TelecityGroup customers on fast-track to Microsoft Azure

Cloud file transfer

Users of TelecityGroup’s Cloud-IX platform can now expand their IT operations into Microsoft’s public cloud, with the help of the software giant’s Azure ExpressRoute service.

The firm’s Cloud-IX platform provides TelecityGroup’s customers with a means of connecting their on-premise IT resources to a virtual network of cloud service providers to create hybrid cloud environments.

The introduction of the Azure ExpressRoute service means end users can now access the Microsoft Azure public cloud platform via a private connection as well.

As a result, users can now draw on Microsoft’s public cloud to rapidly scale up their IT operations at busy times, Rob Coupland, UK managing director of TelecityGroup, told Cloud Pro.

“Increasingly people need some flexibility around [how their organisation operates] and that can be because they have cyclical businesses, with peaks and troughs in demand throughout the year. Demand isn’t necessarily on a predictable basis,” he said.

As a result, he said the offering would be well suited to the retail sector or ticketing outlets, which often have to respond to rapid and fleeting demands on their infrastructure at certain times of the year.

“What it does is let people take all of the benefits that come from having their own [datacentre] platform, and then leverage - with a direct link that isn’t based on an internet connection - a cloud-based solution that offers them the best of both worlds,” Coupland added.

The announcement coincides with the first day of Microsoft's TechEd conference in the US, where the software giant confirmed the immediate availability of Azure ExpressRoute and its launch partners.

Along with, TelecityGroup, these include Equinix, AT&T, BT, Level 3, SingTel, Verizon and Zadara Storage.

Without the Azure ExpressRoute service in place, Coupland said users would have to rely on a public internet connection, which may result in performance issues for some.

“Microsoft Azure is an established platform, but for businesses that want to connect to that, the connection [in the past] has been over the public internet, [but] what ExpressRoute and the link through Cloud-IX is doing is allowing people to connect into the Azure platform via a private network,” he explained.

“This means you have much better control over the bandwidth requirements you have, the latency of the connection and it means you can get much tighter coupling between the dedicated [Cloud-IX] platform and Azure.”

Steve Martin, general manager for Windows Azure at Microsoft, said the technology tie-up between the two firms means users can create their own hybrid cloud environments with greater ease.

“Our expansion into TelecityGroup’s datacentres via ExpressRoute is an important step, enabling customers to access dedicated and secure connection to Microsoft Azure and execute scalable private and hybrid cloud deployments,” Martin added.

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.