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Cloud based learning environments


Cloud based learning environments

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parv 3831
parv 3831
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Hi all,

I wondered if anyone could help suggest a cloud hosting provider.

I am mentoring a young SQL Server newbie and wondered where he could build online VMs and practice Windows and SQL admin for a cheap price. I would like him to learn to build domain controllers, fail over clusters, AD, installing and configuring SQL Server.

Thanks in advance
RTaylor2208
RTaylor2208
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Group: General Forum Members
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Amazon web services supports the building of virtual machines using there EC2 functionality, there is free layer servers that you can build that have SQL express installed. The also have a cheap database layer called RDS which provides SQL \ Oracle \ MySQL DB engines that are exposed via an endpoint. But they do have limited functionality.

It wouldn't help with AD though.

MCITP SQL 2005, MCSA SQL 2012
Tony Sweet
Tony Sweet
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Not to piggy back off your question but...

I am also looking for cloud based hosting for a demo environment. I know Microsoft, Google, Amazon, etc are all in a pricing war right now and cutting prices, however, I have not been able to find a comparison of these companies online. Which his better, cheaper, most flexible, etc. Are there other good hosts out there.

Basically I want to be able to get VMs ready for demo at a user group (So they may be online a day or two a month).

- Tony Sweet
RTaylor2208
RTaylor2208
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Group: General Forum Members
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Personally I would say you are better defining what you want to do and then looking at what each provider can offer to suit your requirements.

For example even just within AWS you can have a SQL Server running within an EC2 instance, this is essentially a full blown SQL Server install within a virtual machine. Depending on the functionality you require you can have the free version which is the windows OS and SQL Server 2008 R2 Express, Or the considerably more expensive versions with Standard \ Enterprise edition.

Or you can have a SQL Server Instance defined within RDS which offers limited functionality, but very little over head for maintenance.

An EC2 server can be shutdown thus not incurring any costs while inactive, but a RDS instance is chargeable by hour and cannot be shutdown.

I haven't look at other cloud providers but I suspect that its not going to be that easy to compare like for like.

MCITP SQL 2005, MCSA SQL 2012
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