Easy Deployment with Digital Ocean
Simple, clean, competitive cost relative to AWS, best technology (all SSD), easy of use–all these things describe Amazon's newest competitor, Digital Ocean.
DO's interface is clean and simple. A few clicks, and you can spin up an instance–they call it a Droplet–in something like less than 30 seconds. Images can include prebuilt Ubuntu and other OS's, prebuilt applications (Ruby on Rails, PHP etc.), or snapshots/backups of your own images.
Choose the size of the instance you desire, which are all utilizing cutting-edge SSD's (Digital Ocean leads the market in SSD usage), which I think leads to snappier response times by default over HD-based systems. The cheapest instance runs you $5 a month.
Choose your datacenter, and there are a number of options. I've used both New York and San Francisco and speed tests show nearly the same results. Their largest datacenter is in New York and since this is where their headquarters is, I presume they'll be using the newest equipment (not a scientific conclusion).
Importantly, any images you save in one datacenter will not be available in other centers unless you do a transfer, so you may want to centralize, at least initially, to keep things simple.
Lastly, you do have a few options to set. One is for utilizing your own SSH key (highly recommended), which you should create an upload.. If you plan on communicating between instances, select private networking.
That's it. Your instance will be up an running in under a minute.
Carson R Cole