We often get asked if we are a “Hadoop as a Service" (also knows as HaaS) company. Although we provide infrastructure that our customers run Hadoop off of, we do not provide a point-n-click Hadoop product. In this post, we’ll go over the differences between HaaS and what Bit Refinery provides which is Big Data IaaS. (Infrastructure as a Service)
HaaS companies offer a “fully baked" version of Hadoop. It is usually their own version of Hadoop that follows closely to the original Apache Hadoop version. Some benefits of HaaS offerings are:
- Managed Hadoop – No need to hire a sysadmin
- Ease of use – Built to get started quickly
- No hardware/infrastructure – Just add/remove servers as you need it. No Capex
- Support – Each company has a team of Hadoop experts to help when needed
Bit Refinery believes there is plenty of room out there for all types of Big Data companies. However, we also believe there are lots of companies out there that want to “own" their own data and not be a victim of “data lock-in" as we call it.
Data Lock-In is where a company has a substantial amount of your data and it’s very difficult to get some or all of it back. They impose fees on data transfer out of their clouds even if you could transfer it in a decent timeframe.
Bit Refinery believes that as we go forward in this Big Data future together, you should own your own data. Period. If you want to retrieve some or all of it, we fully support “data shutting" which is the method of shipping a large storage device (NAS) to one of our data centers and we’ll hook it right up to your infrastructure. You can even use this method to take periodic snapshots of your data.
With more and more companies choosing to have one or two very large companies holding the keys to one of their core assets (their data), it’s no wonder people are looking for an alternative. Sure, these companies offer a rich ecosystem of tools but in the end is it worth it to have all of your eggs in one basket?
Another aspect where Bit Refinery shines is cost. We know cost isn’t everything and you usually “get what you pay for" so why is this such a differentiator with us? A few years ago, we looked at why Hadoop was created in the first place and this was an easy one. Hadoop was created to run on commodity hardware and not $20,000 Cisco servers.
True Commodity Hardware
We see companies similar to ours and even HaaS companies trying to host Big Data applications on servers that were made for running mission critical applications with dual power supplies, gold plated racks and switch gear. Now, don’t get us wrong, we don’t use Netgear switches and Walmart servers but we do use commodity equipment that is very stable and reliable. (good read: Building a computer the Google way) The same servers we offer for $300/mo are over $1,000/mo with Amazon! (64GB Ram, 10TB and dual 6 core processors)
So, it really comes down to flexibility and price. HaaS providers offer a smooth experience when using Hadoop but you give up flexibility and price. With Bit Refinery, you can use any flavor of Hadoop or any other Big Data application with a much lower cost point than any other provider. Plus, you don’t get “DATA LOCK-IN!".