Rackspace CEO Taylor Rhodes Joins Zenoss' Board

Zenoss appointed Rackspace CEO Taylor Rhodes to its board of directors on Monday, a move expected to lend the developer of IT monitoring and analytics solutions greater insights into the technological needs of managed service providers.

Zenoss, which open-sourced its core product soon after its founding in 2005, began developing its channel in earnest only a couple of months ago. Business is booming with MSPs, Chairman and CEO Greg Stock told CRN.

Because the Austin, Texas-based vendor is seeing a large percentage of customers access the technology through managed clouds, of which Rackspace is the largest, Rhodes will be a great resource on the board, Stock said.

[Related: Zenoss Launches Channel Program]

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"We wanted more visibility into the needs of not just enterprise customers, but these MSPs," Stock told CRN. "It really is very different technologies that are required, more scalable technologies."

Because MSPs manage multiple customers, in addition to greater scalability, they need software solutions that are distinct, with separate instances for each customer but easily managed form a single console, according to Stock.

Another industry trend that will make Rhodes a valuable board member is the evolution of converged infrastructure, Stock said.

With the convergence of technologies -- from cloud to virtual machines to traditional hardware to the emerging Internet of Things -- "the environment is getting more and more complex, so more enterprises are moving to MSPs to solve problems," Stock said.

"With Rhodes, we are going to have a firsthand view from a very significant company to help drive the product in a way benefiting MSPs and not just enterprises," he told CRN.

Since Rackspace rejected all acquisition offers in September and removed itself from the market, the IaaS provider, based in San Antonio, has doubled down on a managed cloud strategy that helps businesses employ cloud resources without needing to contract with or staff cloud experts.

Rhodes, a former U.S. Marine Corps officer, took over as CEO concurrently with the company's announcement that it would remain independent.

Zenoss offers an enterprise version of its open-source product, a unified, single-pane view of everything from the operating system, applications and network devices, to compute, storage and virtualized components. The technology is used in small data centers and at scale by large cloud providers.

Rackspace, Verizon, Telstra, Accenture and Cisco are all customers, deploying Zenoss in their managed environments for operating and optimizing the services they provide their customers.