Web 2.0 company Intridea announced on Monday it has launched Scalr, a "self-curing and self-scaling hosting environment" that uses the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud.
The company says that enterprise IT professionals can use Scalr to quickly and cost effectively set up server farms capable of scaling up to 100,000 or more users. The on-demand service also requires no installation or configuration.
Scalr will be introduced in conjunction with RailsConf 2008, being held May 29 to June 1 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregan.
Built on Amazon Web Services, Scalr enables developers to create server farms through a web-based interface using pre-built Amazon Machine Images for load balancers, application servers, databases and a generic AMI that developers can customise.
Once a developer sets up a server farm, Scalr continuously monitors and maintains it, providing automatic scaling, redundancy and failover as needed.
When the load average on a type of node rises above a configurable threshold, a new node is inserted into the farm to distribute the load, and the cluster is reconfigured. When a node crashes, Scalr inserts a new machine of that type into the farm to replace it.
Developers can further customise each AMI in Scalr, bundle the image and use it for future nodes that are inserted into the farm. They can also change one machine and use that for a specific type of node. New machines of this type will be purchased online to meet current demands, while the old machines are terminated one by one.
Scalr is built entirely on standard technology, which is supported and extended by the open-source community, as well as Amazon's AWS community. Scalr is being offered as an on-demand service, or as an open-source software download.
"Typically enterprises have to buy extra server capacity and expensive load balancing solutions to prevent spikes from bringing their websites to a crawl," says Dave Naffis, Intridea founding partner and director of product development.
"By leveraging Amazon's EC2, Scalr automatically allocates as much?or as little?server capacity as needed. Now IT professionals can stop worrying about server availability and focus instead on enriching the functionality of their Web applications."
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