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FreeBSD 13.0-R now available

The OrionVM Wholesale Cloud platform now proudly supports FreeBSD 13.0-RELEASE as an OS template. Partners can now enable this template for their customers in their Cloud Administration portal under the Templates tab.

Existing 12.x template users can upgrade using freebsd-update or building a new world. Refer to the Handbook for details.

Version 13 is a spectacular release of this Unix-like operating system. It includes a rewritten routing stack and bridge updates for even better network throughput performance, native ZFS disk encryption, as well as LLVM and Linuxulator improvements. You can read the full release notes on the FreeBSD website.

FreeBSD is a compelling OS to check out, especially for Linux users who are looking to upskill and add new capabilities to their cloud infrastructure. FreeBSD’s jails are a lightweight and elegant container solution. OpenZFS is the world’s most trustworthy file system with a simple interface, enterprise-grade features, and deep FreeBSD toolchain integration. Linux users should feel right at home at the FreeBSD console, and with its pkg(8) package manager.

FreeBSD is functionally supported on the OrionVM cloud platform the same as Linux VMs, with live attach/detach of network interfaces, IP addresses, and SSH keys. The template is configured with OpenZFS by default, allowing for flexible disk resizes.

Spin one up and console in to try!

Data Center and Cloud trends: profitable enterprise-grade DaaS and security solutions that are easy to manage

Our team sat down in a recent webinar with cloud security and desktop as a service (DaaS) experts, along with DATA3, a premier data center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. We discussed the business outcomes and benefits of deploying DaaS and security solutions from Parallels RAS and WatchGuard on the OrionVM platform. Emerging technology, wholesale brand control, and marketing assistance are now enabling significant opportunities, allowing MSPs to go to market and achieve differentiation with products under their own name. Recurring revenue and wholesale discount levers translate to a lucrative business model and significant end-user cost savings. OrionVM clients can instantly leverage solutions such as Parallels RAS for DaaS and WatchGuard UTM to deliver secure, polished virtual desktops and environments to their customers. The team also discussed several important industry trends where enterprise security and DaaS can position MSPs to succeed.

Four important trends in the market today:

  1. The security challenge of BYOD. WatchGuard North Central Sales Engineer Ryan Poutre shared his insights: “Almost every week I’m asked ‘I’ve got workers working remotely and keeping up on hardware availability for laptops, or I want to use tablets or personal devices’. Anytime someone says I want to use a personal device or a tablet or their phone is scary from a security perspective, because allowing full access back to a network with a non-corporate device exposes risks. This underscores the value Parallel RAS can offer; a bring your own device platform that eliminates the security concerns. You control things like malware not spreading from a personal device into your network because you need to get access to that Word document or that file share. If you are looking for a BYOD remote user solution that doesn’t compromise your security, this is a really good fit for that kind of application.”  
  2. Device compatibility across an array of devices, especially in our new work from home culture. Victor Fiss, Director, Sales Engineer with Parallels RAS discussed this important security and remote access topic. “When everybody started going to work from home, people started buying super cheap laptops or tablets, and they have the expectation that all of their core company applications will run there, especially on tablets or mobile devices. The question becomes how do you stream the apps? There are also the security considerations. We have the ability to lock down, and with WatchGuard also create a geo-fence, so you can detect where the users are coming from. You can even enhance the security of users connected to my environment in the middle of the night, so we can report that information back to IT and set certain alarms to try to identify specific trends. That’s very important and actually spiked a lot since the pandemic started. People think they’re doing the right things and that’s why we’re here to help to make sure policies are put in place securing the environments and making sure all of those buttons are checked to make sure applications and sometimes compliance is set in place. A lot of people are working from home, so how do you control where the files are? We are resolving this particular problem where everything is hosted in a data center. You have total control of that information.”  
  3. A perception of market share saturation may be leaving money on the table. David Harrelson, COO and EVP with Data3, shared: “A lot of MSPs may be thinking that how much market share is left because cloud’s been around for a little while and a lot of their customers may have already made some kind of a decision, but Data Center Frontier has shared some compelling statistics highlighting the huge increases in cloud-based computing. Everything that we’ve already seen, they’re saying we will see an increase over that in the next two to three years. Similarly, Cisco is predicting that 94 percent of all workloads and compute instances will be processed in cloud data centers by 2021. There’s still a lot of room for growth in the market.”
  4. The view from the seat of the CFO is worth keeping in mind as MSPs make plans. David continued his observations on industry perceptions: “The mindset of the CFO is why should I continue to spend my CapEx on infrastructure that has to be replaced in three to four years? Why do I want to continue to spend my CapEx in that way? Businesses are going to continue to move to the cloud. The question will become: is the MSP going to remain relevant in that decision-making process? The mega hosts are marketing to the customer base of the MSPs and telling them that they are the solution. The reality is we’ve actually begun to see the pendulum swing back because MSPs are getting frustrated by the alluring speech that customers are getting to move to the mega host. This is due in part to the fact that once they are there, they are getting nickel and dimed to the point where they almost want to go back to the on-premise infrastructure that they just got rid of. For MSPs the MicroPoP, the regional or edge-based data center is the solution worth considering.”  

We’ve done a lot of work leveraging and integrating the latest technological innovations in cloud IT to make them easily consumable in a single platform. That sets MSPs, resellers and data centers up to win. Companies can deliver a premium solution to market, below standard MSRP, with a simple deployment model, and the performance and resiliency of premium cloud IT. Unlike the large incumbents with their frustrating and vague support, we’re invested in your success and treat you as a partner, offering support and guidance you need to succeed. To learn more about the new MicroPop offering please visit us at orionvm.com/micropop.

On the Road with WatchGuard. A Cloud Security Discussion.

It’s been a whirlwind few weeks for the OrionVM team as we’ve wrapped up several events across the US and Australia with our technology partner WatchGuard. Our executives and engineers presented our Wholesale Cloud IaaS offering alongside WatchGuard at their All-In event to packed rooms of senior executives, sales, and marketing from IT providers and businesses using WatchGuard. We also got to meet many of our partners who have been able to leverage the OrionVM cloud with WatchGuard to deliver advanced network security solutions. 

There is a new secure way of bringing virtual instances to market. As we announced earlier this year, a newly bundled WatchGuard FireboxV offering enables channel partners to quickly and easily gain cloud competencies on our IaaS platform that also boast the latest, best-in-breed security offerings. 

Among the discussed challenges was how IT providers will secure workloads as the industry shifts from an on-premise hardware model, to delivering subscription-based cloud services. We explored the current landscape of the cloud market today and highlighted a few of the advantages of working with OrionVM and WatchGuard.

The OrionVM Wholesale Cloud platform seamlessly integrates into these deployments, as if our platform was architected specifically with WatchGuard in mind. It achieves this in three key areas.

  • Superior performance. WatchGuard has been thoroughly optimized to run on OrionVM, compared to other public clouds. It is a fully supported template offered on the platform to all partners.
  • Simplified network configuration. OrionVM does not impose Network Address Translation (NAT) on interfaces like every other cloud provider. WatchGuard behaves like a physical appliance with public IPs directly on their NIC, simplifying deployments and allowing easy configuration imports. Engineers at the conferences admitted this was the killer feature.
  • Elegant and flexible topologies. OrionVM networks operate on OSI Layer 2, allowing colocated hardware and OrionVM cloud servers to share the same network without additional routers. A virtual WatchGuard appliance can be deployed to protect your entire infrastructure: physical and virtual.
  • Cost-effective deployments. Private transit is unmetered between the OrionVM cloud and private networks, including cross connects, colocated hardware, and MPLS. And without additional routers or virtual servers to mesh Layer 3 networks, you save on deployment costs.

For channel partners selling cloud and security services, the channel-only play for WatchGuard and OrionVM meant they’re both complementary services.

Want to know more? We have a bundled OrionVM Starter Pack with WatchGuard starting at $499 for $1,000 Credit with no on-boarding fees and optional WatchGuard Basic Security suite. Visit us here for more details and to schedule a call.