In an exciting web broadcast Rackspace yesterday announced its cloud strategy. Its commitment to the cloud started to become visible with Mosso and then the CloudFS beta, which is a storage system that looks very much like Amazon S3. It has now renamed CloudFS to CloudFiles and unveiled CloudServers, which will offer a service competing with Amazon EC2, which we will support as soon as it becomes publicly available. It is also acquiring Slicehost and JungleDisk. I haven't used Slicehost, but I'm an avid JungleDisk user and am really happy for the momentum this will add behind JungleDisk!
Rackspace's announcements are momentous because they come from one of the leading managed hosting providers - one with the foresight to see that cloud architectures are a critical path to the future for both them and their customers. This is more evidence of the groundswell of support that cloud computing is experiencing. Given Rackspace's long history in the hosting business and its focus on "fanatical support," we expect to see the company bring an interesting new combination of strategic strengths to the market. As we announced last month, RightScale is working closely with Rackspace to support their cloud suite on release.