Originally via a tweet from Mashable's Adam Ostrow Rackspace had a significant outage, which again raises the question of what it will take for companies to maintain a reputation as businesses look at cloud computing. Although you could argue that much of what Rackspace does isn't a cloud, an outage is an outage.
7Signals (and its suite of apps), Threadless, and the recently launched Vevo were among the major websites knocked offline, though Twitter search indicates that potentially thousands that host on either Rackspace's cloud or dedicated servers were impacted.Rackspace had another big outage in July, and there was the Microsoft Bing outage earlier this month.
Not that Rackspace has jumped with both feet into a cloud -- it's taking more of an incremental approach. And Microsoft Bing isn't the same as Azure for Microsoft. However, we're back to the question of reputational damage. It's still early in cloud adoption. A 2009 Forrester study found that only 5 percent of enterprises already incorporated pay-per-use hosting on virtual servers as part of their infrastructures.
CIOs are still early in trying out cloud computing, and if only 5 percent of large corporations had experience with virtual remote hosting, you can be sure that relatively few are up to full production mode. They are watching the entries for signs of strength ... and weakness. So vendors must deal with the calculus of maximizing name recognition and association with the market and minimizing negative perception. It's going to be a tough and interesting race.
Image via stock.xchng user bewinca, site standard license.