What Rackspace’s new changes mean for individual developers/users

Today, Rackspace announced they are now a “Managed Cloud Company”. With this announcement Rackspace actually ceases to provide ‘Unmanaged’ services for servers. Rackspace will now also  break out the infrastructure cost from the support cost, much like all managed providers do which is charge you for the servers and then an extra fee for managing them and the support costs. This is now an inconvenience (pricing wise) for individual developers because there is now a minimum fee of $50 for a “Managed Infrastructure” service level. So for example, my server that used to cost $25/month with Fanatical Support included, now costs $25, plus the $50 Support Level fee, bumping it to $75/mo. This new pricing may only be for new customers, as in my Control Panel I can see I was grandfathered into the old ‘Unmanaged’ level. As you can see, this new pricing does not suit well developers who just want unmanaged servers with great support to back them up if anything goes wrong. 

Rackspace New Service Levels
You can click on the image to enlarge

With this new direction they are heading to, they are making it clear they want to attract companies who don’t want to manage the server, but rather focus on the code and the product. Thus, like I said before, making it not worth it for individual developers and users like me who just want a server where to have a personal site or hobby products.

Their CTO, John Engates told VentureBeat

“If you show up at Rackspace and say, ‘I want infrastructure as a service, but I don’t want any managed cloud stuff,’ then you really can’t sign up for Rackspace, you won’t be a customer of Rackspace,” 

Sadly, this also means I won’t be recommending Rackspace anymore to individual developers looking for a hosting company as it is no longer viable to do so, and most individual developers do not need a managed solution.

gapingvoid's support drawing
gapingvoid’s drawing of Rackspace’s former vision about Fanatical Support

Hugh MacLeod (@gapingvoid) drew this cartoon(?) a while ago on what made Rackspace so unique and so damn good. The fact they included, on the price of the server, their Award Winning Fanatical Support (and criticized AWS for it) and it’s now sad to see them take the same route by separating the cost of the server and support.

In closing, Rackspace is now catering to companies that don’t want to manage the server and focus on their product while having top notch, world class support and that have the big pockets to afford a managed solution; and the individual peeps who just want a simple server with that great, world class support included will have to look elsewhere.

If you have any comments or thoughts on this new direction they are taking, feel free to comment below.


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