We occasionally get questions regarding the differences between the Everleap Managed Hosting and Microsoft Azure hosting solutions. Here we’re going to answer these questions.
First, Microsoft Azure is a powerful public cloud platform that is built for developers and can run almost anything. Microsoft continues to add more functionality to address very niche technology markets. It is true that everything you can run on the Everleap platform, can be run on Microsoft Azure. Therefore, users may be thinking why does Everleap even try to compete?
Well, the answer is that Everleap does not try to compete with Azure on the basis of hosting technologies. Microsoft Azure will always have a deeper technology stack and a larger global footprint. While their hosting functions may overlap, Everleap fills a different need in the marketplace. Everleap focuses on delivering high touch services to small- and medium-sized businesses.
Azure has the advantage of size and scale, spanning the globe, and its deep technology stack. For example, if your application usage is growing exponentially, Azure can scale automatically as you grow. Azure supports niche technologies, like AI, machine learning, and Kubernetes containers. Azure also supports scaling across datacenters in multiple geographical locations.
However, many businesses do not experience exponential growth and do not require geographically load-balanced servers. If we consider an eCommerce website powered by nopCommerce, you will want a Windows Web Server and a SQL Database. In this case, you may want to weigh out your hosting options.
The table below shows some of the differences between the Everleap Managed Hosting and Microsoft Azure solution.
Note: if you just compare a list of technologies, then Everleap would only have a small fraction of Azure’s capabilities.
|Pre-Sales Consulting||Yes (Free)||No|
|Who does initial server setup||Everleap Staff||Customer|
|APIs to turn on/off VMs and create VMs||No||Yes|
|24/7 Technical Support by Hosting Staff||Yes (Free)||No Yes, with paid Standard or Professional Direct Support Plan*|
|Power & Network Uptime for Single Instance VM||99.9%||95% – 99.9%**|
|Power & Network Uptime for Multiple Instance VMs Across Multiple Datacenters within a region||N/A||99.99%**|
|Payments||Billed monthly in advance||Billed monthly in arrears|
|Billing Style||Flat Monthly Fees||By the minute (VM); By the second (Containers); Per GB (Storage); Per execution (functions)***|
|Data Transfer Fees||No,|
ingress/egress bandwidth included with monthly price
ingress/egress bandwidth billed separately
|Predictable Monthly Pricing||Yes||No|
Let’s take a closer look at the three broad categories that encompass many of the line items above.
Developer-Friendly vs. High Touch Service
Azure is a developer-friendly platform with a deep technology stack. It is practically a technology playground for a developer. Developers can create and control their hosting environment through the Azure portal or through their code. However, because of its flexibility and power, the Azure environment management increases in complexity, which can be overwhelming even for seasoned developers.
At Everleap, we focus on high touch services. We provide a free consultation, and we help design an optimized hosting infrastructure for our customer’s needs. We believe in a right-sized hosting environment – one that is not under-resourced, and one where the customer should not pay for resources that they do not need.
While Azure deployments are done by the customer, Everleap services are fully managed. This means Everleap takes care of all server updates and security patches. Managing tens of thousands of sites, our Everleap staff often observes trending issues early on and we proactively work with our Managed Hosting customers to help them avoid being impacted by new threats.
Everleap will initially set up the hosting environment and we’ll migrate customer sites, if needed. In any transition, our goal is to make sure there is the least amount of downtime possible. Our customers can benefit from our over two decades of hosting experience.
Microsoft delegates basic technical support to an automated Azure Advisor system, self-help resources, their forums, their MSP partners, and online support request forms with no stated response time.
For a higher level of support, Azure offers three Support Plans: Developer Plan ($29/mo), Standard Plan ($100/mo) and Professional Direct Plan ($1,000/mo). The Support Plans are listed here. The Developer Plan is for trial and non-production environments, while the Standard and Professional Direct Plans are for Production workloads.
At Everleap, we provide 24/7 technical support included as part of our Managed Hosting services with no additional fees. Our team can review issues and provide recommendations on how to address the issue and improve performance.
For example, a nopCommerce website with a large 5,000+ product catalog may be experiencing performance issues. With our partnership with nopCommerce and other partners, we can work together to improve the store performance. Our aim is to be a true partner to help our customers be successful online.
For pricing, Microsoft breaks down the Azure computation resources to its core components and charges by resource usage. The infrastructure resources are broken down into storage, memory, CPU time and bandwidth and pricing is calculated on a cost-per-minute, cost-per-GB, or cost-per-use basis.
While you only pay for what you use, the downside is that you are never sure how much you will be charged at the end of the month. For any changes, you want to make sure you take the pricing model into account, or else your bill can be dramatically affected.
At Everleap, we try to optimize the cloud hosting costs and charge a fixed monthly fee, which is generally less than the cost of public clouds. With predictable monthly fees, you will never be hit with any surprise bills.
In conclusion, where you decide to host your applications will depend a lot on your use case and your needs. Azure is a virtually infinitely scalable platform with a deep technology stack spanning the globe. While Azure is developer-friendly, Everleap is business-friendly. Everleap provides businesses with fully-managed hosting, high touch service, great technical support, and a predictable pricing model.
We believe that Everleap is a nopCommerce-friendly hosting solution worth checking out. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Everleap, and we will be happy to discuss your situation.
Takeshi Eto is a VP Marketing and Business Development at Everleap. Everleap provides a cost-effective scalable cloud solution allowing customers to focus on their business rather than managing services.