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Rackspace woos developers with Exceptional acquisition

Rackspace hopes its second acquisition in as many months will increase its appeal to application developers.

The new buy, announced Thursday, will see the employees and assets of Exceptional Cloud Services, based in San Francisco, Calif., join Rackspace as a wholly owned subsidiary. This deal follows a similar acquisition of Object Rocket last month.

Exceptional has three sub-properties that got Rackspace interested:

  • Exceptional.io – tracks errors in over 6,000 web applications.
  • Airbrake.io – collects errors generated by applications and aggregates the results for review.
  • Redis To Go – hosts the open-source Redis key value store for customers

Exceptional’s CEO Jonathan Siegel said yesterday that his company’s ideal customer is one which has end users who are going to have major issues if the customer’s application doesn’t function properly. Also the highest value of its products is realized by customers who have multiple clients, like browsers and phone operating systems, which need to access the customer’s applications simultaneously.

In other words, Web developers.

The next logical question, then, is whether Rackspace plans to integrate Exceptional’s IP with its Cloud SitesPlatform as a Service (PaaS).

Cloud Sites currently supports programming using the PHP and .NET frameworks, but Rackspace now has multiple properties that could theoretically expand the underpinnings of Cloud Sites, from MySQL as a service, the MongoDB NoSQL database, and now an in-memory database service in Redis To Go. Meanwhile Amazon, as usual, is the elephant in the room here; Rackspace is looking to edge in on territory – the next generation of Web developers — to which Amazon Web Services has already staked a firm claim.

I asked whether these acquisitions will give Cloud Sites a shot in the arm, and essentially got elevator music in response. It’s a fair bet, though, that Rackspace will look to boost its integrated offerings to reach developers to the extent Amazon has.

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