Glossary

  • API - API (Application Programming Interface) is a suite of tools that are available to manage and control the functions available within a cloud platform such as Datapipe's Stratosphere.
  • Appliances - Appliances are specialized virtual machines. These are virtual machines that have had additional capabilities added, such as web engines, database management, caching, etc.
  • CIDR - CIDR (Classless Inter-Domain Routing) is an IP addressing method used in security groups when defining access rules. It uses the notation: x.x.x.x/0-32 where the part before the slash represents the node or network address while the part after the slash represents the "mask" for the network. The mask determines how many nodes are in the range. Eg., 1.1.1.1/32 means that only 1.1.1.1 is included; 1.1.1.0/24 means that every address from 1.1.1.1 to 1.1.1.254 in the 1.1.1.0 network is included; 0.0.0.0/0 indicates all possible nodes in all possible networks are included.
  • Cloning - Cloning, as the name implies, is the duplication of VMs. Cloning is a common practice both as a way to backup and protect valuable data, and as a way to increase performance and availability.
  • Data disk offerings - Every virtual machine comes with a root disk of 20 GB for Linux, 40 GB for Windows. If you require additional disk capacity, you can add volumes (from 20 GB to 1 TB in size) to your virtual machine at any time.
  • Hypervisor - A Hypervisor is server-grade computer that has been optimized with special provisions for supporting and running virtual machines. Essentially, a hypervisor allows virtual machines to communicate directly with its underlying hardware thereby producing better performance.
  • Instances - "Instances" is a common way of referring to virtual machines. It is most commonly used to differentiate virtual machines within a deployment since VMs can often be identical in every other respect..
  • Key pair - A key pair is a highly encrypted method to provide secure access to virtual machines and other resources. It consists of two parts: a public key known to all and a private key known only to the owner. The two must agree before access is authorized.
  • Load balancing - Stratosphere provides TCP-level load balancing functionality. This is similar to port forwarding but with traffic getting distributed to multiple destinations following a configurable policy using some method such as round-robin, least connection or by source IP.
  • Public cloud -- Public clouds are based on the standard cloud computing model where a service provider (i.e., Datapipe) makes resources, such as applications and storage, available to the general public over the Internet.
  • RDP - RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) is a proprietary Microsoft client that allows encrypted access to Windows systems over TCP port 3389.
  • Resource Group - A resource group is a convenient way to organize your instances for browsing. It can act as a filter so you see only those instances belonging to that group.
  • Service offering - A service offering is a combination of computing resources which can be allocated to virtual machines. Datapipe's Stratosphere currently offers servers with combinations of from 0.5 to 4 cores and from 512 MB to 64 GB RAM. Offerings larger than 8GB of memory require approval via the High CPU and Memory Offering Request Form.
  • Security group - A secuiity group acts as virtual firewall to control access to virtual resources. Access to these resources are granted and controlled by sets of rules. Rules can be configured for three specific protocols: TCP, UDP and ICMP. Rules also can specify access to be granted to individual IP addresses, ranges of IP addresses or all IP addresses using CIDR.
  • Snapshots - Snapshots are point-in-time captures of the current state of virtual machine volumes. Snapshots can be initiated ad hoc by the user or programmatically using APIs.
  • SSH - SSH (Secure Shell) is a Linux protocol running on TCP port 22 that provides encrypted and secure access to Linux systems.
  • Template - A template is special file from which virtual machines can be created. They are comprised of all of the code and configurations a virtual machine requires in order to become functional.  
  • Virtual machines - Virtual machines, commonly referred to as "VMs", are servers that run "on top" of a specialized hardware called hypervisors. They are indistinguishable from hardware-based servers in that they look, feel and perform the same jobs and functions as their physical brethren. They are provisioned through the Stratosphere cloud portal.
  • VPN - VPN (Virtual Private Network) is a technology that allows the creation of secure tunnels between private sites over the Internet.  Information can be exchanged securely over encrypted pathways only available to systems sharing appropriate key pairs and digital certificates.
  • Volumes - Volumes are portions of physical drives that are logically apportioned and made available to virtual machines, to store application and data. Every virtual machine will have at least one volume, called "root disk" or "system disk". This is where the base operating system resides. Virtual machines may have additional volumes attached for storage of data, logs and other necessary information.
  • Zones - Zones are locations with clusters of "hypervisors". Each zone is seperated, logically and physically from the others. They provide broad geographic coverage and a means to ensure high availability.