AWS OUTAGE ANALYSIS: WHAT WENT WRONG?

AWS OUTAGE ANALYSIS: WHAT WENT WRONG?

In the second week of December, 2021, Amazon Web Services experienced one of its worst outages ever. During the holiday shopping rush, the problems spread to the company’s retail operation, which uses AWS-based software and apps.

According to AWS’s explanation of what went wrong, “An automated activity to scale capacity of one of the AWS services hosted in the main AWS network triggered an unexpected behavior from a large number of clients inside the internal network, this resulted in a large surge of connection activity that overwhelmed the networking devices between the internal network and the main AWS network, resulting in delays for communication between these networks.”

What happened with the AWS outage?

The most recent of AWS’s major outages occurred in the second week of December and lasted five hours, affecting customers using specific application interfaces in the us-east-1 region: North Virginia. A five-hour outage is a significant incident in a public cloud the size of AWS. 

Several AWS services in the region were affected like:

  • Management console
  • Route 53
  • API Gateway
  • Amazon Connect
  • EC2

Basically, AWS unintentionally triggered a Distributed Denial of Service (or DDoS attack) on their own internal network. The issue had a broad impact, causing varying degrees of difficulty for services like Twitch, Star Trek Timelines, the PlayStation Network, Clash Royale, Intuit Quickbooks, Slack, Netflix, USPS, Ring, Starbucks, Snapchat etc. It also affected many Amazon services, such as Prime Music, Ring doorbells, logistics apps in their fulfillment centers, and parts of the Amazon.com shopping site.

How were the customers impacted?

Firstly, the main AWS network was unaffected, which meant that AWS customer workloads were “not directly impacted”. Customers were affected by AWS services that relied on the company’s internal network.

However, the internal network glitch had a wide range of consequences for customer-facing AWS services, including computing, container, content distribution services, databases, desktop virtualization, and network optimization tools.

How can United Private Cloud help you avoid these outages?

A full report from AWS is still to come, but in the meantime, IT pros should start bolstering their cloud disaster recovery strategies now – before the next outage. United Private Cloud can help you avoid these outages by offering SLA of 99.999% service uptime.

United Private Cloud offers suites of managed services for our private cloud customers to help them meet their dynamic requirements.

We understand vulnerabilities can occur during day-to-day IT processes, which is why we offer resources to monitor your entire cloud stack, from the infrastructure to the application layer through the operating system.

The G3 Private Cloud is a software-defined private cloud architectured like a public cloud and engineered for scale and service availability of 99.999% uptime globally. It also comes with 24x7x365 fully managed enterprise support with 15 minutes response time and expert escalation every 30 minutes until resolution. With us, you get all the benefits, including high-performance, high availability, on-demand scalability, along with enhanced security of your cloud computing processes. 

We also offer a variety of network security services as well as network management, cloud services and disaster recovery services to overcome any unprecedented events,

We have industry leading partnerships for providing cloud security to our customers with 10+ virtual security solutions in place.

And lastly, we enable organizations to gain performance advantages, lower costs, rapidly respond to unpredictable demand, and easily solve data sovereignty and compliance requirements across 5 continents. 

About United Private Cloud

United Private Cloud comes with all the benefits of cloud computing but with the greater controls and security of an enterprise-grade software-defined private cloud.

Our experts will assist your company in developing the best multicloud strategy, no matter where it is on its cloud journey. Our experts will also analyze your current infrastructure and application portfolio, evaluate your cost structure, and recommend the ideal platforms for your needs.

Put our experts to work for your IT transformation here!

Know Everything About Private Cloud and IaaS

Know Everything About Private Cloud and IaaS

Private cloud and IaaS are more than hype in this day and age. The adoption of both cloud managed services and infrastructure has tremendously grown. It’s predicted that by 2025, the amount of data stored in cloud servers will surpass 100 Zettabytes (Source: Cybercrime magazine). Sometimes these cloud computing terms such as SaaS, PaaS, Private Cloud, IaaS, Public Cloud, Hybrid Cloud, and others may seem a bit too confusing. Figuring them out on your own might take much research and probably consultation with various cloud managed service providers. We are here to widen your knowledge base by offering you clarity so that you can take your first step towards cloud adoption.

What is Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) in cloud computing?

The form of cloud technology where you get access to virtual computing resources over the internet is IaaS. The cloud service provider manages your entire IT infrastructure in this particular model, such as network resources, storage, and server. They deliver this managed service to you via virtual desktop infrastructure that is accessible through the internet. The pros for IaaS are:

  • Cost-Effective:Your infrastructure is set up and managed by the cloud managed services provider. Therefore, it’s more reliable and robust which helps you save your business’ upfront costs associated with purchasing, maintaining, and operating hardware.
  • Security: Security is very important for your IT environment. Most IaaS cloud providers make significant investments in their IT security measures thereby offering you higher levels of security and protection.
  • Scalability: You can scale your business up and down based on your requirements. IaaS ensures that your business can handle this scalability through procedures like automatic provisioning of resources
  • Prepared against adversities: IaaS cloud computing ensures that your IT environment is prepped up for the worst case scenarios. Most solution providers host their equipment in highly secure, available, and purposely built data centers with access to continuous power, cooling, and network connectivity. In case of any disaster event, time taken to restore your infrastructure will be reduced.
  • Ability to expand business: With lesser pressure in running and managing your IT environment, you will be able to focus on growing your business. You will have ample time and resources to develop your applications and solutions.

In short, your cloud solution provider hosts every infrastructure component such as networking hardware, servers, storage, and others that is available on an on-premises data center. IaaS providers also offer a range of services in addition to these infrastructure components such as monitoring, log access, clustering, storage resiliency, and the list goes on. United Private Cloud in particular, offers you a fully managed infrastructure and database irrespective of your business size and platform. You would be able to receive OS and Hypervisor patching/management along with AWS, Azure, GCP management.

What is a private cloud?

Private cloud solution is a computing model which offers you a proprietary environment dedicated to your business. With this cloud managed service, you receive extended virtual desktop infrastructure resources through physical components stored on-premise or at the data center of your cloud vendor. The best part of this kind of cloud solution is that you can configure the environment and manage it in a way that is uniquely suited to your company’s data requirements. There are certain key benefits you receive when you choose private cloud computing:

  • You can comply with strict regulatory requirements because sensitive data is held on hardware that anyone else cannot access.
  • You can fully configure your cloud environment to run proprietary software. 
  • When any of your software applications require additional computing resources, you can hybridize these resources from your private cloud to a public cloud. It will keep up the uptime without installing any additional physical servers.
  • Private cloud ensures the continuity of your business as you have privacy, technology adaptability, and control of your data for as long as you want to stay in the industry.
  • You receive improved levels of security compared to that of the public cloud. All of your data is saved and managed on servers to which no other company has any access, thereby offering you privacy as well. If the servers are located in a datacenter the internal IT team accesses it via highly secure networks instead of using everyday unsecured internet.

Private clouds rely on virtualization technology to combine resources. A layer of management software is then added to help you gain administrative control over the infrastructure, applications, platforms, and data used in the cloud. It helps you to track and optimize usage, oversee integration points, and retain or recover data. Finally, a layer of automation is added to replace or cut down human interaction with repeatable functions. 

How are IaaS and Private Cloud related?

Infrastructure-as-a-Service is an entire infrastructure made of networking resources, storage, and server hosted on a public cloud that offers these resources your company’s exclusive ownership. It is not equal to a private cloud when we talk about an apt cloud computing service. IaaS is far more limited than private cloud, which is powerful and can deliver computing resources far beyond just the infrastructure.

Another relationship between the two is that you can deploy IaaS as a part of the private cloud. Still it won’t match the number of offerings that come in with the private cloud deployment. A private cloud solution can be independent of other computing resources and functions similar to an on-site data center. Such a private cloud environment can still be managed virtually while offering more add-on services otherwise not available in a strict IaaS service. Vendors can also package private cloud as a comprehensive cloud computing product. In this case, a hosted cloud would include:

  • Traditional infrastructural resources of an IaaS solution and 24/7/365 IT management resources.
  • Security.
  • Access for the users.
  • Cloud assessment and migration.
  • Container and mesh service management.

Therefore you must not think of IaaS as a synonym for private cloud, but you definitely get more features and advantages when you opt for the latter than just the infrastructure. It becomes a fruitful venture to combine the power of private cloud and IaaS to maximize your business operations.

Even though there is a clear demarcation between these two cloud computing terms, the primary appeal of IaaS is its ability to virtualize both software and hardware. Suppose your company has a smaller budget for virtualization, or you have minimal requirements from your cloud infrastructure. In that case, you definitely will be intrigued by how much IaaS could offer your business. United Private Cloud has a built-in IaaS private cloud service to manage your systems, database, and network to help you focus on your business growth initiatives. You will be able to drastically improve your performance and customer satisfaction once you adopt our cloud computing managed solution. You experience performance, scalability, and availability along with greater control and security with this enterprise-grade private cloud. Have a peek at our website now to find how we can fit your bill!

How Is Hosted Private Cloud Different From On-Premise Private Cloud?

How Is Hosted Private Cloud Different From On-Premise Private Cloud?

Transforming IT infrastructure into utility – that’s what cloud computing does. This technology keeps your company at the forefront of the industry and enables you to cut costs, offer stability and flexibility, and above all, provide enhanced security and stability. With that being said, 94% of enterprises already use a cloud service to stay in control of their traditional IT infrastructure.

However, it’s vital to understand which kind of private cloud solution suits your business and fits your bills. Private cloud, in general, is one such kind of solution that makes the entire cloud infrastructure and computing resources accessible by one enterprise only. There are different types of private cloud itself, for example, a virtual private cloud solution. It’s an isolated and safe space compartmentalized within a bigger private cloud. The pros of using private cloud services are:

  1. Upgraded security.
  2. Enhanced control.
  3. Energy-efficient.
  4. Easy on the budget.
  5. Improved reliability.

Hence, many companies started adopting it to gain customized solutions for their respective businesses. There are two categories of private cloud solutions: hosted and on-premise. Let’s talk about how different these categories are to give you a clear idea of which one you should choose.

Hosted Private Cloud

These cloud solutions are owned by providers who rent their server space to your business. It allows you to deploy applications and store your data on a flexible infrastructure without investing on hardware, software, servers, or other components. The vendors like United Private Cloud offer you servers in our data centers to make things manageable and easy for you. Benefits of using hosted private cloud are:

  • Security management relies on the cloud solution provider so you need not worry about investing in security and control practices.
  • You receive additional resources, high-demand scalability features, an easy-to-use dashboard, and an efficient support team to help you with the complexity of server management.
  • It’s easy on your budget as you pay for the features your business requires. Hosted private clouds are sized for your business and decrease costs.
    Hosted private cloud solution is agile as it allows you to add things as needed, even for a short duration.
  • The private cloud solution provider is in charge of control practices set forth by your industry and the security measures. Hence you need to select the right third-party solution provider.

On-Premise Private Cloud

In this particular solution, you host the cloud environment internally on your business location. It offers you total control and flexibility over your internal data center, starting from the types of configurations of the servers to the kinds of hardware utilized. If your business already has system administrators or other apt experts, then on-premise is meant for you. Some of the benefits are:

  • You are in complete control of the security, scalability, and configurability of your servers. Although, the size of your data center determines the scalability factor.
  • The overall costs related to server hardware, power, and space are your responsibility.
  • On-premise private cloud service requires in-house resources to maintain it and its related processes.
  • In-house private cloud service allows businesses to collocate their cloud computing devices on premise, which is either managed by themselves or a third-party private cloud solution provider. Due to this very reason, the companies can implement all the security practices which they need to add an extra layer of security to their business processes.
  • Numerous professional and technical companies address various aspects of cloud technology offering their own standards, recommendations, and guidance for a successful implementation of private cloud. Some examples can be: Cloud Standards Customer Council, DMTF, European Telecommunications Standards Institute, and others. If your company is subjected to any of these industry regulations and compliance rules, then it’s easier to adhere to such standards with on-premise private cloud hosting.

While there are pros and cons to each of the above services, it all comes down to your needs of flexibility, security, compliance, cost, applications, suitable environments, and organizational capacities. It’s a fact that cybersecurity is a primary concern today, and there were a total of 5,258 confirmed data breaches that occurred in 16 industries and four world regions, as per Verizon 2021 Data Breach Investigation Records. For this sole reason, hosted private cloud can do wonders by adding extra layers of security and user identity and access management.

Whichever cloud you choose, you have to bear the expenses for any additional resource to keep you at par with modern technology. At the end of the day, you want to work smarter and eliminate the headaches of the age-old ways of data management and storage. United Private Cloud comes with high performance, high availability, security and compliance, on-demand scalability, multi-cloud connectivity, and many more features to ensure that your business runs smoothly. We manage your systems, databases, and networks with our enterprise-level solution so that you can focus on initiatives that foster your business’s growth.

Are you interested to know more? Visit us at United Private Cloud and get all the answers.

Why do developers prefer Mac mini?

Why do developers prefer Mac mini?

The Mac mini is exactly what it says it is: a mini Mac. It’s a compact, portable desktop computer that can transform any screen into a Mac-powered smart computer.

Apple’s computers are fantastic pieces of machinery – there is no doubt about it. But what is it about the Mac mini that makes them so popular among programmers? Read this blog and find out!

Security:

One of the main reasons why developers don’t fancy windows is security. They don’t want their work to be hijacked over by a malicious hacker, and they certainly don’t want to hold their breath every time they’re prompted to click on a pop-up. Some of the security features of the Mac mini has been explained below:

  • Exploit mitigation: It includes mechanisms that can help protect against remote code execution or zero-day vulnerability exploits. This includes a hardware-level security mechanism known as pointer authentication, making it far more difficult for an attacker to modify pointers in memory and provides a layer of security against buffer overflow exploits.
  • Vulnerability: The checkm8 vulnerability that affected the T2 is now no longer present on the M1-equipped Mac Mini. The T2 chip isn’t even present in M1 Macs. Instead, the security functionality that the T2 supported is baked into the M1.
  • System Integrity: During startup, system integrity allows for a hardware-level verification of the operating system. It also continues to protect macOS authorizations in the background as it runs. This strengthens protections against sophisticated malware that tries to hijack macOS regularly.

Cross-Platform Compatibility:

Working with MAC OS X allows you to run all of the major operating systems on your machine, which is a huge benefit for programmers. Running OS X on a Windows device would be difficult, and the only way to do so would be to install hacked versions of OS X. In contrast, Mac mini can efficiently run Windows and even Linux in a virtual environment.

Developers can use Parallels or a similar virtualization tool to give multiple operating systems on their Mac mini if it is sufficiently equipped (it means a Mac mini should have an i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, and absolutely SSD instead of a hard drive).

For developers, this is a significant appeal. If they have a powerful Mac mini with Parallels installed, they can run Windows and Linux alongside MacOS applications, even dragging and dropping between them. This level of flexibility is unrivaled by any other operating system.

Applications and UX:

Another reason for the success of the Mac mini is its friendly and elegant user interface, as well as a large number of high-quality applications available. For instance, applications like Alfred, Amphetamine, Pocket, etc are apps that help boost the productivity of many developers.

Why did that prove to be such a game-changer?

The popularity of Apple devices among developers coincided with an era in which web development became more sophisticated, necessitating more specialized tools. The macOS X environment was poised to fulfill the need with text editors, package managers, etc. So, an increasing number of developers began to adopt macOS due to the accurate perception that they provided the most sophisticated development environment.

What are the hardware capabilities of the Mac mini?

  • Running Apps on M1 Mac mini: Apple has created tools that allow developers to create Universal app binaries that run flawlessly on both Apple Silicon and Intel chips and the Rosetta 2 translation layer that enables x86 apps to run on the M1 chip.
  • Apple M1 Chip: Apple has made the M1 do precisely what the company wants it to because it is a custom design. As a result, many different Mac mini components, including the GPU and the T2 security chip, have been integrated into the M1’s design.This process of miniaturization results in greater efficiency or lower power consumption.Power consumption is likely to be the most tangible benefit for the developers here. The new M1 Chips use half the power of previous Intel chips, which means double the battery life.

Ready to get your organization connected with UnitedMac?

UnitedMac provides managed & dedicated cloud Mac mini devices that can be accessed on-demand for app development and enterprise builds. Get services from our most secure and resilient cloud data centers in San Francisco, USA, and Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Visit our website to know more!

4 Ways The Private Cloud Improves Your Security Posture

4 Ways The Private Cloud Improves Your Security Posture

Cloud computing has changed how organizations need to think about their data and assets being secured. As organizations continue to embrace cloud-based strategies to support artificial intelligence, the Internet, and big data, sensitive assets’ security is apprehensive. Some organizations create private clouds on-site to mitigate these concerns. These private clouds can have greater flexibility and agility than the public cloud, improved data control, and the ability to meet industry-specific compliance requirements.

At United Private Cloud, we frequently see businesses struggling to keep their ‘Do-it-yourself’ private clouds safe, where we’ve been investing in cloud security for two decades. Simply put, more responsibility is added in the hands of your organization as you move to a private cloud environment; it could be challenging to keep the environment secure without adequate staff resources and expertise. We’re a managed service provider with a difference: on each of the leading private clouds: VMware, Microsoft, and OpenStack, we deliver private cloud as a service. For example, we understand that vulnerabilities can occur during day-to-day IT processes, which is why we offer resources to monitor your entire cloud stack, from the infrastructure to the application layer through the operating system. Policy updates, patches, and even the launch of new technology are included in our 24x7x365 service.

    • Cloud providers make layers of security more accessible: It is costly and complex to keep systems safe from threats. Businesses need devoted resources and huge budgets to do so alone and do it well. This is an additional benefit for private cloud providers. They can make fair use of economies of scale to improve their operations and provide their shared infrastructure with high robustness. The entire money, time, and resources invested in the construction and maintenance of a highly secure cloud platform benefit not only one company but thousands and millions of clients. These businesses can therefore benefit from multiple security layers that they could not have implemented themselves.
    • Cloud providers facilitate system updates and patches: Ensuring the system up to date always requires continuous attention and minimizing risks. The cyber threat landscape is evolving, and vendors quickly detect and fix many vulnerabilities hackers prey on. Unfortunately, updating software takes time, and it is a task that often falls through the cracks when an organization faces budgetary constrictions. One advantage of using a cloud service is that the cloud service provider facilitates system updates. The organization will have access to them as soon as the latest versions and fixes are available. This ensures that systems continue to be protected from vulnerabilities.
    • Cloud providers take onus for the risk of threats: Cloud service providers use stricter security measures for their infrastructure. The explanation is that their product and core skills are at stake. The organization also implements security into its cloud platform from the ground up and introduces obligatory security requirements into each development process. Top cloud providers are also involved with comprehensive third-party audits that test and validate security checks to ensure international and industry-specific adherence requirements are followed.
    • Cloud providers have strict policies to prevent unauthorized access: In safeguarding against cyber-attacks, physical security plays a key role. For instance, seeing access control servers sitting under the receptionist’s desk in an organization’s front lobby is not unusual. The data can be stolen or lost by one USB key at any time. Mitigating internal threats is a vital component of what a cloud service provider does. Private Cloud service providers create data centers with unparalleled physical security levels, ranging from policies and procedures to the technology they use. They introduce extensive procedures for an incident response so that any violation is instantly detected and dealt with.

Why outsource the risk and costs to cloud providers?

The stakes are high when it comes to cybersecurity – and organizations find it more challenging to keep pace with the onslaught of new threats. This is why the responsibility and risk are shifted to cloud service providers. Not only are cloud service providers best positioned to operate and maintain these systems and keep them safe, but they also make access to the highest possible standards of security more accessible for their customers. In addition to price, scalability, uptime, and reliability, location is arguably the key consideration when choosing a technology partner. The right location choice means an optimized infrastructure and application environment that can reach your entire audience or a game-changing strategy for data analytics that helps you better understand your operations and your clients than competitors. On the flip side, a poor location can lead to unstable connections and efficiency issues.

What are the benefits of a compliant data center?

  • Reduced Complexity: The weight of complexity is lifted from your shoulders by co-locating your servers in a compliant data center.
  • Save on Costs: A compliant service provider allows the IT team to concentrate on crucial applications specifically related to your business, not on the regular information related to server updates, infrastructure for data centers, network management, and security.
  • Security: To protect confidential information, top colocation providers are equipped with managed servers, cloud, power, and network infrastructure designed with redundant routers, switches, and paired universal threat management devices.
  • Availability: The use of high-availability (HA) solutions in a fully redundant and compliant data center guarantees consistent uptime and data availability for customers

United Private Cloud is certified to the highest industry standards and is fully compliant with SSAE16 and HIPAA. Our colocation services offer a 24x7x365 live support Network Operations Center, with staff adept at escalation and natural disaster procedures.

At United Private Cloud, we are obsessed with the success of our customers, and that includes ensuring that the right security measures are in place through our private cloud offerings:

  • Software-Defined Kubernetes Container Cloud: An on-premises turnkey cloud solution that delivers pure upstream Kubernetes with the typical management components required to run real enterprise workloads. Deploy applications, scale them up and make them more resilient even in hybrid or multi-cloud infrastructures, using United Private Cloud Highly Available Kubernetes Solution.
  • Software-Defined G3 powered by VMware: G3 private cloud powered by VMware provides you a fully managed, single-tenant, dedicated VMware private cloud in your choice of global data centers, including your own, and allows you to address data sovereignty requirements, while also locating cloud resources closer to your office which can improve performance and customer satisfaction drastically.
  • Private Cloud on Hyper-V: G3 private cloud with Hyper-V is a simple and easy-to-deploy private cloud solution that can be flexibly expanded when required. It integrates and manages your environments with tools and services designed for hybrid cloud with high-security level through HGS (Hosted Guardian Service) and single tenancy management compared to public cloud environments.
  • OpenStack: G3 Private cloud delivers OpenStack private cloud as-a-service, architected like a public cloud and designed for scale and service availability to any data center in the world. It includes a 99.999% API Uptime SLA and can save customers revenue up to 30%.

Visit the United Private Cloud website to get a complete IT Estate Assessment that helps you navigate a seamless cloud adoption strategy.

Why Choose Private Cloud?

Why Choose Private Cloud?

All clouds become private clouds whenever a single customer with fully isolated access is committed to the underlying IT infrastructure.

For a single company, a private cloud is a storage environment with public cloud advantages but housed in the data center of a company or through a third-party provider. Private clouds are recognized for their efficiency, security, and expandability and are therefore often the option of choice for enterprise workload infrastructure. Private clouds provide individualized clients with fully separate databases, software instances, and supporting infrastructure.

At present, and we are experiencing an age in which digital transformation is not an option anymore, but central to business processes. The so-called ‘new normal’ is beginning to take shape, and it seems like several organizations are starting to embrace cloud-based technologies to promote flexible and remote work, if possible. 

While robust antivirus and firewall security are needed in every cloud environment, private cloud solutions give decision-makers an enhanced sense of security. Critical information is kept safe and protected by using hardware specifically dedicated to the organization’s needs. This is achievable through what is called a single-tenant cloud architecture by the industry. Think of residents as corporations. But they’re searching for hardware to house their data in this situation.

For a private cloud environment, cloud access is even more protected since it is accessed through private and secure network links. Besides, private clouds have a fixed billing model instead of a prepaid method, which essentially helps organizations to plan growth and budget more accurately.

We have a completely operated business support service for 24/7/365 with 15 min time for response together with expert escalation every half an hour. With 99.999% high availability N+M clusters, United Private Cloud has a computing, software-defined network, and storage services. Our great sense of customer project recognition means that we are continually working to provide solutions. This sense of identity also implies that we respect and facilitate smooth communication with the teams of our customers and guarantee that the best value is received.

Companies are opting for United Private Cloud to receive gains in performances, cost reduction, adapt quickly to unforeseen contingencies, and overcome data sovereignty effectively along with worldwide enforcement requirements. To have a better understanding of what else United Private Cloud has in store for you, register today for a free preview.