We removed our free Sandbox April 25th.
You can read more on our blog.

F.A.Q.

Can I build my business on DotCloud?

Yes. We want you to feel safe running your product on our servers. We’re building a world-class ops and support organization to offer you the guarantees you need. If there’s something missing that would make you feel safer, please tell us!

I emailed you a question. Why didn’t you answer?

We’re trying hard to answer every question as fast as possible. We’re getting a lot of attention since our launch, and are doing our best to keep up!

Where is DotCloud hosted?

DotCloud runs on Amazon EC2. More specifically, we run on the us-east-1 region, across multiple availability zones.

Can I use multiple databases together?

Absolutely, you can combine as many components as you want in your stack. DotCloud is designed specifically to support heterogenous stacks.

Can I add or remove components later?

Yes! For example, you can add memcache when you’re ready for it. Or you can stop using Cassandra when you realize it doesn’t live up to the hype. And so on.

You don’t support my favorite database/language!

We are releasing our components gradually. Some are still in alpha and aren’t accessible to all beta users. If you’d like to alpha-test a particular component, let us know!

Do I need to use git to use DotCloud?

No. We want to help all developers - and not all developers use git.

Can I “git push” my code to DotCloud?

Yes you can! Not with the “git push” command per se, but our CLI is able to leverage git or hg if you use them.

See how DotCloud handles Git and Mercurial for an in-depth explanation of the push mechanism.

How can you be experts in all these software components?

We are experts at operating and scaling heterogenous web applications. There is a learning curve to properly configure, fine-tune and scale each of these components. Our job is to tackle that learning curve so you don’t have to.

It’s hard work for us. But 90% of the work is the same across all deployments: there are only so many ways to compute, store and move bits around. We take advantage of that fact to deliver massive savings in engineering and sysadmin time.

Can I run DotCloud on a different cloud than EC2?

Not right now. However, this is on our roadmap. If you feel strongly about it, let us know and it will happen sooner!

How do you handle scaling?

You may scale up any component in your stack by allocating more instances to it. Instances are lightweight units of parallel computation.

DotCloud configures new instances automatically, by applying the best scaling strategy specific to each component. For example, an application server will be automatically attached to our http load balancers.

Sometimes different scaling strategies are necessary for different usage profiles: for example PostgreSQL will benefit from additional slave in a read-intensive environment, but will need a more sophisticated setup in write-intensive scenarios. We will offer a choice of scaling strategy whenever it’s relevant.

Can you magically scale a component not designed to scale?

No. Different software components scale differently. Some can’t be scaled at all. Our job is to find the very best scaling strategy for each component, and apply it automatically, so you don’t have to.

If a part of your application is hard to scale, we recommend isolating it from the rest of your stack. For example, a legacy library can be wrapped in a background process, and communicate with the rest of your application through a message queue.

How do you handle upgrades?

Each component has its own release cycle, managed by our in-house expert. Upgrades are prudent, thoroughly tested, and favor stability.

If there is demand for it, we will also publish a bleeding edge version as a separate component.

How do I use my own domain name with DotCloud?

Sure! See the custom domains documentation.

How can I use SSL with DotCloud?

Each web application running on dotCloud is available over HTTPS as well. If your application is available over http://<myapp>.dotcloud.com/, it will also be available over https://<myapp>.dotcloud.com/.

Note, however, that if you want to have SSL on your own domain name, you will need to purchase your own SSL certificate, and to upgrade to one of our paying offers. Why? Because we will need to dedicate a load balancer instance to your application (since SSL requires at least one IP address per domain, or more accurately, per certificate).

How can I setup a crontab?

You can do it manually (using “dotcloud ssh” then “crontab”), or automatically through a postinstall script. This is documented in the Periodic Tasks guide.