Announcing Next-Gen Qbox

Posted by Mark Brandon June 22, 2021

The entire Qbox team and I are all proud to unveil Next-Gen Qbox, a new provisioning system that will make this foundational provisioning tool easier to use so we can, in turn, create the features and improvements that our customers have been requesting.

Not all of these features are available today — but some of them are available, most notably a true Role-based Access Control that provides flexibility to revoke or assign permissions and privileges to users, ranging from provisioning resources, to managing those resources, to billing and account control.

We have crafted tutorials to help you walk through these improvements, and I shall tease here some of the upcoming improvements that we will have coming out over the next few months.

(Please note: customers who wish to stay on the legacy system until such time that they feel it is opportune to migrate can continue to use our system without any changes.)

 

Why Next-Gen?

To provide a backstory to Next-Gen Qbox: when the company was founded in 2012, before containers and microservices-based approaches were fully baked, we built our hosted service in a monolithic Ruby App. Over the years, as improvements were bolted on — and especially when we migrated our single-tenant architecture to a Kubernetes-based multi-tenant architecture and started using Golang — this system became unwieldy. 

Even relatively easy features were difficult to properly test and make production-worthy, often taking much longer than our competition who had come around to utilizing a microservices approach. 

We eventually concluded that our monolith was causing us to fall behind some of the features of others in the market. 

So we decided to completely re-architect provisioning, billing, back-end administration, monitoring, and security. Essentially, we built from scratch in Golang, and it was an enormous challenge to replace the functionality of an old system on a 1:1 basis.

Features Available Today

But we did it, and among the features available today:

  • Role-based Access Control: Invite an unlimited number of team members and give them control appropriate to their level, whether it is administrative, viewing, or billing.
  • Simplified and improved UI: Especially for multi-cluster deployments, the new UI can give you an easy picture of your cluster health, resource usage, audit logs, and billing rates.
  • Improved High Availability: By default, multi-node clusters will be provisioned across regional availability zones, giving users added protection against AZ disasters.
  • More intuitive backups: The new cluster management page gives users a one-click backup option.
  • More intuitive credentialing: More secure and best-practice credential downloads allow one-click generation of secret keys.
  • Audit logging: This allows users to know what actions have taken place from the Dashboard UI.
  • Customizable alerting capability: Users can customize who gets what alerts.

Future Improvements In the Pipeline

As I mentioned, the primary goal of this new system is to make it easier and faster for us to unveil future features — and now that the foundational system is complete, we can finally start the backlog moving. Without going too far out on a limb with regard to timelines, I’ll give you a tease of what’s in store over the coming months:

  • Privately hosted deployments: As of now, a user’s resources are spun up on one of our company’s many Kubernetes clusters. For some, this may not make sense, especially if users have compliance frameworks, forward pricing contracts (aka Reserved Instances) that make in-house infrastructure far less expensive, or private cloud infrastructure based on Kubernetes.
  • Additional public clouds: We will soon expand beyond AWS to include Azure, Google Cloud, and an edge cloud solution.
  • Enhanced infrastructure monitoring: We will provide an observability package that can be used for both your Qbox infrastructure and any other infrastructure you choose to instrument.
  • Professional services: Over the years, our team has gotten quite good at the prime use cases of Elasticsearch, including Observability, SIEM, Enterprise Search, Ecommerce Search, and Geosearch. We are ready to move up the value chain into application-level support.
  • Additional technologies and platforms. We are quietly adding expertise around other open source enterprise tech other than Elasticsearch, and that will be available to spin up in your Qbox environment.
  • License certainty. Like everybody else in the open source ecosystem, we have been monitoring the quasi-religious war developing around SSPL, the Elastic License, Open Distro, and the new fork of Elasticsearch known as Opensearch that is spearheaded by a consortium of participants (most notably AWS). We have a solution for all users while still supporting the open source ecosystem and the people inside and outside of Elastic who have forged this world-beating platform.

So, there you have an overview of new features available today and of those items in our pipeline. 

We invite you to sign up for Next-Gen Qbox today. (If you choose to continue using our Legacy System, be sure to select “Legacy Login” from our home page.) 

As always, I am always open to feedback from our customers. Feel free to book time on my calendar or to send me an email at the details below.

Sincerely,


Mark Brandon, CEO, Qbox, Inc.

Mark [at] qbox [dot] io

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