Peeling back the layers of Rackspace managed cloud

Facing steep competition from the likes of AWS and Google, Rackspace distinguishes itself as a managed cloud services provider.

Rackspace, a managed cloud services provider, has steadily built out its cloud services footprint over the past year, with a specific focus on big data and hybrid cloud. Additionally, Rackspace offers public and private cloud services based on OpenStack, and fully manages those services for its enterprise customers.

But, to determine whether Rackspace is the best cloud provider for your business, it's important to take a closer look at the vendor's services portfolio, pricing model and more.

Rackspace managed cloud has three tiers of service:

  1. Managed Infrastructure: Rackspace's basic level of service includes security guidance, 60 days of help launching in the cloud and architecture advisors. The Managed Infrastructure tier of service costs $0.005 per GB per hour with a $50 minimum.
  2. Managed Operations -- SysOps: Rackspace's recommended level for IT operations includes everything in the Managed Infrastructure tier, as well as a number of additional services, such as backups, managed monitoring and response, and platform maintenance. The tier costs $0.02 per GB per hour with a $500 minimum.
  3. Managed Operations -- DevOps Automation: This is Rackspace's highest tier of service, and includes everything in the first two service levels plus additional managed services, such as configuration management, on-demand scaling and performance monitoring and response. It costs $2,500 per month plus $0.02 per GB per hour.

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In addition to these managed cloud options, Rackspace offers a number of other cloud services, including:

Cloud Servers: Rackspace offers managed VMs and bare metal servers, which costs $0.032 per hour for raw infrastructure.

Cloud Sites: This is Rackspace's premium Web-hosting service that is scalable and offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee. The company can work with any development platform and pricing starts at $150 a month.

Cloud Databases: With on-demand provisioning and open APIs, Rackspace's Cloud Databases service allows customers to deploy MySQL, Percona Server or MariaDB for $0.05 per hour with no contracts or upfront costs.

Cloud Big Data: Customers who need access to big data processing can add Hadoop-powered analytics built on the Hortonworks Data Platform for $0.34 per hour with no upfront costs.

Cloud Files: Rackspace offers online object storage as an additional service. Cloud Files automatically makes three copies of everything stored and costs $0.100 per GB per month for the first TB of data.

Cloud Block Storage: Hosted on Cloud Servers, Cloud Block Storage is Rackspace's on-demand storage service for applications. Customers can choose between standard and solid-state storage $0.12 per GB per month.

According to Rackspace, every customer has 24/7 access to customer service, 365 days a year, via phone, email or chat.

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