NEM and Expanse Blockchain Automation Come to CenturyLink Cloud

May 23, 2016
By Chris Meyer, Product Analyst

Blockchain Coin

CenturyLink Cloud® announces new automation to deploy blockchain nodes for both NEM and Expanse services.

What is a Blockchain and why is the Technology Significant?

Blockchain is a catch-all term for a shared immutable cryptographic distributed database. In this special kind of database the data, commonly referred to as the 'ledger', is encrypted for security and permanently stored in numerous systems across geographically varied sites for diversity and redundancy.

One of the top struggles of IT departments today is making data frictionless to consume by their customers, internal and external, yet doing so in a secure manner. With today’s technology and services those goals can be difficult to balance. Blockchain technology, however, can mitigate these concerns. By storing the data in an encrypted 'ledger' that spans numerous servers across the globe the data will be readably accessible at all times and secured against malicious modification.

The applications for blockchain technology interacting with our daily lives could be limitless - from making land-records more secure and invulnerable to fraudulent behavior, facilitating secure communication between smart devices (IoT), to promoting real-time financial transactions between banks -- the possibilities go on and on. With just this small glimpse into the practical uses for blockchain, it is easy...

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How the IoT is Changing the Freight Industry

May 11, 2016
By Jonathan Townsend

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Noted entrepreneur, investor, author, public speaker, and Internet personality Gary Vaynerchuk once addressed an audience member's comparison of his innovative idea and service as the 'Uber of a burgeoning industry' by interjecting with a simple, yet valid statement: "Everybody is calling everything the Uber of everything." Regarding the impacts the Internet of Things (IoT) has on many industries, such comparisons have become day-to-day realities in the 21st century.

As an industry-affecting concept, the IoT unlocks endless capabilities that have ramped up data cultivation and analysis to the point where ideas have become industry-standard practices. This is readily apparent in regards to trucking fleets and shipping practices. As noted in this CenturyLinkVoice article, "Nearly 70 percent of all freight moved in the United States travels by truck, a haul that totals an eye-popping 10 billion tons each year, according to the American Trucking Associations, a trade group. Without trucks, the American economy brakes to a halt."

As we start integrating the IoT with the fleet industry, which fuels and feeds nations while facilitating trade and shipping on a global scale, we could see the beginning stages of government and private sector trucking company partnerships with innovative companies like Uber, Tesla, and Google (to...

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Benefits of Cloud Load Balancing

May 9, 2016
By Thomas Broadwell

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Businesses large and small are leveraging the cloud to run a variety of applications that are critical to their success. Tools for sales and customer management, inventory management, expense tracking, file storage and sharing, websites, and custom applications are just a few of the many cloud-hosted services that keep businesses running. The scalable and global nature of the cloud helps to create affordable and flexible applications in a web hosting solution for most businesses today. Since servers host these applications in the cloud, it only makes sense to load balance the servers in the cloud as well.

Proven Performance

Real-world application performance can be unpredictable. To ensure maximum uptime and reliability, the CenturyLink Cloud® platform offers a portfolio of cloud load balancers to meet the unique requirements of your apps. Less complex applications can deploy shared load balancers, while more involved apps can use dedicated load balancers that support advanced OSI Model Layer 4 - Transport and Layer 7 - Application rules. SSL offloading is also available, from 100 Mbps to 500 Mbps.

Cloud Load Balancing from CenturyLink uses a multi-tenant, scalable, and programmable infrastructure presented to the customer as a service. The Dedicated Load Balancer uses Citrix® NetScaler®, the industry’s leading web...

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Hadoop Add-On Components Made Easy: Click to Install

May 5, 2016
By Daniel Morton

Big Data Footprint

Hadoop is one of the hottest enterprise big data technologies in the cloud today. To make big data in the cloud easier for our customers, 8 Cloudera Hadoop Add-on Services are now available for CenturyLink Cloud®. Through an ecosystem of open-source components, Hadoop Add-on Services fundamentally changes the way enterprises store, process, and analyze data to solve all kinds of big data problems.

For many, Hadoop is too difficult to deploy and manage. Automating a four-node cluster can be a daunting task. But not with the Cloudera Blueprint for CenturyLink Cloud! We've taken the complexity out of Hadoop by automating the dozens of deployment steps associated with a new cluster environment. We reduced all these steps to just a few clicks of the mouse.

Benefits of Cloudera Blueprint for CenturyLink Cloud

CenturyLink's Cloudera Blueprint simplifies the process of installing, configuring, and adding components for an entire Hadoop cluster. The Blueprints come in 1 and 4 server configurations. If you need more than 4 nodes, additional nodes can be added in minutes by upgrading the Cloudera Blueprint version.

  • Log into the Control Portal. Control Portal
  • Search for Cloudera in the Blueprints library.
  • Click the Blueprint version and cluster configuration you want.
  • Fill in the appropriate details.
  • Select your Cloudera version and
  • ...

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    The Nexus Chameleon on CenturyLink Cloud

    May 4, 2016
    By Tom Coffing

    Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud® blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how they leverage our platform to enable customer success. This week’s guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Tom Coffing, President and CEO at Coffing Data Warehousing.

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    Become a Cloud Rock Star

    The best kept secret in cloud computing just might be the Nexus Chameleon software. It has been designed and developed for over a decade to integrate all databases as if they were one giant system. Coffing Data Warehousing is excited to be providing its amazing service on the Century Link Cloud platform.

    One of the best complements we ever received was from a Vice President at the world’s largest bank who said, “Nexus is so powerful and easy-to-use that it puts the business user on the same playing field as the Data Scientist”.

    The Challenges Solved by the Nexus Chameleon

    The Nexus Chameleon has automated the most difficult challenges in today’s computing environment by doing things nobody else in the world is doing, but yet doing so with the click of the mouse.

    Imagine that you have transactional legacy systems such as DB2, Oracle, and SQL Server and, on top of that, you...

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    Sharpening the Cloudy Arrow

    May 4, 2016
    By Mike Kane

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    Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud® blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how they leverage our platform to enable customer success. This week’s guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Mike Kane, Sr. Product Marketing Manager, for Dyn.

    We’ve all done it at one time or another. You know… drawing a fuzzy arrow between two system components without really knowing exactly how the data is going to get from point A to point B. Almost every reference architecture scribbled on a white board has at least one such cloudy arrow. If the information has to travel between customers and users, as well as cloud and data center assets, typically the path is usually not well understood. Yet these paths can have as much impact on service performance as anything else. The situation requires deeper examination.

    The chances are, unless you’re specialized in network operations, you may not be completely aware of the nuances and challenges involved in moving data and procedure calls on the Internet. It’s time to get on it though. As your organization transitions from on-premises infrastructure to cloud-based and Hybrid architectures, you will likely find yourself relying on...

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    Meet Runner, the Newest Multi-Cloud Automation and Orchestration Service

    May 2, 2016
    By Chris Kent, Product Owner

    CenturyLink Cloud Runner from CenturyLink Cloud on Vimeo.

    CenturyLink is excited to announce the launch of Runner, a configuration management and orchestration service that works across Hybrid-IT architectures and diverse cloud environments. Runner addresses the potential time and resource drain confronting organizations that want their own private clouds. It reduces private cloud complexity and administrative workload by allowing for fast and easy automation of infrastructure in any cloud or data center. It offers fast, easy automation and orchestration on the CenturyLink Cloud® Platform, as well as on third-party cloud providers and on-premise infrastructures and devices. With Runner, you can quickly provision and modify resources on any environment.

    What is Runner?

    Runner is automation made simple! Runner exposes an open source automation and orchestration engine as a service. On top of the engine, we’ve created custom services and APIs to enhance job execution capabilities. Runner was created to enable users to quickly and efficiently manage their infrastructure, wherever it is. Runner securely connects customers to their infrastructure whether on the CenturyLink Platform, other clouds, or private data centers, allowing for both push and pull-based communication. Whether provisioning, configuring, or deploying, Runner makes it easy to quickly create and run jobs, report on the...

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    Migration and DR to CLC: Lessons Learned from the Front Lines

    April 25, 2016
    By Gautam Thockchom

    Periodically, we turn over control of the CenturyLink Cloud® blog to members of our certified technology Ecosystem to share how they leverage our platform to enable customer success. This week’s guest author from the Cloud Marketplace Provider Program is Gautam Thockchom for Sureline Systems.

    Sureline is leading the way with a complete, easy-to-deploy application mobility solution that is flexible, provides the highest quality recovery points and replicates them remotely for safety, delivers zero data loss failover and failback, and provides the ability to test disaster recovery (DR) plans easily and frequently without locking the customer to a specific cloud. We're an industry leader in cloud migration, DR software, and business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) solutions. Sureline fundamentally solves the problem of any-to-any DR and migration, enabling seamless data migration and DR from any environment -- physical or virtual -- to CenturyLink Cloud.

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    In our experience moving customers to the cloud and protecting thousands of machines on the cloud, we've noticed that customers are quite serious about beginning the conversion process. However, a lot of cloud projects are slow to start because of a simple reason -- the question of how to move to the cloud is typically not answered clearly.

    In order...

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    CenturyLink Cloud Price Drops: More Scale, More Automation & We Pass the Savings on to You

    April 20, 2016
    By Jared Ruckle, Product Owner

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    CenturyLink is pleased to announce price reductions for several of our flagship public cloud services around the world.

    Highlights:

    The CenturyLink Cloud® online estimator, TCO tool, and product pages have been updated to reflect our lower prices. The lower prices are effective for customers retroactive to April 1, 2016. And the customer invoices delivered for April will reflect the price changes noted above.

    Public Cloud Economies of Scale at Work for You

    This is the benefit of the public cloud – large providers like CenturyLink buy the gear and write automation software to run it efficiently. Part of the scale we can achieve at CenturyLink with our public cloud is due to our other infrastructure services – colocation, and hosting products in over 60 data centers, as well as a world-class fiber network....

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    Unleash the Power of the Platform

    April 20, 2016
    By Jonathan Townsend

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    Unleash the Power of the Platform

    Understanding not only what the CenturyLink Cloud® Platform is, but how to use it to get the most out of the products, services, and offerings, requires more than a surface-level view. In essence, our goal is to show you how to really engage with the CenturyLink Cloud Platform. We created a quick "Platform Overview" video to cover a wide array of our platform offerings and to show you how you can easily build and customize our catalog of products and services to fit your specific business needs; and most importantly, manage them seamlessly with just a few clicks. Watch the video below to learn how to utilize the CenturyLink Cloud Platform and transform how you deliver services to your customers.

    2016 CenturyLink Cloud Platform Walkthrough. from CenturyLink Cloud on Vimeo.

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    Customizable Control at your Fingertips

    The CenturyLink Cloud Platform is comprised of IaaS, PaaS, and cloud management features that make it easier to manage and operate resources. Users can engage the platform by using the Control Portal, API's, and SDK's. There's a lot that goes into managing and building a cloud environment, such as thinking about the entire lifecycle of your resources. The Control Portal unlocks full functionality...

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    Data at Risk – What to do?

    April 14, 2016
    By Justin Withington

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    Why Data Protection Services are Important

    Data backup and restoration is critical on both a personal and business continuity level. From personal photos to customer financial information, data is always at risk of being lost. These risk factors range from user error to natural disaster; it’s not a matter of “if”, but "when." The associated downtime of these sudden events can cripple businesses. Those who are prepared can resume operations swiftly and not only minimize financial impact, but seize the opportunity to gain new business from competitors whose operations may be nonfunctional. The consequences of data loss can be so great that many businesses are forced on a regulatory level to maintain consistent copies of data.

    What Solution is Right for You?

    So you have important data that you don’t want to lose -- what next? With the myriad of choices, it may be difficult to determine what product provides the best fit for your needs. The first step in the selection process is to ask yourself “What am I trying to protect and why?”. Are you trying to ensure your precious memories are not erased forever? Perhaps you need to protect your sensitive client information from vandalism or system failure, or even...

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