I have been constantly asked the question: why don’t we use cloud? (Surprisingly also many from business/sales people, Amazon etc. really did a good job in PR because I would never ask my VP of Sales “did you try this sales methodology?”).
I used to argue on many different reasons, like complexity, no guarantee of service, slowness, security etc. Then I got tired, and found out this simple, most effective way, just consider one MySQL instance (we have 8-core, 32GB memory, purely Intel X-25E SSD drives for MySQL, about $8K). On Amazon EC2, this is at least comparable to this:
“High-Memory Double Extra Large Instance 34.2 GB of memory, 13 EC2 Compute Units (4 virtual cores with 3.25 EC2 Compute Units each), 850 GB of local instance storage, 64-bit platform”
How much does it cost on EC2 to run it for 2 years? $1/hour * 24 * 365 * 2 = $17,520. EC2 pricing. Also, EC2 doesn’t save your on personnel cost, you still need to have ops engineers (physically deal with your own server will take 2 extra hour than EC2 I guess 🙂
To run my own server in colo for two years, you might add $200/mo * 24 = $4,800 operation costs (rack, power, cooling). That is still only $12,800 total. End of discussion.
Needless to say, I have 4 more cores, and at least 3x better I/O performance, which also means less nodes are required, as well as simpler application logic and operations.
Oh, did I mention that EC2 is a wild zoo? Recently people are telling me that they can’t keep a TCP connection open for more than 10 minutes there. Imagine what that will do to your system.