Blue Box pledges sort-of elastic OpenStack private clouds starting now

Blue Box on Tuesday will unveil a new expandable OpenStack-based private cloud that promises customers dedicated and more flexible resources without a big buy-in.

Starting last spring, the Seattle-based company offered its take on OpenStack private cloud but only as a contracted service with a minimum 1-year buy in. The new Blue Box Cloud is billable by the month starting at $5,000 for 3 physical nodes, 96 cores, 384 GB RAM, and 3.6 TB disk.[company] Blue Box [/company]runs its OpenStack version on dedicated hardware in its own data centers to give business customers assurance about the security of their data and workloads.
Bllue Box CloudWhile monthly billing is more flexible than annual commitment, this is still not the spin-up, spin-down pay-as-you-go model popularized by Amazon Web Services ‘ public cloud, but similar flexibility is the goal here. The company mantra is private cloud up-and running in under an hour, said [company] Blue Box[/company] Founder and CTO Jesse Proudman (pictured above with friend) said in an interview.

A fast, easy install of OpenStack is a selling point for buyers who want to use open-source software but balk at the notion of implementing and maintaining it themselves.

Later this year, Blue Box plans to add automated provisioning that will enable push-button additions and deletions of capacity.
This product competes with Mirantis Express, which was just updated last week, [company]Rackspace[/company] Private Cloud and [company]Metacloud[/company] — but Proudman says it offers price advantages over all three. More on Metacloud’s managed OpenStack cloud is here.

Blue Box is one of more than a dozen vendors pinning their cloud hopes on OpenStack in various incarnations at a time when cloud consolidation appears to be upon us. Rackspace may or may not be for sale; HP just bought Eucalyptus; and you have to wonder if the exit strategy for any of the smaller players is to get swallowed up by one of the big guys.

Proudman acknowledged this is a natural question, but said Blue Box is in this for the long haul. It’s already been around for quite a bit — it was founded 11 years ago as a managed service provider, has garnered about $9 million in funding and employs about 55 people.