There are millions of free downloads on the Internet, so why is FastScale’s Stack Manager any different? Stack Manager allows organizations to package workloads based on popular technologies for Linux environments and transport the workload to the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). In my cloud post last week, I explained how the EC2 cloud is a large collection of compute resources. These can be developed entirely in-house or with a tool like Stack Manager to then be transported to the cloud.

Stack Manager is composed of four main thin-provisioned software stacks referred to as DABs. Other products from FastScale work for thin footprints through an incredibly cool repository. Stack Manager has a repository for the following DABs:

LAMP – A standard base for many Linux environments, Linux (operating system), Apache (Web engine), MySQL (database), and PHP (script engine)

MediaWiki– The software package that was initially used for Wikipedia

Tomcat– Popular Web servlet container engine

Drupal – Content management system engine

Each of the DABs run in a CentOS Linux environment through Stack Manager. CentOS is the free equivalent of Red Hat Enterprise Linux without any licensing costs. These CentOS environments utilize a “just enough operating system,” or JeOS (pronounced juice), to run what is configured. Stack Manager earns its wings by allowing developers and administrators to create portable packages based on these environments. These packages can be transported directly to the EC2 cloud and run there. FastScale’s thin footprint can help in controlling storage costs in the Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) cloud for the total solution.

Where does this fit into your cloud radar? This approach makes the cloud quite a bit more accessible. Share your comments on Stack Manager and your organization’s stance on cloud computing below.