Wizard Needs Food Badly... Wizard is About to Die.

January 16, 2009

Anyone familiar with arcade games from the 80s would recognize that line. It's from the arcade game Gauntlet, which was also featured on the NES and had a number of sequels on other systems. Wizard was always about to die, because Wizard was a big wimp. For those of you unfamiliar with Gauntlet in particular, it was one of the first games that allowed you to keep playing as long as you kept shoving your hard-earned quarters into the slot. In essence, Gauntlet was the first electronic subscription based service. You keep playing as long as you keep paying. However, Gauntlet never seemed to keep a customer for longer than about 20 minutes. Maybe that's because your characters went through health like a Hummer goes through gasoline...but I digress.

Since Gauntlet, the subscription based service model has really improved. SoftLayer employs it, as you know. However, unlike Gauntlet, we charge by the month. This is a key distinction. Whereas Gauntlet was always trying to kill you to get another quarter, SoftLayer focuses on protecting you. We do everything we can to make sure that your experience is a happy one, and that you are never "about to die." To that end we employ several awesome features to both improve your experience as a customer, and to ensure your servers' safety.

Some of the features that I think are the coolest are the ones that work passively in the background without user intervention. They just exist, sitting there and making SoftLayer the best place to have a server. For instance, our private network is always there, always on, ready for our customers to use. From secure server management to private file transfers and backup, the private network is one of our most awesome features, and everyone gets it immediately. It's always there, ready for you to use for your needs.

Our TippingPoint protection is another great feature that runs constantly in the background. If you are a current customer, you can look under "Public Network" for the "network ids" section to view the attacks on your servers in the last 24 hours. Scary stuff, huh? At the time of this writing, our TippingPoint servers have successfully blocked more than 200,000 attacks in the last 24 hours against our three data centers in Dallas, Seattle, and Washington DC. The internet is a dangerous place, but the SoftLayer network is insulated against the port scanners, botnets, and various other malicious activity.

There are other systems we have in place that customers never notice. We have redundant power supplies, multiple internet links, and 24/7 staff in place specifically so that the customer won't notice when something has gone awry. These systems, while very "active" from our perspective, run in the background as far as customers are concerned, constantly ensuring that the servers stay awake, cool, and dry.

In addition to these (and many more) passive features keeping you safe, there's also active features. We have firewalls, DDOS protection, and load balancers you can configure to make sure your servers stay up. If they go down, we have cross-datacenter backup solutions, monitoring servers, and portable IP addresses to make sure your downtime is as short as possible. Whatever could cause your server harm, we're trying to help you avoid it. In the case where it was unavoidable, we offer a multitude of solutions to minimize downtime and recover from disaster.

So if you're currently pumping quarters into something that's actively trying to kill you, why not save up and get a SoftLayer server for a month. We'll protect you.

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