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> One day running your own servers will be like running your own ISP . Massively impractical because the free market has been manipulated to the point that it effectively no longer exists

What? People use cloud computing because it already is massively impractical to run your own servers. Hardware is hard to run and scale on your own and experiences economies of scale. This principle is seen everywhere and can hardly be viewed as something controversial. Walmart for instance can sell things at a really low price because of the sheer volume of their sales. Similarly, data centers also experience economies of scale.

As someone who cares about offering the best possible, reliable user experience, cloud computing is absolutely the next logical step from bare metal on-prem servers. When your system experiences load outside the constraints of what it can handle, a properly designed app that has independently scaling microservices horizontally scales.

Even if you had the state of the art microservice architecture running on a kubernetes cluster on your own hardware, you still wouldn't be able to source disk/CPU fast enough if your service happens to experience loads beyond what you provisioned.

And there is the rub, buying your own hardware costs money, and no one wants to buy hardware they may not ever use. Another advantage of cloud computing.

You are seeing the peak of free market right now, because of cloud computing, which enables people with little upfront cash to invest to form real internet businesses and scale massively.

You think a game like Pokemon Go can exists and do the release they did without cloud computing?




"Even if you had the state of the art microservice architecture running on a kubernetes cluster on your own hardware, you still wouldn't be able to source disk/CPU fast enough if your service happens to experience loads beyond what you provisioned." That basically means you never planned. As everyone moves to cloud what makes you think AWS, Azure wont have same issue. If entire region is down do you think other regions can handle the load. If you think so you're kidding yourself. Unless you have business where you dont know your peak number then cloud does not matter.


You can plan all you'd like, failures happen not necessarily due to poor planning but because in real life, shit happens. Pokemon Go for instance experienced like 50x the amount of traffic they planned for.

Secondly, software companies like Microsoft, Google and IBM might know a thing or two about running data centers. Due to economies of scale, these companies are inherently in a better position to supply hardware at scale.

> If entire region is down do you think other regions can handle the load. If you think so you're kidding yourself

Netflix routinely does just this to test the resilience of their systems. They pick a random AWS region, and they evacuate it. All the traffic is proxied to the other regions and eventually via DNS the traffic is routed entirely to the surviving regions. No interruption of service is experienced by the users.

Here's a visualization of Netflix simulating a failure on the US-east-1 region and failing over to US-west-1/US-west-2

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVbTjlZ0sfE

The top right node is the one that fails. As the error rate climbs, traffic starts getting proxied over to the surviving nodes, until a DNS switch redirects all traffic to the surviving nodes. Netflix does this monthly, in production. They also run https://github.com/Netflix/SimianArmy on production.

The cloud enables fault tolerance, resiliency and graceful degradation.


I think you missed the point, Netflix evacuating a region is not the same thing as that region failing. If the whole region goes down, their (AWS's) total capacity just took a major hit and unless they have obscenely over-provisioned (they haven't), shit is going to hit the fan when people start spinning up stuff in the remaining regions to make up for the loss.


>The cloud enables fault tolerance, resiliency and graceful degradation

No, tooling to failover and spin up new instances does that. An enterprise with 3 data centers can do that.

"the cloud" is just doing it on someone else's hardware.


Have you run your own servers in a colo? I've done it myself.

One person, with maybe 3 hours a week of time investment after a few weeks of setup and hardware purchase. Using containers I can move between the cloud and my own servers seamlessly, and long as I never bite the golden apple and use any of the cloud's walled garden "services" like S3. If I need more power I can spin up some temporary servers at any cloud provider in a few hours. For me the cloud is a nice thing because I don't use too much of it. If AWS disappeared tomorrow it would be a mild inconvenience, not devestating like it would be to many newer unicorns.

Go ahead and try to use the cloud you're paying for as a CDN or DDoS sheild, or anything amounting to a bastion of free speech. You'll quickly find out that your cloud provider doesn't like you to use all the bandwidth and CPU you pay for, and they don't like running your servers when they disagree with your views. They quietly overprovision everything pulling the same crap as consumer ISPs where they sell you a 100mbps line and punish you if you use more than 10 of that on average. That's the main reason the cloud is so cheap.

Hardware is cheap, colo's are cheap, software is largely easy to manage. The economy of scale they enjoy is from vendor lock-in and overprovisioning more than anything else.

Is it really that hard to double the amount of servers you own every few weeks? No! If you're using containers or managed KVM you can mirror nodes basically for free over the network as soon as the Ethernet is plugged in. Your time amounts to what it takes to put the thing in a rack, plug in the Ethernet, and hit the "on" button. Everybody in SV land thinks you have to use cloud to "scale massively" but they forget that all of today's technology behemoths were built years ago when the cloud didn't exist. Oh yeah, they all still run all of their own hardware too and have from the early days. Using their model as a template, you should own every single server you use and start selling your excess capacity once you get big enough.

Did you ever read about how Netflix tried to run their own hardware but can't because they have so much data in AWS that it would basically bankrupt them to extract it? Look at how these cost models work. Usually inbound bandwidth is extremely cheap or free but outbound is massively more expensive than a dedicated line at a datacenter, 50-100 times the cost if you're saturating that line 24/7. The removal fees from a managed store like S3 or glacier are even more ludicrous. The cloud is like crack and as soon as you start using it more than a few times a year you will get locked in and unable to leave without spending massive $$$. Usually companies figure out this shell game once they're large enough, but by then it's far too late to do anything about it.

Why are they marketing these things so heavily to startups? Because lock in is how they make their money. They make little or nothing on pure compute power, but since you don't have low level hardware access they can charge whatever the hell they want for things like extra IP's, DDoS protection, DC to DC peering, load balancing, auto scaling. You give massive discounts to new players using these systems and inevitably some of these will become the next Uber or Netflix. Then you are free to charge whatever exhoribitant rates you please once it's so impractical to move that it would require a major redesign of the business.

I see it a lot like franchising. By building on Amazon's cloud services you become "Uber company brought to you by Amazon". Like franchising, your upside is limited because any owner with a significant share of total franchises will begin to put pressure on the service owner itself.


To be honest, you sound like conspiracy nut hell bent on hating the Cloud. Maybe you should try taking a deep breath, and try to open up to the possibility that the Cloud is actually a good thing, and Cloud providers aren't the illuminati trying to "lock you in". Well maybe they are. Of course every cloud provider wants you to use their services.

But any "lock in" is totally up to you. Take a look at this: https://kubernetes.io/

You can architect your system in a way that it'll run on any cloud provider. All the major Cloud Providers support kube for orchestration.

To be honest I don't think you know what you're talking about. You should refrain from making uninformed opinions on hacker news, especially on a throwaway.


Did you ever read about how Netflix tried to run their own hardware but can't because they have so much data in AWS that it would basically bankrupt them to extract it?

Where did you read this? You can have Amazon send you a truck full of hard drives. I doubt it costs more than Netflix can afford.


Nevermind, I misremembered the story I read about them. They moved the main site to AWS with the huge omission of their movie streaming system. Their own Open Connect servers are far cheaper to use for this becuase of massive AWS outbound data costs.

Also, the truck is for data in, not data out. Getting data out of AWS is far more expensive than putting it in. That's the lock in.


The 'huge omission' is by design.

Also, the truck is for data in, not data out. Getting data out of AWS is far more expensive than putting it in. That's the lock in.

This is also not true. The bulk transfer service is bi-directional.


The Open Connect servers are for the edges, not the core.

They cache popular content close to the users, they don't manage their catalog at the edges.




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