Introducing Aliyun, Alibaba’s cloud service

Aliyun (www.aliyun.com) is the Alibaba’s response to Amazon Web Services (aws.amazon.com) for the Chinese market. Some would call it a clone, however Aliyun has not just copied the features and services of AWS, but rather developed a full product range that meet the requirements of the Chinese marketplace.

While Aliyun is mostly known for its cloud servers, it is in fact more than just that. The mean products include;

-Cloud servers (ECS)

-Cloud Server Loads Balancers (SLB)

-Elastic Scaling Services (ESS)

-Cloud Load Balancers

-Open Storage Service (OSS)

-Content Delivery Networks (CDN)

-Open Archive Service (OAS)

-Open Table Service (OTS)

-Open Cache Service (OCS)

-Relational Database Service (RDS)

-Analytic Database Service (ADS)

Aliyun flagship cloud servers are available at 5 datacenters locations: Hangzhou (where Alibaba headquarters are located), Beijing, Qingdao, Shenzhen and Hong Kong. Multiple Linux and Windows operating systems are available: CentOS, Ubuntu, Debian, OpenSuse, Aliyun Linux, Windows Server 2003, 2008 and 2012. Activation is done automatically online after purchase without any human interaction. Pricing is definitely competitive even when compared to local competition.

Currently Aliyun website is available in Chinese only and does not seem to support international payment options. Clearly it is a service that is targeting business and individual customers in mainland China at the time.

Alibaba also operates Hichina/Net.cn, one of the largest Chinese domain registrars and web hosting companies. Combined with Aliyun, Alibaba is a player to take into account in the IT service industry. The Alibaba Group has now well diversified beyond the original B2B platform to include today e-commerce (B2C, C2C and wholesale platforms), financial services, online marketing and cloud computing.

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