FAQs_Hero.jpg
Have questions about Markley Cloud Services? Answers to many common issues can be found here. For additional information, please contact us at sales@markleygroup.com

GENERAL

What is Markley Cloud Services SLA?

Where are Markley Cloud Services hosted?

Markley Cloud Services is currently hosted in New England’s highest-density network zone—at the intersection of all major fiber routes in the region. We also have a data center in Lowell, Mass and resources in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas. Our data center suites feature a minimum of N+1 infrastructure redundancy, unparalleled electrical distribution systems, access to over 75 network providers, and financial-grade security systems and processes including biometric access control and 24X7 video surveillance. Our data center suites are SSAE16 certified.

PRICING

What pricing models do you have?

Reservation Pool is a fixed price model where we reserve capacity based on your total virtual server requirements. For example, if you have ten VMs which require a total capacity of 20 GHz of processing, 40 GB RAM, and 1TB of storage, then that amount of resources would be pre-provisioned and shared by your VM’s in a virtual datacenter. MCS creates a reservation pool so your organization can consume these resources as you wish. They are secured for your company only. Reservation pools are typically contracted with 1, 2 or 3 year terms and volume-based discounts are available.
  • CPU processing power
  • GB of RAM
  • GB or TB of storage
  • Bandwidth per GB – charged on data transfer in and out of our network.

Markley Cloud Services customers subscribing to a pool of resources have the ability to create the exact sized virtual guest within the pool instead of having to select a pre-defined instance. This allows our customers to leverage resources in a much more cost-effective and efficient manner.

LICENSING

Is Microsoft Windows licensing included in the templates?

Customers have the ability to deploy Windows Server from Markley Cloud Services templates for a monthly fee, which may vary depending on which edition of Windows.

Do you have additional Microsoft licenses or do I need to bring my own?

Markley Cloud Services is a Microsoft partner with access to SPLA licensing, which means you don't need to provide Windows licensing. MCS can also provide additional licenses such as SQL Server, Exchange, or Terminal Server on a monthly subscription model.

OPERATING SYSTEM SUPPORT

What operating systems do you support?

We support many distributions of Linux as well as Windows Server 2008 R2 or greater. A full list of the operating systems we support can be found in VMware's Guest OS Compatibility Guide.

What editions of Microsoft Server do you support and what is the cost?

Markley Cloud Services uses SPLA licensing within our infrastructure allowing customers to lease any version of Windows Server on a monthly basis.

Interoperability

Can I simultaneously leverage my local capacity as well as Markley Cloud Services capacity?

Yes. Whether you have resources local to your office or resources colocated at our facilities, MCS gives you the ability to connect your environment to the Markley Cloud Services cloud infrastructure using a number of secure methods such as site-to-site VPN or virtual cross connect.

With your solution, is it possible to upload our own .iso files and boot the servers on the cloud from such iso images?

Yes, a customer can utilize an .iso file by uploading it from a local environment to a private catalog within vCloud Director then mounting it to an existing or new VM. This enables you to boot from or install an OS as you wish.

Architecture

What underlying software is used to deliver Markley Cloud Services?

MCS is a VMware Service Provider as part of the vCloud Air Network partner program, and Markley Cloud Services is powered by VMware vCloud technology including:

  • VMware vSphere Enterprise Plus
  • VMware vCloud Director for Service Providers
  • VMware vShield Edge
  • VMware NSX

What underlying hardware is used to deliver Markley Cloud Services?

Markley Cloud Services uses enterprise-class blade servers powered by the latest Intel Xeon processorshigh performance, highly available, storage systems and fully redundant network hardware from major manufacturers. Markley Cloud Services' physical infrastructure and services are designed and implemented with no single point of failure, featuring a high level of redundancy and performance. The data center network is based on an end-to-end 10Gbps fabric with multiple 10Gbps links to upstream providers. Additional architectural details can be provided by your Markley Cloud Services Solutions team.

Does your cloud environment use a secure multi-tenant architecture?

Yes. Our public cloud offerings are designed with security and isolation at the forefront. All customers are provisioned with dedicated VLANs and logically isolated resource pools. Markley Cloud Services customers have the ability to assign virtual data center access rights to administrative via role-based access control within the self-service web-portal.

Does your cloud infrastructure feature a redundant configuration to tolerate any single equipment failure and ensure high availability?

Yes. All Markley Cloud Services cloud infrastructure and services can tolerate at least one failure. Power, cooling, security, and generators are maintained and managed by SSAE16 certified facilities in the United States. The Markley Cloud Services network infrastructure features redundant paths and devices sitting in the core, edge, and distribution. All ESXi hosts are provisioned in HA clusters, and all storage systems have redundant controllers and data paths with local data protection using RAID and copy-on-write snapshot features for performance and resiliency.

Do my virtual resource pools run on customer-dedicated physical servers or on shared physical servers?

Customer workloads run in virtual machines on shared ESXi clusters separated logically by virtual datacenters (vDC) or resource pools for each customer. VMware provides security features that enable complete isolation between customer VMs and virtual networks. For customers requiring dedicated physical resources, please contact MCS Professional Services for further consultation.

MANAGEMENT

What management tools will work with Markley Cloud Services' IaaS environment?

Customers have access to several interfaces, which allow them to manage the provisioning, modification, or deletion of servers, networking, or portal users. This includes web-based access as well as  vCloud API access.  If customers have additional agent or network-based monitoring or management tools for their systems running in MCS they will be able to use these seamlessly. Management or monitoring tools requiring host, SAN, or vCenter access are not available for customer use.

Who deploys and manages the cloud resources within a virtual datacenter?

Markley Cloud Services provisions resource pools and virtual networks within the customer’s organization, which the customer may then manage via a web-based portal or API in order to create, modify, and delete virtual machines, users, and networking within their environment. This model is ideal for customers looking to outsource their IT infrastructure but keep control and management of their cloud environment.

Can servers and applications be deployed and managed programmatically with scripting?

Yes, Markley Cloud Services supports the vCloud API, which is an easy-to-use, RESTful programming interface. Using the vCloud API you can perform almost any function programmatically from a script including starting and stopping vApps and VMs, deploying new vApps, configuring vApps and other functions. For additional details see the vCloud API documentation.

Self-service

How do you see the virtual machine console?

Within the vCloud Director user interface, a user can open a console to virtual guests by going to the "My Cloud" tab and clicking on the thumbnail of the server for which they want to open a console window. Click here for further details.

How do we access our infrastructure securely?

VMware NSX Edge is integrated with vCloud Director, and has support for IPsec VPN using cryptography standards such as 3DES and AES, which are supported by most firewall vendors. Additionally, those customers who are colocating with us have the option to establish a dedicated physical link to their infrastructure on site for the utmost in security and performance.

How long does it take to launch a server?

Virtual machines deployed from preconfigured templates are ready for use just minutes after being added to a vApp and powered on for the first time.

Templates

What software is included with virtual machine templates in the public service catalog?

The base OS is included for whatever server is being deployed e.g. CentOS, Windows Server. Once deployed, management of the OS as well as any applications that may be installed are the responsibility of the customer. Markley Cloud Services can provide some application licensing at an additional cost.

Can we upload our templates into the vCloud environment?

Customers can easily upload existing templates to Markley Cloud Services using two different options. The self-service interface allows users to upload an OVF template through the Catalogs tab in vCloud Director. Those who want to reduce transit costs or save time for large images may send a portable device containing your data to Markley Cloud Services using MCS Express.

Do you have predefined images we can deploy?

vCloud Director has a concept of "catalogs" to hold virtual machine templates.  There are two types of catalogs; public and private.  Markley Cloud Services maintains a public catalog containing pre-built base operating system images.  Customers may also maintain their own private catalogs to import their own templates or create new templates for their own use.

Networking

What type of load balancing options does Markley Cloud Services offer?

MCS offers both physical and virtual load balancers for customers that require high availability for web-based applications. Markley Cloud Services features A10 Networks for physical load balancing, which supports multi-tenancy with the use of network partitions.  Virtual load balancers are powered by VMware NSX Edge.  Both support L4-L7 functionality.

What options do I have for connectivity?

All Markley Cloud Services datacenters have burstable capacity for VMs of up to 10Gb per second. Additional connectivity options include the ability for a customer to use a virtual cross connect to connect directly to their existing infrastructure colocated in our facilities.

Can I set any IP on the internal network?

All Markley Cloud Services customers have access to completely dedicated and isolated firewall appliances and subnets. This means the customer can select any internal range for their networking needs. Customers using cross connects may also use their own IP address space and firewalls if desired.

How much bandwidth can be provided?

1TB outbound traffic is included in your monthly bill. Customers may subscribe to additional bandwidth for an extra fee.

What network topologies can be deployed inside my virtual datacenter?

Markley Cloud Services has a number of standard networking options to fit your needs.

  • Direct Internet Access - Workloads are configured with globally-routable IP addresses and are connected directly to the Internet without any perimeter security.
     
  • Network Address Translation (NAT) - Workloads reside on RFC1918 non-routable IP address space and can access the Internet via NAT to a globally-routable IP address. Additional self-service network services are available using this topology such as NAT, SPI firewall, IPsec VPN, and HTTP/S load balancing.
     
  • Isolated - Workloads reside on RFC1918 non-routable address space that is not directly accessible from any other network.
     
  • MCS Connect - Physically connect your network into Markley Cloud Services for increased security and performance. Layer 2 access mode or 802.1Q VLAN trunking. Use your own IP addresses on Markley Cloud Services workloads without traversing the Internet. Get LAN speeds, zero latency, and zero bandwidth charges!*
Direct Internet Access
Direct Internet Access
Network Address Translation (NAT)
Network Address
Translation (NAT)
Isolated
Isolated
MCS Connect
MCS Connect Direct
MCS Connect
MCS Connect NAT