IBM SoftLayer vs Rackspace

IBM SoftLayer
SoftLayer gives you the highest performing cloud infrastructure available. One platform that takes data centers around the world that are full of the widest range of cloud computing options, and then integrates and automates everything.
Rackspace Cloud offers four alternative hosting products: Cloud Servers for on-demand computing power; Cloud Sites for robust web hosting; Cloud Load Balancers for easy, on-demand load balancing and high availability; and Cloud Files for elastic online file storage and CDN.Rackspace Cloud hosting customers never need to worry about buying new hardware to meet increasing traffic demands or huge traffic spikes.
Face to face in the news:

2010 - Rackspace wants to be Linux for Cloud Computing. Beware IBM SoftLayer

As we recently mentioned, the private clouds have become the necessary intermediate step in moving companies to public cloud platforms. In result we see more and more private cloud solutions on the market. Basically it's a game for IT giants: IBM, Oracle, HP. These vendors use to supply the ready-made cloud solutions: servers + virtualization + operating systems + DBMS ... So companies are forced to buy all this staff combined and can't use the equipment in the existing data centers. It's like buying a computer from Apple with all included. But recently the pure software solutions for creating enterprise clouds appear. Moreover, one of the major cloud providers Rackspace has initiated the project of creating the free open-source platform for building clouds - OpenStack - something similar to Linux in the world of computers.

This project is supported by NASA, Citrix, Dell, Limelight, Rightscale, NTT. They are going not just to develop a private cloud solution, but to create an open standard for private and public cloud platforms. Thus, companies will be able to deploy cloud technologies in their existing data centers (at more affordable price), and then easily move their IT infrastructure to third-party provider that uses the same cloud platform. Of course, the first of such providers is Rackspace.

This Rackspace's move seems to be a very strong argument in competition with Amazon, Microsoft, Google and VMWare. Even if OpenStack will not become a common cloud standard - anyway Rackspace will attract the developer community to contribute to their own cloud platform. The key OpenStack elements will appear in September and October.