Cloud Computing Doesn’t Have to Mean Signing Away Your Privacy

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From its very inception, the Internet was about decentralization. Most directly, it decentralized nations’ telecom infrastructure, and let people interact through increasingly personalized online platforms. But in a larger sense, the Internet decentralized a huge proportion of modern life, from starting a business, to searching for flights, and even to finding a date. Pre-existing power structures were never the same.

Recently, however, the Internet veered away from this core value of decentralization.

Most obviously there is the continuing concentration of wealth, and thus power within a small number of enormous corporations––most especially in Facebook, Amazon, and Google/Alphabet. Their dominance has made it harder for small companies to find a foothold in the market, and in turn it has caused a downturn in truly innovative, consumer-facing ideas. These large corporations, oligarchs, often intentionally hold back features rather than undercut some other product they sell, and in many ways inter-brand compatibility has never been worse.

Historically, ISPs (Internet Service Providers) haven’t engaged heavily in this sort of behavior because they have been restrained by various telecommunication laws and, eventually, by Net Neutrality legislation. Now, concerted efforts by these ISPs have resulted in the near-total destruction of the Net Neutrality regime — which means that, if anything, this trend away from the decentralized Internet is set to accelerate greatly in the near future.

The only solution is to introduce another decentralizing technology, something that so fundamentally changes the relationship between the user and their data that it can restart the Internet’s initial attempt to disrupt the status quo.

Subutai is that solution. The Internet was initially supposed to be decentralized based on the fact that its servers were located all over the world, but those servers soon collected into a finite list of corporate-owned master cloud computing locations. Subutai, on the other hand, uses blockchain technology to decentralize computing resources. In essence, they break apart the traditionally centralized master cloud, and separate it into small clouds created and controlled by each user.

Subutai allows you to share unused resources on the computers you already own, but the implications stretch far beyond bang-for-your-computing-buck. When you own your own cloud, when you are your own cloud service provider, there are no limits to what you can do––no artificial control that arises more from the convenience of unaccountable corporations, than the interests of real users.

However, just letting people share and re-use their own computing power has a limited ability to democratize and decentralize cloud computing in general, since many cloud computing tasks require far more speed than one person’s devices can provide, even when combined.

It’s one of the reasons why Subutai developed the Bazaar — a blockchain-driven marketplace that takes the concept of computational bartering to its logical conclusion and acts as “the Airbnb of Cloud and IoT Computing Resources”. Subutai’s internal coupon token, called GoodWill, allows users to pay for temporary use of idle computer resources on servers around the world. It also means users can rent out their idle resources when they are not in use, using their downtime to subsidize those times when they need to purchase a little extra juice.

It’s where the Subutai Blockchain Router v2.0 also steps in to decentralize the cloud. It acts as a dedicated cryptocurrency wallet and mining device, drawing just 18 watts of power. The Subutai Blockchain Router mines cryptocurrency more efficiently than all other solutions currently available.

Acting as a holistic solution, Subutai lowers the barrier to truly powerful cloud computing, and opens the world of business to a wider swathe of people than ever before. Subutai is decentralizing one of the most powerful business communication tools available today, cloud computing, and while there is no telling exactly how users will choose to put that tool to work, the possibilities are virtually endless.

Just like the creation of the internet itself, Subutai offers a chance for people everywhere, our Horde, to show what they can do when they’re given the chance to decentralize and wrest away power from corporate oligarchs.

Join our Horde and discover new ways to manage cloud computing and crypto-mining.

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Conquer the Cloud with Subutai Blueprints: Nextcloud – easy, flexible, secure cloud storage

Felipe Fonseca

By Subutai Community Manager Felipe Fonseca

At Subutai, we promote open source solutions that demonstrate the benefits and potential of peer-to-peer cloud computing. By using the Subutai blueprint for Nextcloud, you gain full use of the features of this file share and communication platform, and are able to store data in one or more locations of your choice.

Nowadays, we generate and consume a growing amount of pictures, videos, and audio files. It is a common issue that we end up with no place to store all of these files. Our smartphones get full and we transfer the files to a computer hard drive, which also gets full in no time. Some of us may resort to performing regular backups to external hard drives. But then again, how do we ensure that our data is not lost if we lose the hard drive or if it stops working?

There are commercial solutions to these issues that make the backup process easy for us. Think of those smartphone apps that can back up our files automatically. What’s good about them is that they store our files in the cloud. And, it costs us almost nothing to use these cloud storage services. So, is this the ultimate solution to our storage and backup issues? Probably not when we consider how easy it is for cloud service providers to gain access to our private files, constantly analyzing and cross-relating our content without even notifying us about it. True enough, the same app that sends our pictures to the cloud for backup can also ensue huge threats to our privacy.

One of the biggest advantages offered by the Subutai platform is precisely the ability to choose exactly where our data will be stored and accessed from. It could be in your own computer, in a friend’s or relative’s computer, or in one maintained by a provider that you rely on. If you want, you can create a cloud using several computers that are distributed in different parts of the world. You might wonder how security can be assured with this kind of setup. The advantage of using Subutai’s P2P cloud computing is that you can choose exactly where your application will run from. If you have sensitive data, you can install the PeerOS and run applications from your own peer. Alternatively, you can use those of friends or relatives, or peers provided by commercial providers that you trust.

I’ll show you how it works from a tutorial that I’ve prepared about setting up Nextcloud in someone else’s Peer.

Nextcloud Blueprint

Here’s the Nextcloud blueprint. I chose Nextcloud because it is an open and powerful solution that can be used for many ends, one of the more important being file synchronization. Drop by the Nextcloud website to find out about other features that you can use to your advantage.

Just some prerequisites before you start:

  • Subutai Bazaar account credentials for logging in. To help you set up an account, take a quick look at our Getting Started page.
  • PGP key set up in Account settings. For this, we recommend that you use our E2E browser plugin, which will generate and manage the PGP keys for you.

Ready to start? Watch the video and soon enough, you might find yourself setting up peer-to-peer cloud environments for friends and family, or even renting your own spare resources for others to use.

Once the new environment is built, you can gain access to a fully functional Nextcloud instance through your own URL. Take a look:

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You can then use Nextcloud’s mobile and desktop clients to easily back up and synchronize your files. Enjoy it!

Subutai Unlocks the World’s Computing Power

Subutai – Democratizing Cloud Computing

Right now, the $760 billion cloud computing industry survives on the basis of one very simple pitch: When your own computing devices are inadequate to meet your needs, you should simply order more storage and speed a-la-carte from major tech companies. The whole system is balanced on the idea that this pitch is sound.

But what if almost every cloud computing customer already has the power they need to ditch the cloud oligopoly for good, and they just don’t know it yet?

What if cloud computing could be democratized?

The world currently overlooks and wastes an overwhelming volume of all available computing resources. Companies like Microsoft, IBM, Amazon, and Google have a vested interest in making cloud computing overly complex and expensive for the average customer to make use of all the redundant resources they’ve already purchased.

A solution exists, however, that can disrupt many industries, the same way it’s already disrupting the global financial industry, and that solution is the blockchain.

Distributed ledger technology has already demonstrated a unique ability to disrupt huge entrenched oligopolies comprised of powerful corporations. Subutai democratizes cloud computing for everyone in exactly the same way.

Subutai is a progressive and innovative marriage of multiple technologies. In principle, the distributed computing platform is designed to be disruptive in a way similar to how Bitcoin shook up the financial industry, but respective of Google and Amazon rather than Wells Fargo and J.P. Morgan. Subutai brings together idle cloud computing resources so you, or your business, can cost effectively capitalize on a variety of services. You can configure your proprietary cloud to do what you need it to do, rather than being shackled by the limitations imposed by unaccountable cloud service providers.

Making all these possibilities a reality is the Subutai Open Source software stack, now in its 7th release. Subutai PeerOS can turn any computer into a personalized cloud computing platform, freeing that computer to offload complex tasks to the cloud, and also make its own idle downtime available for others to leverage.

Simply connecting all of your devices is not enough, you need Subutai to help access all of that idle power on a global scale. Sequentially, Subutai also developed the Subutai Bazaar, a marketplace that allows users to buy, sell, and trade computing resources between each other. Subutai blockchain technology facilitates easy and secure resource trading, democratizing the incredible power of computers all over the globe.

Coordinating a real-time, ad-hoc network of computing power like that is not easy, so Subutai also developed the Subutai Blockchain Router v2.0. This revolutionary device improves the networking efficiency of PeerOS by actively identifying and avoiding network bottlenecks. It improves security and monitors the contents of incoming packets of information. The Subutai Blockchain Router is a green cryptocurrency wallet and mining device that allows users to easily enter the cryptocurrency economy.

Our router’s efficiency will increase over time with updates to firmware, but right now, it is estimated that our router will generate a rate of up to $45 USD/month worth of Ether at current rates. The Subutai Blockchain Router v2.0 draws just 18 watts of power, making it up to 1,083 percent more efficient, and thus considerably “greener” than traditional GPU mining boards.

Using the Subutai ecosystem means that the agile, decentralized startups that have the most success in today’s market could considerably reduce their cloud computing and mining costs. With the addition of just a few Subutai Blockchain Routers (which in ideal conditions could pay for themselves within eight months), a network can run on decentralized peer-to-peer apps rather than expensive, centralized, and inherently insecure master cloud computing services from a third party, like Google.

Democratization is all about putting power back in your hands, and it’s our goal to ensure that reality becomes common place. We’re disrupting and changing cloud computing forever.

Join Our Horde!

Deploying GitLab through Subutai: the quick & easy way


By Subutai Community Manager Felipe Fonseca and Subutai’s GitLab Blueprint creator Marco Silva

Say hello to the GitLab Blueprint

So, you are concerned about the future of your Git repositories, following the huge movements the market has seen this week. You might have heard of another open source alternative, the GitLab community edition. But you don’t want to spend more money to pay for cloud services or spend more time learning how to install and setup GitLab in your server. Here’s where the Subutai GitLab blueprint comes in handy – enabling you to deploy GitLab on your peer-to-peer cloud.

In a nutshell, blueprints are enhanced templates designed to reduce system administration overheads by simplifying the deployment of cloud environments in the Subutai platform. If you are a Subutai Bazaar member, you might have come across blueprints on the Products page. Instead of setting up an environment from scratch, and then manually downloading and configuring GitLab, blueprints do all of these for you in the backend. Want to learn more about the Subutai platform? More info here: https://subutai.io.

Here’s what you need

Subutai users, with Bazaar accounts and peers, can skip this part and go straight to the walk-through below. First time users have to create an account on Subutai Bazaar. To do so, follow the guidelines on our Getting Started page. Just so you know, we are obsessed with security and privacy, so don’t forget to install the E2E browser plugin (all lightweight and open source, of course), which we developed for managing PGP keys. Registration is free and you even get to earn GoodWill, our internal Bazaar token.

With your Bazaar account set up, you can select the peer where you want to deploy the blueprint. From the Tools menu, go to the Peers page where you can select a peer and add it to your Favorites list. You will use that later during the blueprint set up. If you want to use your own peer, here are the instructions and guidelines, https://docs.subutai.io/Products/PeerOS_toctree.html.

Let us walk you through it

Once logged in to Bazaar, it’s just a matter of following these simple steps:

1. From the Tools menu, access the Products page.

Browse through the list on the Products page, where you can gain access to blueprints that can be deployed to any peer running our software, anywhere in the world.

2. On the Application Blueprints tab, click the GitLab blueprint icon or name.

If you want to review the inner structure of the blueprint, before deploying it, click View. Published blueprints come with full specifications so that they can be scrutinized by the community.

3. Click Build.
4. Set your variables.

The variables are quite straightforward, starting with names for the environment and container. Be sure to choose unique names to differentiate from other ones that you have or might want to build later. For the domain name, choose the subdomain through which you will access your GitLab instance. Free subdomains of “envs.subutai.cloud” are available for now. You can enter a new subdomain by clicking Add new. If you want to specify a container size, you may do so. Those who plan on hosting several projects may choose either the Large or Huge size.

The next screen about Ports only informs you that the system will automatically point your selected subdomain to the proper container. You can click Next to continue.

5. Select the peer where you want to run the environment.

Now is the time to decide where to deploy the blueprint. Select the peer that meets the requirements for your environment in terms of resources, geography, performance, and price (in GoodWill).

6. Click Finish.

Wait for the build to finish. You are redirected to the Environments page where you can monitor the progress, as the contents of the blueprint are downloaded automatically and deployed to the container.

It might take a few minutes, but it’s worth it!

7. Access and set up your GitLab admin account.

Want to see it live? Use the domain name that you have set up earlier in the Variables screen. You will see that as a link in the Domain Name column on the Environments page.

When you click the link, you will see the GitLab page where you must set the password for the administrator account or the root user. Once logged in, you may register other accounts.

So, there you go – a functional instance of GitLab deployed on a P2P cloud. You can start transferring your projects and look forward to creating new ones. Enjoy it!

Some important post installation notes:

We recognize that due to constraints about the way the Internet works nowadays, you cannot run your own email server in a sustainable and effective way. Your GitLab instance will work fine without an email server, but email will probably be needed for certain tasks. For instance, when one of your users forgets her password and needs a password recovery link to be sent. Or when the user wants to receive email notifications about changes in repositories they follow. What we recommend is that you create an account on a commercial SMTP server, where you can set up the credentials afterwards. GitLab provides documentation on how to do that here.

GitLab is only one among the various open source software that has been integrated into a blueprint for easy deployment on P2P cloud infrastructure. Pretty cool, right? If you want, you can contribute to our growing blueprint collection. Check out our Blueprint Hackathon. (Hint: We’re awarding GoodWill in exchange for coming up with quality blueprints.)

There is a systemic problem with Cloud Computing. Subutai has the solution.

The problem, and it is big, is that traditional cloud computing is centralized, and controlled by a small group of powerful corporations.

Cloud computing should service all high-level computing users effectively and efficiently. Although it may appear that way on the surface, cloud computing is becoming increasingly complex and cost-prohibitive, even for the pros.

The world is in the middle of an escalating cloud price war. Server companies are falling over themselves to cut costs, but the fact remains that the oligopoly wouldn’t need to cut costs if services were priced fairly in the first place. Subutai’s technologically disruptive products and strategies deliver solutions to fix these cloud computing problems.

Everyone recognizes and agrees that businesses must be profitable, but oligopolies strangle competition –­– the lifeblood that helps keep costs equitable. Natural human tendency is to gravitate to where our voices are heard and where we are respected, and it is exactly this type of cloud computing community that Subutai is helping to create: An equitable place where we can easily share resources, and where everyone can prosper.

The current way of leveraging cloud computing is provider-centric, not user-centric.

Essentially, the current climate is not based in democracy. Rather, it’s an environment controlled by the big players; Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google, IBM, and Alibaba, according to a report from ZDNet.

In response to this growing problem, the Subutai platform is designed to level the field by disrupting this environment, which makes cloud computing more accessible for everyone.

Subutai DISRUPTS Cloud Computing by;

  • Democratizing and decentralizing cloud computing to make it more accessible.
  • Commoditizing cloud computing to make it more affordable and profitable.
  • Fostering an Open Source atmosphere that encourages future growth.

Decentralizing the Cloud

Not surprisingly, we need to break a few eggs in order to bake this new cloud cake, or, to extrapolate the analogy a bit, into cupcakes.  Decentralizing, in essence, means Subutai is breaking apart the “master” central cloud, which is currently controlled by a handful of companies like Microsoft, Amazon, and Google. Subutai’s goal is to decentralize the oligopoly and separate it into an infinite number of CLOUDS, which would mean the correct terminology is in fact, “Clouds Computing.”

Commoditizing the Cloud

We’re also aiming to enable individual and organizational users to benefit from renting/selling out their unused computer resources. Up to 90 percent of computing power around the world is underutilized, which means machines sit idle most of the time. Consequently, our strategy is to commoditize this currently untapped resource through our suite of services and products.

From where we began to where we’re heading.

Open Source trailblazers–­–Jon “maddog” Hall, Alex Karasulu, and Sally Khudairi–­–are the intellectual driving forces behind Subutai. All three garnered their substantial knowledge of cloud computing through diverse technological careers.

Jon began to build systems on Unix in 1980, and also helped formulate and define Linux in 1994 –­– inspired forever by Open Source philosophy after working alongside and becoming close friends with Linus Torvalds. Jon “maddog” is credited for being part of the meeting where the term “Open Source” was formalized. “maddog” is also currently the Board Chair for the Linux Professional Institute.

Alex, Founder and CTO of OptDyn – the technology company behind Subutai, is the original author of the Apache Directory Server. He also co-founded Apache projects like MINA, Felix, and Karaf. His software is used every day in commercial solutions by Google, IBM, Atlassian, Cisco, Polycom, and more.

Sally is the former deputy to Sir Tim Berners-Lee (Tim is recognized globally as the inventor of the World Wide Web). Sally was the Head of Communications for the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). She also helped launch The Apache Software Foundation in 1999, and is currently its Vice President of Marketing and Publicity.  

Everyone at Subutai knows we didn’t get where we are on our own. Brilliant and progressive thought leaders went before us to carve a path and set standards. We all humbly recognize that we stand on the shoulders of giants like Columbia University Professor Al Aho, and are also respectfully indebted to C programming language and Unix co-creator Dennis Ritchie, without whom Subutai would not exist.

In our next blog, we’ll dive deeper into the Subutai ecosystem by exploring how all of our different products and services work towards one singular solution: The democratization, decentralization, and commoditization of cloud computing.

As a teaser, start by checking out our Website, where you will find information on our comprehensive suite of products and services. See the link below for more information.

The Subutai Solution

If you like what you see here, and on our Website, join our social media channels and our Bazaar marketplace to become part of the Subutai Horde.

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