Overview of Cloud Block Storage

  • Last updated on: 2019-03-01
  • Authored by: Rackspace Support

Rackspace Cloud Block Storage is a block-level storage solution that allows you to expand the storage capacity of your Rackspace Next Generation Cloud Servers. This means that you can increase your storage without increasing the size or capacity of your server or by provisioning new ones. Once you mount and format your drive, you can use it just like a regular hard drive attached to your server. Or you can detach your block storage volume from one server and attach it to another. Or you can delete your server, keeping your data intact and ready for the next time you need it. And since you’re leveraging the power of the Cloud, you only pay for what you use. Cloud Block Storage offers you power and ease with the kind of storage that works for you. For information on Cloud Block Storage and Cloud Backup options on General Purpose servers, see Best Practices for Backing Up Your Data: Cloud Block Storage versus Cloud Backup.

There are two types of volumes that you can attach to your server:

  • A standard speed option for customers who just need additional storage on their Cloud server
  • A high performance option for databases and high performance applications, leveraging solid state drives for speed

Both types are priced per gigabyte (GB) of storage and not by input/output operations per second (IOPS), which can be difficult to predict or control.

Uses of Cloud Block Storage

Cloud Block Storage has the following use cases:

  • Mount a drive to a server to scale storage without paying for more compute capability
  • Add standard speed storage for customers who just need additional storage on their server
  • Add high performance storage for databases and high performance applications, leveraging solid state drives for speed
  • Detach your block storage and delete your server, keeping your data available and your costs down, because you only pay for what you use
  • Re-attach your block storage volume and move data from one server to another

Access Cloud Block Storage

Access Cloud Block Storage the way you like: you can use it through the GUI interface of the Cloud Control Panel or through the API. This product introduction walks you through Cloud Control Panel access. If you prefer to interact with Cloud Block Storage programmatically, view the Developer Guide.

Limits of Cloud Block Storage

Cloud Block Storage has the following limits:

  • 50 GB to 1 TB for SSD volumes
  • 75 GB to 1 TB for SATA volumes
  • 14 volumes max / server - operating system (OS) dependent
  • 10 TB of SATA and 10 TB of SSD in each region - This is the default for all new customers. Customers can request limit increases if more capacity is needed over the default limits. Please contact Rackspace Support, your Account Manager, or your Service Delivery Manager for more information.

Cloud Block Storage terminology

You may run across some unfamiliar terms in this Getting Started Guide. The following list gives definitions for common terms that Cloud Block Storage uses:

  • Instance: An instance is a virtual machine that runs inside the cloud.
  • Instance type: An instance type describes the compute, memory and storage capacity of Nova computing instances. In layman’s terms, this is the size (in terms of vCPUs, RAM, and so forth) of the virtual server that you will be launching.
  • Region: The location of your server and storage volumes. You should create your block storage volumes in the same data center as your server to avoid bandwidth fees.
  • Snapshot: A snapshot is a point in time copy of the data contained in a volume.
  • Volume: A volume is a detachable block storage device. You can think of it like a USB hard drive. It can only be attached to one instance at a time.
  • Volume type: The volume type is the type of a block storage volume. There are two types: SATA for standard performance and SSD for high performance.

Cloud Block Storage product overview contents

In this product overview, you learn how to perform the following tasks:

Let’s get started and create your first volume.

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