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Paraleap Technologies Scales with Azure

Igor Papirov is a cofounder of Paraleap Technologies, which he started in 2010 to market AzureWatch, a product that dynamically adjusts the number of compute instances dedicated to Azure users based on real-time demand. In other words, it scales Azure up and down as needed.

Paraleap has no venture funding, no debt and a very nontraditional sales channel consisting of social media, blogs, Internet feeds and presumably, people wearing sandwich boards and shouting through megaphones.

As for competing with Amazon's EC2 product, Papirov says AzureWatch has the edge, because its platform-as-a-service (PaaS) technology abstracts users further away from the complexities of Azure than does EC2's Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) approach. "EC2 does not entirely abstract users from dealing with issues relating to the OS, configuration and management," he states.

The company, which turned between 60 and 70 of its beta testers into full-fledged customers, also has something of an angel investor in Microsoft, which has not directly invested in Paraleap, but has developed a very friendly relationship that includes joint presentations, promotions, key referrals and a keen interest in the start-up's technology. "Microsoft has taken a great interest in our company," Papirov declares. "We've been in contact with them since the early days of beta."

AzureWatch installs out of the box in 10 minutes without a single line of code, spins compute instances up or down in compliance with custom rules, and has a powerful monitoring capability that watches any number of queues while tracking any number of performance metrics across all compute instances. And it does all this automatically via its self-provisioning capability that eliminates over-provisoning and the need for human monitoring.

The product employs the popular pay-for-what-you-use approach based on five plans corresponding to Azure instance sizes.

This is a product that just seems to make sense, but the question is, how far is it ahead of its time? Papirov admits that Azure is a year away from widespread corporate acceptance, and by then, I'd say the chances are pretty good that Redmond will have made him a deal he couldn't refuse for his interesting and innovative company.

Posted by Bruce Hoard on 02/08/2011 at 12:48 PM


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