The good folks at FastScale Technology contacted me to let me know about an announcement they were making today. I had a chance to speak with Lynn LeBlanc, Fastscale CEO, and Richard Offer, VP of Engineering. They brought me up to date on FastScale Composer™ Suite, and introduced me to their new Virtual Manager for VMware Environments.
Quick rundown on FastScale Composer Suite
In FastScale's words, here's what the Composer Suite does.
Software environments can be streamlined and built automatically, on-demand and then provisioned in seconds — all without the need to build and manage golden images. FastScale Composer™ Suite delivers a new generation of software virtualization and provisioning including:
- Bare metal provisioning in seconds
- 99% smaller software environments
- Dynamically streamlined software stacks
- Automatic patch & configuration management
- Easily configurable security policies
- Intuitive & flexible administration
In my words, FastScale Composer makes it possible to view an organization's industry standard systems as a dynamic pool of compute resources. This makes it straightforward for the organization to run any application at any time. What's interesting is that software environments are resident on servers only for the duration of the job in process and only the necessary code and data to support that software environment are loaded. This means that much less hardware resources to typically required to support an application. Once the application finishes what it's doing, the server is available for automatic provisioning of a new software environment.
So, what's new?
FastScale has added a new capability to its Composer Suite, FastScale Virtual Manager™. This extends the suite so that it can do the same magic for virtual machine environments (including VMware ESX Server, VMware Server an VMware Workstation) that its been doing for physical systems. Because only necessary code and data are delivered to the virtual machine, benchmarks have shown that a server can support as much as 3 times the number of virtual machines without degrading performance. They've also tested boot time. Using FastScale Virtual Manager, a physical system can boot 40 FastScale virtual machines in the same time that a single environment without Virtual Manager.
Organizations using virtual machine software and management software for virtualized environments with the goal of application agility and consolidation would be well advised to become familiar with this technology. It might be a very useful addition to an organization already using another product to orchestrate development, test and production environments.