I have always been an avid user of the RackSpace Cloud CDN services. Using it for most of my sites and even recommending it to fellow web designers looking for a CDN solution.
The RackSpace Cloud is now partnering with Akamai Technologies, Inc as their primary Content Distribution Network (CDN) provider. This new partnership does not affect current members, but it opens up the doors for new possibilities within the RackSpace Cloud network, including SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), Edge Purge and CNAMES, which are not supported on the current LimeLight Networks CDN.
Akamai Technologies has had a long history in CDN technology since they were founded in 1998. Akamai’s network includes over 73,000 servers in 70 countries over more than 1,000 networks. With upwards of $850 million in yearly revenue Akamai has a strong hold on the CDN community. Their current facts state they manage 15-30% of all internet traffic and distribute 4 Terabits a second.
In an email released today from The RackSpace Cloud, they explained that the current network setup will not be affected by the change, but to gain access to the new features they will have to switch to the new system. During the first quarter of 2011 RackSpace Cloud hopes to release SSL and Edge Purge, a way to quickly drop your data from the CDN, to their customers.
In the second quarter of 2011 RackSpace Cloud plans to gain a much-needed feature, CNAMES. Simple putting it, RackSpace Cloud usually gives you an ugly-looking long URL that you add to your site to get information from the CDN, with the new feature release you can turn that ugly CDN into something like cdn.example.com and make it look better for your site.
As indicated in the email sent out today, RackSpace Cloud plans to migrate all accounts in the first half of 2011, and will tell users when the change has been made. RackSpace Cloud also had no intention at this time to discontinue the current LimeLight Networks service.
For more information about the RackSpace Cloud partnership click here for the full release.