RightScale: 2010 top cloud computing startup

With over one hundred employees and thousands of customers, cloud management company RightScale is by far the number one cloud startup.


1. RightScale


RightScale is one of those companies that seemed to outgrow the startup label almost overnight. With more than a hundred employees and a customer base in the thousands, the name RightScale is synonymous with cloud computing success. The company's CTO Thorsten von Eicken still calls the cloud management company a startup, though, so who are we to argue?

One of the coolest things in RightScale's portfolio is a product it calls ServerTemplates, a blueprint of what a particular server should do in the cloud. It lets users deploy preconfigured, cloud-ready servers that know how to operate in the cloud: how to obtain an IP address, how to access and manage storage, how to submit monitoring data, and how to collaborate with other servers in a cloud deployment. ServerTemplates takes a ton of the tedious configuration management work away from admins while helping them to keep the infrastructure consistent and predictable.

RightScale CEO Michael Crandell said that, at one point, his company's pipes carried 2% of the entire world's Internet traffic, thanks to game maker and customer Zynga hitting peak usage on Farmville and other games. RightScale helped launch more than one million virtual servers by April 2010 and recently reported customer usage had grown 1,000% in a single year.

RightScale is clearly the preeminent cloud startup on the scene, and it has raised $22 million in capital to date, thanks to its last significant funding grab of $13 million from Benchmark Capital in December 2008.


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