today a strategic partnership that will see Baystream sell and implement cloud storage-as-a-service systems based on CTERA Networks technology married to Baystream’ s authentication and content management Systems on Cloud-A’s public cloud infrastructure.

The partnership will provide Canadian enterprises who are struggling with data management and data security challenges, with a Canadian owned and Canadian operated solution backed by Cloud-A’s enterprise grade compute and redundant Bulk Storage products. Baystream has already begun onboarding clients onto the new platform and have achieved phenomenal performance results.

Cloud-A is exactly what we have been looking for; we needed a Canadian owned and operated, high quality IAAS provider, delivering the kind of scalability, redundancy and SLA’s that people see in the US, and backed by Tier-3 Certified Platform. This we found in Cloud-A. We are very pleased with the results in terms of performance and also the support that Cloud-A offers its customers. 

Edward L. Moore / President, Baystream

For Cloud-A, this partnership provides users with an end to end solution for their cloud storage needs.

Our Bulk Storage is a phenomenal product that has always been sought after in the Canadian market for its ability to scale and its reliability, but it is very much a raw material that requires development work, third party software, integration services and consulting for it to be an end-to-end solution for many customers. With their extensive industry experience and in-house engineering talent, Baystream fills these gaps by providing our existing and prospective customers with a truly enterprise grade, Canadian cloud storage solution.

Geoff Sullivan / Director of Business Development, Cloud-A

The enterprise cloud market is in explosive growth by all estimates. This growth was initially driven by the realization that the Cloud can deliver significant cost savings without the security risks, but lately companies are realizing that Cloud computing is also an important enabler for innovation. Cloud-A and Baystream are capitalizing on each other’s strengths to deliver the kind of systems that companies are looking for to effectively use the Cloud.

About Cloud-A

Cloud-A is the leading, and first, Canadian Public Cloud provider. Their products simplify customers’ deployment and management of the pillars of converged virtual infrastructure: Storage, Networking, and Compute. For more information, visit www.clouda.ca.

About Baystream Corporation

Baystream is a system integrator and managed services provider, specializing in cloud based technologies to deliver data security and content management products. Formed in 2005, Baystream has offices throughout Canada and in Germany. For more information, visit www.baymain.com.


Geoff Sullivan, Director of Business Development, Marketing and Public Relations

5562 Sackville Street, Halifax, NS, B3J 1L1

1-855-925-6831 ext. 703


Store Veeam Backups on Cloud-A with CloudBerry Backup

veeam (1)Veeam is a popular enterprise backup solution for on-premise virtualized infrastructure, specifically for vSphere and Hyper-V environments. We often get users asking if they can point their Veeam backups directly to Cloud-A Bulk Storage, and while it is possible, it requires some additional software.

CloudBerry Backup can be used for backing up your Veeam backup data into Cloud-A Bulk Storage, which gives you an extra level of confidence that your important files are safe, offsite on 3X redundant storage. Here is how you can use CloudBerry Backup for backing up Veeam files to Cloud-A.

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Enable Successful Public Cloud Adoption in the Enterprise with Business Agility

enterprisecloudA couple of weeks back at the OpenStack Summit in Vancouver, the Cloud-A team sat through a session called “Enabling Business Agility with OpenStack” with Dave Pitzely, Director, Infrastructure at Comcast, Mark Baker, Ubuntu Server and Cloud Product Manager at Canonical and Yih Leong Sun, Principal Software Engineer & Cloud Specialist at Liberty IT.

The talk was focused on how to prepare an enterprise for adopting private true cloud technology, the considerations to make, how to maximize business agility and recommendations for successful adoption of the new technology . While the session was private cloud focused, we feel that there was plenty of content that was relevant for an organization who is considering adoption public true cloud technology like Cloud-A.  Here are a few point that the speakers made and how they might pertain to an enterprise looking to adopt public cloud resources.

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Why Object Storage?

We have been seeing increasing demand for our object storage product, Bulk Storage over the past few months, which is exciting for us because we think that object storage is a phenomenal storage solution for many specific applications. We wanted to provide our followers with an overview of object storage technology and highlight some effective use cases. The biggest hurdle we see to adoption of our Bulk Storage product is an understanding of how exactly the technology can be used. As a result of this, a big portion of our job at Cloud-A is to play matchmaker and point users in the direction of existing third party software solutions that integrate with object storage.

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Cloud-A @ OpenStack Summit – A Week in Review

summit collage (1)

As some of our followers might know, the Cloud-A team spent last week in Vancouver for the OpenStack Summit. It was our first summit, and it was nice for it to be in our home country. The summit provided us with the opportunity to interact first hand with our community, listen to keynotes about the direction of our technology, input from industry leaders, and vendors about new and emerging technology in the OpenStack ecosystem. All in all, there was some very familiar messaging about how OpenStack has grown past infancy and is enterprise ready – something that we at Cloud-A have not doubted. To be perfectly honest we don’t feel that there was much announced that was in the category of groundbreaking, but still we wanted to highlight some of the themes and news from last weeks OpenStack summit in terms of future value for our customers.

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The Great Cloud Debate: Private vs. Public. Cost, Control and other considerations

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The Cloud-A team attended the OpenStack Summit track on Cloud Economics and Strategy with Jeff Dickey and Mark Williams of Redapt, Dan Spurling of Getty Images, Sebastian Stadil of Scalr and Sheng Liang of Rancher. The panel discussed key economic and strategic lessons learned through their experience managing public cloud infrastructure as well as private cloud infrastructure. Pricing trends of public cloud vendors, labour costs of private clouds were discussed and compared.

In the end, the panel agreed unanimously that in most cases, public cloud has a more attractive ROI when compared to deploying a private cloud. With that said, the group identified a few scenarios when private cloud may be more attractive.

When performance is mission critical

Stadil, of Scalr, mentioned NASA’s cloud workflows, processing petabytes of data coming down from space every day. The bandwidth required to handle this data is not available from public clouds and therefore NASA requires private cloud infrastructure.

Laws and Regulations

Germany’s strict data residency and privacy laws were discussed as well as the gaming (casino) industry. Both scenarios require absolute control over data which leaves private cloud as the only options in some cases.

Wanting to Own It

The notion that some clients just want to own the data, and the underlying cloud platform was mentioned. This is obviously something that not really anyone can argue with, and isn’t financially driven.

Control as a Decision Making Factor?

Control was a factor that was brought up by a member of the audience. The audience member stated that some organizations would not want mission critical workflows in the public cloud because they would have to rely on a third party to keep their business running. The panelists disagreed with this fundamentally, with Mark Williams stating that “Outages are a reality, whether public or private cloud.” He went on to say that in most cases outages are caused by humans, which is a factor in both a public cloud and private cloud. Dan Spurling backed this up by saying that when it comes to trusting his internal cloud team vs. a public cloud team , he’ll trust the public cloud team every time, purely for the experience and scale they have.

I personally agree with the panel on this topic, as we are seeing this becoming less and less of an issue with clients at Cloud-A. It is our reputation with superior uptime, and hands on support that allows organizations to trust us with hosting the applications that run their business.

Valuable Lessons

This was a very valuable track session, with many of the “cloud debate” questions that we hear about everyday discussed in real time, by people with real experience. In the end, scenarios and cases were made for both private and public cloud. If cost is the only thing considered, public cloud wins almost every time, but cost is not always the only thing to consider when deciding on your organization’s cloud strategy.

The Panel

Jeff Dickey

Chief Innovation Officer, Redapt, Redapt

As Chief Innovation Officer, Jeff oversees Cloud Strategy & Architecture at Redapt, he works with IT executives across the country as they solve current and future business problems with solutions that will stand the test of time. Jeff has worked in IT and Operations management consulting for over 15 years, helping companies across all verticals save millions by investing in technology and IT practices that that will meet the needs of both… Read More ?

Sheng Liang

Co-Founder, CEO of Rancher

Sheng is a co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs.  Prior to starting Rancher, Sheng was CTO of the Cloud Platforms group at Citrix Systems after their acquisition of Cloud.com, where he was co-founder and CEO.  Sheng has more than 15 years of experience building innovative technology.  He was a co-founder at Teros, which was acquired by Citrix in 2005 and led large engineering teams at SEVEN Networks, and Openwave Systems.  Sheng started his… Read More ?

Dan Spurling

VP – Tech Services, Getty Images

Proven executive with over 16 years of experience leading technology groups and cultivating world-class performance with an enterprise outlook. Extensive track record building and developing teams of high-talent leaders and high-output individuals located both on and off-shore. Holds an MBA from the University of Washington.

Sebastian Stadil

Founder, Scalr, Scalr

Sebastian Stadil has been a Cloud developer since 2004, starting with web services for e-commerce and then for computational resources. He founded the Silicon Valley Cloud Computing Group, a user group of over 8000 members that meets monthly to present the latest developments in the industry. | As if that weren’t enough, Sebastian founded Scalr, an end-to-end solution to manage application infrastructure deployed across private and public cloud… Read More ?

Mark Williams

CTO, Redapt

Possessing a deep technical knowledge in the public and private cloud space, Mark is responsible for optimizing Redapt’s private and hybrid cloud solutions as Chief Technology Officer. Mark continually balances the ecosystem of technology, products, services, and automation with customer requirements for scale, reliability, and performance. | |   | Prior to joining Redapt, Mark was VP of Cloud Infrastructure Services and the first operations… Read More ?

UPDATE: Check out the Cloud Economics talk for yourself!

Performance and Reliability on the Horizon for Neutron L2/L3 Agents

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The Cloud-A team attended the OpenStack Summit 12:05PM Track on “Neutron L2 and L3 agents: How They Work and How Kilo Improves Them” by Carl Baldwin of HP and Rossella Sblendido of SUSE. We wanted to arm ourselves with knowledge to help us make informed decisions about our networking upgrade paths and also about the additional value that upgrading to OpenStack Kilo will bring to our customers. The track provided an overview of the L2 and L3 deficiencies before Kilo and the enhancements and performance gains that will be possible in future releases of OpenStack.

Rossella Sblendido discussed the changes in the L2 agent for OpenStack Kilo. In a nutshell, the L2 agents in Kilo will do a better job of listening to changes in OpenvSwitch, the virtual switch used by OpenStack Neutron. This will allow for a smarter Neutron, giving it the ability to respond to networks changes faster, and with less disruptions.

Carl Baldwin, of HP, outlined the changes to the L3 agent for Kilo – and this is where we at Cloud-A are excited! The OpenStack Neutron team have completely rewritten the L3 agent for Kilo. The problem with the L3 agent in the past is it was one massive agent that had to handle all three OpenStack router types – legacy routing, HA routing and distributed virtual routing (DVR). This meant that the agent was clunky and slow because it did all of the work for all three router types. In Kilo, they have written one core, generic routing class and subclasses for all of the specific routing types. Baldwin compared the former L3 agent as the handyman, or the “jack of all trades” who had to know a little about everything and was stretched thin, and the new L3 agent as the “general contractor” who knows which sub-agent to “hire” for the right job. This new architecture should allow for higher performance and reliability in Neutron.

We are excited about these changes at Cloud-A. We are always evaluating new ideas and concepts in our upgrade paths to ensure that we bring the most value possible to our customers. Reliability and performance is key in any networking scenario. We will continue to evaluate these changes in the OpenStack Kilo and take them into consideration in our upgrade paths.

Stay tuned for more inside information from the team attending the conference as we will be posting our thoughts from Vancouver all week long!

Here is a link to the talk:


Carl Baldwin OpenStack Summit Schedule

Rossella Sblendido OpenStack Summit Schedule


UPDATE: Check out the Neutron Agent talk for yourself!

Cloud-A Heads to Vancouver for the OpenStack Summit


The Cloud-A team is making it’s way to Vancouver this week for the OpenStack Summit. We will be setting up shop downtown in an office space, meeting with existing and prospective customers, technology vendors and integration partners. The team is extremely excited to see new and familiar faces.

The whole goal of this trip is to learn how we can better the Cloud-A experience for our users. The OpenStack Summit will allow us to interact with our fellow OpenStack operators and developers to gain perspective on how organizations are running their private or public clouds all over the world. We will be meeting with hardware vendors to educate ourselves on the latest and greatest technology available. As active members and contributors to the OpenStack Community, the Summit will give us the ability to have our say and voice our opinions of the technical direction of the project.

While we have several meetings set up already, we are looking forward to booking more time with customers and partners to get feedback and learn how we can continue to innovate and bring the best public cloud experience to Canada that we can.

Cloud-A team members will be in Vancouver from Friday, May 14 until Friday, May 22. Please email info@clouda.ca to set up a meeting.

Please also look out for Cloud-A representatives at several of the OpenStack Summit evening events.