Cloud Feeds Overview


What is Cloud Feeds?

Cloud Feeds is a new service that accepts and validates event notifications from other Rackspace Cloud services, and presents the data to you in a standardized and easy to digest way.

Modern complex computing environments generate large amounts of data related to system events, security, and utilization of resources. For example: You may receive notifications to let you know a server has rebooted, or to inform you of a server's network bandwidth usage for a time period, or in response to a security condition such as a failed login attempt.

Managing the information driven by event notifications is problematic when the data sources use differing transmission formats and protocols. Gaining access to this information is further complicated when working with virtualized Cloud-based systems, where infrastructure-level event data may not be available to you. Your ability to access, manage, and react to this information can have major impact on your mission-critical processes and applications.

That’s where Cloud Feeds comes in.

Cloud Feeds provides a service that accepts event notifications from other Rackspace Cloud services, validates them, and makes the information available to you in a reliable, secure, and standardized way. Critical business processes that rely on this information can now be enabled for the Cloud, just as with an on-premises computing environment. In addition, since Cloud Feeds utilizes the Atom Publishing Protocol (RFC-5023) and Atom Syndication Formatted events (RFC-4287), customers can access notifications from multiple Rackspace Cloud services using a single protocol and format, saving time and expense.

How to grant access

There is no registration required to access Cloud Feeds. It is already available through your Cloud Control Panel. Log in and assign the role "cloudfeeds:observer" to one or more users.

To add this role:

  1. Log in to the Rackspace Cloud Control Panel.
  2. Click the Account menu pull-down (your account name) and click User Management.
  3. On the User Management screen, click the name of the user you want to modify.
    Under Product Access, make sure the Custom (Per Product Access) radio button is selected
  4. On the Feeds pull down menu, select Observer and save your changes.

Note: For more information about role-based access control, see the Knowledge Center article Overview: Role Based Access Control (RBAC).

How to access Cloud Feeds

Cloud Feeds are accessed via the simple ATOM Publishing Protocol, which is HTTP-based. There are a number of tools available that can send HTTP requests and capture the output, including:

  • cURL, a command-line tool (available at http://curl.haxx.se/)
  • The Mozilla Firefox REST client
    (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/restclient/)
  • Chrome Poster (https://code.google.com/p/chrome-poster/)
  • RESTclient, a Java application used to test RESTful web services (http://code.google.com/p/rest-client/)

To retrieve events from a feed, send an HTTP GET request to the appropriate URL. The URL depends on the data center, feed name, and your tenant ID. You will need a valid authentication token to make the request.

By default, the 25 most current events are retrieved first. You can specify how many events to retrieve, or modify search parameters to retrieve only events that match a certain criteria. The results are returned in Atom Syndication Format, which includes information to help you navigate the list of events in the feed.

For More Information

If you'd like more information, a list of URLs, more information about the feeds and events available, how to determine your tenant ID and retrieve authentication tokens, and supported request options, is available at docs.rackspace.com in the Getting Started with Cloud Feeds and the Cloud Feeds Developer Guide

Getting help and providing feedback

If you have questions about Cloud Feeds, please see the Cloud Feeds FAQ.

During the Early Access program, support for Cloud Feeds will be available via email only during regular business hours. If you have furthers questions or a suggestion, please contact us at feeds-support@rackspace.com

You may also post questions and other discussions in the Rackspace Community API/SDK Developer Forum.

Your feedback is a key ingredient of Rackspace’s success. If you have suggestions for enhancements to Cloud Feeds, please post your idea on the Rackspace Product Feedback site. There is a category for Cloud Feeds.

 



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