Seeding the Cloud with Open Source, Standing Cloud Makes It Easy

The "instant on" of the cloud is alluring but can be elusive, with Standing Cloud setting up open source apps is as easy as just add water

The proliferation of public cloud applications is happening before our eyes. Open source apps have been grabbing more than their fair share of the cloud space and for good reason. The cloud and open source are perfect together. A new company, Standing Cloud wants to make it even easier to set up and start using open source apps hosted in the cloud. Their motto is "make it easy". With Standing Cloud it can't get any easier than this.

Dave Jilk is the CEO and founder of Standing Cloud. I spoke with Dave and this is the way he explains what Standing Cloud is about, 

"Open source developers and IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) providers define 'easy' as 'nothing too vexing for an adept professional.'  But that's not how online end-users define it.  In early testing, we found that users didn't even want to answer the simple questions posed by the applications *after* they were installed, such as the name of the site.  They just wanted to get in and try the application."

Standing Cloud has a large (and growing larger every day) line up of open source applications that you can install and  turn on in literally a matter of a few minutes. The screen shots below are what apps are currently offered.

A user registers, picks out which of the open source applications they want to install and set up. Standing Cloud can them automatically pick a public cloud provider from their line up or you can pick one.  Standing Cloud will tell you how long the wait is to set up the application and if there are servers available for each of the providers.  Literally that is it!

You are then given your log in credentials to your app and you are off and running. I set up a Word Press install and was typing my first post in about 3 minutes. I installed a few plug ins, updated the Word Press version and changed the color scheme in that time too! I let Standing Cloud pick the cloud host for me and it chose Go Grid.  Above is a screen shot with the cloud providers currently offered.

Standing Cloud removes one of the biggest barriers to open source in the cloud. The install and configuration. As Jilk says, "There are two learning curves with any software application: one for installing and another for using it. Why would you want to learn how to install an application if you don't even know you will use?  That's the idea behind the Trial Edition."

The Trial Edition of Standing Cloud is a free trial. You can pick any of the open source apps and a cloud provider and you will be set up in moments. After a period of inactivity though, your app is backed up and shut down. You can reactivate it when you log in again.  The idea of the trial is to allow you to try these open source apps and decide if you want to use them going forward without any money spent or time learning to install.

By the end of April, Standing Cloud will be offering its "community edition" which will allow you to install and operate open source apps permanently for a very reasonable fee.  Standing Cloud will be offering other cloud based, open source packages throughout the year.

After hearing so much about the cloud and how it will change computing, using Standing Cloud for the first time I had a glimpse into what instant on cloud computing can be.  The developers have certainly hit the mark on their "make it easy" mantra.

Open source applications installed and configured instantly in the cloud, can it get any easier and any cooler than that?

Please visit the Google Subnet home page for more news, blogs and podcasts. Sign up for the weekly Google newsletter.

More blog posts from Alan Shimel:

Subscribe to all Google Subnet bloggers or Follow Google Subnet on Twitter

Check out Alan Shimel's Podcast and other blogs, too.

Join the Network World communities on Facebook and LinkedIn to comment on topics that are top of mind.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.