Lately, the topic of multi-tenancy and single tenancy has again come up for discussion. A leading on-premise vendor recently argued in favor of single tenancy by saying: “The bad thing with multitenancy is when it goes down, you guys write about it on the front page. I don’t want to be on the front page for anything bad.”
Let me explain what this means for the customer versus the vendor by using an analogy.
Airplanes carry a lot of people. When they go down or even have a small scare, they make front page news. This, over the years, has made aircraft manufacturers like Boeing and airlines that run them prioritize safety and trust over every other bell and whistle feature.
Motorcycles are different. One goes down, a person dies. But it doesn’t make frontpage news.
So what’s safer? Which mode of transport is actually safer for you?
(Hint:Airplanes are one of the safest means of transport while motorcycles are the least safe – even though airplanes make headlines.)
Multi-tenant software businesses work very hard to keep the systems up and running, to keep them safe, to earn and retain the trust of their customers – prioritizing it over bells and whistles. It took Google all of less than an hour to recover from the badware problem – because many of its customers were simultaneously impacted – and fixing one customer’s problem meant fixing it for everyone. Imagine, a similar problem in your favorite OS, and how many days of patching and fixing it would take to deliver the fix.
Single-tenant software is good for the vendor. Your instance goes down, you and only you are impacted – even if its down for hours or days. The vendor can resolve the issue at the earliest or at leisure – with no risk to its own business either way! Your fortunes are tied to only yours – not the vendor’s and not of others.
As Dirty Harry would say: Do you feel lucky? Well do ya punk?