A typical stumbling block for managed service providers when deciding on an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platform is how much access and control over the environment they will need. These requirements may come from personal preferences or from customer and regulatory demands. IaaS provider ProfitBricks just made it a little easier for MSPs to gain more control over their IaaS environment.
ProfitBricks now gives IaaS users BIOS-level access, a move that offers a cloud experience more closely resembling bare metal servers.
“Our virtual machines look and feel more like the bare metal, all instances include dedicated CPU cores, dedicated RAM and now BIOS-level access just like the physical servers that IT admins are used to, except they get all of the advantages of cloud computing from the price/performance leader,” said ProfitBricks Co-founder, CEO, and CTO Achim Weiss. “We want to give our customers as much control of their virtual data center as they would have in a traditional on-premises data center, but without the hassle of the capital expenditures and never-ending hardware maintenance. With this new feature we’re making cloud computing an even more attractive alternative for the enterprise.”
MSPs can now observe and interrupt the pre-boot sequence of a virtual machine as it starts up. Access is available to the Preboot Execution Environment (PXE) where Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) configurations can be customized and API access is given to the Basic Input/Output Operating System (BIOS).
Later in the pre-boot process, the multi-boot loader GNU GRUB is also accessible, allowing system administrators to execute tasks like entering different recovery modes and conducting memory tests, all prior to the guest operating system being loaded.