Hosting company eyes enterprise market

Hosting company SmartyHost is turning its attention to the enterprise with the launch of its dedicated hosting business SmartyCorp.

Since its inception in 1999 the Melbourne-based company has focused mainly on the SME sector, typically hosting Web sites from 50MB up to 1GB.

The new dedicated service opens up its business to encompass larger corporate accounts, according to the company, which says it has already signed up online brokerage firm TraderDealer and the Australian Innovation Festival.

Company founder and managing director, Anoosh Manzoori, said the company has spent $500,000 in preparation for the expansion. In the past few months it has installed at is Optus data centre an EMC Clarion SAN and 6GB Dell PowerEdge 1850 blade servers. All servers in the data centre run Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

"Now our storage is separated from our servers so we can scale," he said. "We have enormous storage requirements for the SANs."

The new SAN brings total storage capacity to 38TB, he said.

He said the company considered a HP storage solution but decided the EMC best fitted its hosting requirements.

Manzoori said the nature of hosting has meant buying off-the- shelf packages has been a no-go. As a result the customer tech support, billing and a feed that connects to its resellers have all been developed in-house using open source tools.

The customers are managed with an in-house CRM suite built with PHP and Perl and feeding into a MySQL database. These servers sit in a RHEL cluster.

Similarly, the company built an online system so that resellers can sign up customers and activate those accounts instantly, removing the need for a paper trail.

Using open source tools and Linux on the boxes has allowed all costs to be reduced, he said.

The company now has 25,000 customers with 90 percent of business direct and the remaining through resellers.

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