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VMblog Expert Interview: Joe Morgan of Virtuozzo Discusses CloudFest and Partnerships


It was a busy time last week for Virtuozzo, as the company attended CloudFest, where they had a couple of keynote addresses at the show, addressing the topic of "cloud for all."  And they also announced some partnership news as well.

To find out more, VMblog spoke with Joe Morgan, VP of Cloud at Virtuozzo.

VMblog:  Tell us about CloudFest and why Virtuozzo was there. We understand you had several keynote addresses at the show?

Joe Morgan:  CloudFest is kind of a crazy event, I've been a couple of times now. It takes place in beautiful countryside in the middle of nowhere at Germany's answer to Disneyland... We were a Platinum Sponsor this year, and it's a great place to do networking, catch up with customers, hopefully meet some new ones, and they always have some really interesting keynote speakers!

We ran a couple of masterclasses on WordPress and Containers, and I spoke about the future of cloud, which was an interesting experience. We also had a guest keynote from the CTO of Miss Group, Petter Lund, who talked about their project with Virtuozzo to optimize their entire hosting infrastructure.  

VMblog:  We note the news announcement last week about your relationship with Miss Group. How are you working with Miss Group, and what kind of virtualization solutions are involved? Can you provide more insight into this new partnership?

Morgan:  Like a lot of big hosting groups, Miss Group has acquired a lot of smaller hosting companies, something like 24 in the last 3 years, and the result is that they have many different virtualization platforms to manage. Proxmox, OpenStack, OpenVZ, VMware, you name it. 

For those brands selling mass-market hosting, shared and VPS hosting, it's really a high volume, low margin kind of game. So what they need is efficiency in their infrastructure. Like, a fanatical approach to efficiency. And that is one of the things we do at Virtuozzo, with our Virtuozzo Hybrid Server product. 

It gives them a fast and ultra-efficient container and VM hosting platform. System containers, KVM virtual machines and software-defined storage, highly tuned to optimize density, especially RAM and storage, for those shared hosting and VPS hosting services. So what they are doing is gradually replacing all of those other mass market hosting platforms, with Virtuozzo - and doing that enables them to save between 30 % and 50%. It's exciting!

VMblog:  Can you tell us more about the different parts of the Virtuozzo portfolio, who uses them and why?

Morgan: Virtuozzo solutions enable various kinds of as-a-service, for service providers. That includes hosting service providers like Miss Group, as I mentioned. For infrastructure as a service, we have created a production-ready OpenStack cloud platform called Virtuozzo Hybrid Infrastructure. So we have CSPs and MSPs using that to sell private cloud, public and hybrid cloud hosting, as well as Kubernetes-as-a-Service, Desktop-as-a-Service, backup and DR as a service. Our customers find it's a much easier and cost-effective alternative than trying to build the platform themselves, or sell cloud based on something like Nutanix or VMware. 

And, we have our Platform as a Service solutions, too. They are based on application containers and enable providers to service the world of DevOps and SaaS, companies that need database as a service, Magento as a service, and applications like WordPress - super-scalable, with automatic clusterization, integration with CI/CD workflows, and true usage-based pricing (which you don't get with AWS). 

VMblog:  Tell us more about your solutions for WordPress hosting? 

Morgan:  Our WordPress solution is really cool. When it comes to hosting a WordPress site, for a customer, you only have two options. You can do it the old-fashioned way, with a cPanel shared hosting setup, maybe a VPS. 

That's fine for small projects, but if you're building a business on WordPress you need more scale and automation, more security, multi-region, CDN, clustered topologies... you can get that from the large managed WordPress hosts, but it gets expensive fast. Until now, there has been no middle option. So, what we've built is an easy way for web hosts to offer a premium WordPress hosting service, with all of those features, and do it at half the cost of the big managed WordPress providers. 

VMblog:  What was the big takeaway from this year's CloudFest conference?

Morgan:  Meeting with our partners is absolutely crucial, being able to discuss their wants and needs and what they're seeing in the market. CloudFest is a great place to do that. It's also about the knowledge being shared here. All of the speakers added a tremendous amount of value to everyone in the industry, and you can hear how to solve that problem you have, that you didn't realize everybody else had as well.

VMblog:  What's next on the agenda for Virtuozzo this year?

Morgan:  This is actually what I was speaking about in our keynote. There is a huge need, and a huge opportunity for service providers to be able to compete at the same level and the same scale as the hyperscalers, the big public cloud providers. Why is that? It's so that the Internet is the democracy it was always meant to be, and independent service providers have a voice, a seat at the table, and can make money. So that end customers have a choice, they can get cloud services that are easy, and affordable, and accessible from any local provider, not just two or three faceless corporations. And the way we're doing that is empowering all of our partners to work together, to be successful in selling cloud services.


Published Monday, March 27, 2023 7:30 AM by David Marshall
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