FAQ

FAQ

General Questions

Technical Questions

CloudShare Environments

Sharing Environments

General Questions

What is CloudShare?

CloudShare is a cloud computing company that makes it easy to build, manage and share any business application instantly and on-demand, in the cloud. Used by individual business and IT professionals, small teams and enterprises, CloudShare offers complete and easy cloud solutions for development and testing, migration, training, demos and proofs of concept. We take away the hassle, cost and time of setting up and managing physical IT systems – there are no physical servers, installs, downloads, recoding or software licensing of any kind.

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What are the differences between CloudShare ProPlus and CloudShare Enterprise?

CloudShare Enterprise is designed for large teams, enterprises and ISVs that need to collaborate on multiple enterprise applications simultaneously. The platform supports custom branding, multi-tiered user hierarchy, advanced analytics and business workflow (including integration with Salesforce.com).

CloudShare ProPlus is designed for individual developers, consultants, solution integrators, IT professionals and small teams that want to build, manage and share multiple copies of an environment on-demand.

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What is CloudShare ProPlus?

CloudShare ProPlus is designed for individual developers, consultants, solution integrators, IT professionals and small teams. It offers a single environment with multiple virtual machines, fully licensed, preinstalled operating systems and applications (including multiple SharePoint templates), editable RAM up to 8GB and editable disk space up to 300GB respectively), up to 10 virtual CPUs and 24/7 email and Forum support. Click here for a list of available machines.

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How is CloudShare priced?

CloudShare ProPlus is $59 per month, all-inclusive. Extra RAM is available at additional cost.

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How do I try CloudShare?

If you are interested in CloudShare ProPlus, click here for a free trial (no credit card required). You will be asked to go through a brief registration process..

Alternatively, if you'd like to do a hands-on walkthrough of CloudShare Enterprise, please visit: http://www.CloudShare.com/demo.

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How do I sign up for the CloudShare ProPlus free trial?

CloudShare offers a free trial so you can test out CloudShare ProPlus and make sure it is the right fit for your needs. Simply click here to start – you will be up and running in minutes. You will be required to go through a brief registration process (no credit card required). Upon completion, a fully-featured account is yours to use for free for the trial period. During this time, you can subscribe at any time by clicking on “Subscribe” inside the application.

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How do I subscribe to CloudShare ProPlus?

Click here to subscribe online. You will be asked to go through a brief registration process and enter your credit card information. You will be billed on a monthly basis, cancelable at any time.

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How do I renew my monthly CloudShare ProPlus subscription?

You don't need to do anything to renew your monthly subscription. You will be charged at the beginning of each month for that coming month’s application usage unless you cancel your subscription.

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How do I cancel my subscription?

If you wish to cancel your subscription, click on "cancel subscription" in your "my account" page. We will be sad to see you go!

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How do I change my payment method?

To change your payment method, please contact support using the support link provided at the bottom of the page in the application.

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How do I contact Sales?

To discuss your needs related to CloudShare Enterprise, please contact us at sales@cloudshare.com. You need not contact Sales to sign up for CloudShare ProPlus - simply click here and you are on your way.

Technical Questions

What are the system requirements to use CloudShare?

CloudShare does not require software downloads or installation - the platform is accessible from any Web browser (FireFox 3.x or later, Internet Explorer 8.x or later, Safari 5 or later or Chrome 4.x or later).

For remote viewing, an add-on to the browser must be enabled - if you do not have one, it will be automatically offered to your browser when you attempt to log in, and if approved will be installed in seconds.

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How can I pre-check to see if my browser can log in to the remote machines?

Simply click on the connectivity check page here.

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What are my technical support options?

CloudShare Enterprise offers email and live telephone 24/7 support. CloudShare ProPlus support is provided through the web-based support Forum, which is accessible via the application, and 24/5 email support.

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Can I use an external Remote Desktop (RDP) client to access the machines?

Yes, you can use any external client to access the machines. Note, however, that CloudShare detects idle time and will suspend the machines after 60 minutes of idle time for CloudShare ProPlus subscribers.  We suggest you visit the machine page in your browser in order to allow us to detect activity, as our system will not be able to detect activity if you are using RDP directly.

The machine page utilizes highly sophisticated web acceleration technologies that enhance your user experience, as well as a firewall tunneling capability to comply with firewall policies. It is highly recommended you use the machine page, and not an external application, to access your virtual machines.

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What is the best way to access my virtual machines?

We recommend using the web user interface to access the virtual machines (instead of the Microsoft remote access client) for the following reasons:

Access: When using the web user interface, there is no need to copy and paste the changing IP address. You will always connect automatically to the current IP address of the virtual machine.

Web acceleration: We are using the same protocol as the external Microsoft client. However, we tunnel the traffic through a private network, achieving better responsiveness and faster traffic.

Automatic resolution: The resolution of the virtual machine's console is automatically selected based on the resolution of your screen (of course, we have a resolution selector and a full screen button).

Firewall traversal: CloudShare automatically detects and traverses common organizational firewalls using https tunneling.

Usage detection: Since you are working within our application, we detect your usage and don't suspend your environment unexpectedly.

Access multiple machines: Instead of firing up a separate session for each machines, open new machines in a new browser window or tab, and you will be able to quickly switch between the machines or stack them side-by side.CloudShare Environments

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What is a CloudShare environment?

An environment is a set of machines residing in the CloudShare cloud. You can use an environment to easily demonstrate a full enterprise software or IT system, complete with whatever software you choose. The IT system can then be shared with your peers, customers or prospects to demonstrate a new software product, to show an interesting configuration or for any other purpose.

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How do I create an environment?

One you are a subscriber, you can create an environment by clicking on “create environment” on the homepage tab.

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How long does an environment last?

Your environment will last as long as you need it to – there are no time limitations. If you invite other CloudShare ProPlus subscribers to access copies of your environment via the invitation function inside the application or by sharing a permalink (what is a permalink?), they will have 2 hours free to access your environment.

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How many environments can I own at one time?

In CloudShare ProPlus, you can “own” one environment at a time. However, you can accept an unlimited number of invitations and/or click on permalinks – those environments will appear in your account for you to view.

If you need to “own” multiple environments at the same time, you can subscribe to how many CloudShare ProPlus accounts you need, or contact Sales to discuss CloudShare TeamLabs and CloudShare Enterprise, which support multiple environments in a single account.

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What if I need more RAM for my environment?

If you need more than 8GB RAM total for your environment, simply click the new buy memory icon or the “Buy Now” and  ”Add Licenses” buttons after you login to your ProPlus account. 

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How many environment snapshots can I create?

You can take one snapshot at a time. Each subsequent snapshot will overwrite the previously saved one.

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What is auto-suspend?

Cloud computing is a resource-intensive compute environment. To protect our users from over-using resources when they are not working, our software automatically saves and suspends environments that have not been active for over 60 minutes. We call this feature auto-suspend. When you log back in, your environment will be exactly as you left it. 

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Can I configure the auto-suspend feature to keep my environment running?

Subscribe to CloudShare TeamLabs or CloudShare Enterprise, which support complete configuration of the auto-suspend feature to meet your requirements. Contact us for more information.

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How do I increase or edit RAM, disk and number of CPUs?

At any time after your environment is built, you can "edit" the environment and choose to increase the amount of RAM, the size of the disk or the number of CPUs for a certain VM.

If you need more than 8GB RAM total for your environment, simply click the new buy memory icon or the “Buy Now” and  ”Add Licenses” buttons after you login to your ProPlus account.

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How do I install my own software in these machines?

To install software, first access the machine you wish to install the software on by clicking "view machine." Once in front of the machine desktop, you have two options:

Option #1: from this machine, you have full internet access. Use FTP, Telnet, webmail, or browse to your favorite site.

Option #2: if you click to re-enable File Sharing (above, disabled), then click on My Computer on the desktop you see, you'll see your local hard drives and can copy via drag-and-drop to the desktop you see. This approach requires a reasonably high-speed connection or small files, so we do not recommend uploading hundreds of MB on your home dial-up or 128kbps DSL line.

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How do I add/remove machines?

To add or remove machines to an environment, simply click the "edit" button on the right-hand side of the page. If you do not have edit capabilities, it means that you are not the owner of the environment; rather, you have been invited to it. To "take ownership," simply click on the "take ownership" button in the application and follow the steps provided.

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Do I have administrator access to the machines?

You have Windows administrator access to all Windows machines, and root access to Linux machines.

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Why are my “View Machine” buttons are grayed out/inactive?

You are unable to view the machines while taking a snapshot. Also, when you log in to CloudShare after a period of inactivity, the machines may need a minute to "resume" from a dormant state. Check the "status" label under each machine's name; if it says "preparing" or anything but "running," it is likely your View Machine buttons will be inactive.

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What should I do after taking a snapshot?

After the snapshot is completed, you will be able to share the environment with peers. To share, simply fill the quick share form in the environment view, or click the "share" button on the specific environment in your home page.

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How do I restore the environment state to a saved snapshot?

You can save a snapshot of the environment which includes the machines RAM and disk states, even including the state of the applications running in the machines. To revert to a previously saved snapshot, click "revert" in the action buttons on the right.

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Can I add more machines at a later stage?

After setting up your initial environment, you can always go back and edit it, adding or removing machines.

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Can I change the description at a later stage?

After setting up your initial environment, you can always go back and edit descriptions and names or add/remove machines. All of this functionality is available from the completed “environment” view.

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What-does-the-environment-resource-use" gauge measure?

This gauge measures the amount of resources your environment will consume. CloudShare ProPlus subscribers can edit the resources for each VM (RAM, disk and number of CPUs), increasing the environment size.

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If I edit the environment resources, will the same resources be available to peers I invite?

Yes, invitees get an exact clone of your environment, including any changes made to hardware.

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How do I reduce HDD size?

Because HDD access is not always sequential, it is difficult to reduce HDD size without inadvertently deleting data. Thus, we do not allow reducing HDD size. As a workaround, you can copy data to an identical VM with a smaller disk, and delete the original VM

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Can I use HTML in my environment description?

The environment description allows for rich text, including different fonts, colors and highlights as available in the editor. You can also include pictures and flash movies which are already accessible via a URL. The editor will automatically embed these elements.

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Where is the environment description displayed?

The environment description is displayed in a box in the homepage of every user you invite to your environment.

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How do I share my environment with my peers?

CloudShare is all about sharing with peers, customers, prospects and partners. There are two ways to share an independent copy of your environment with others:Invitations: To share your environment, go to the environment page, take a snapshot in the state you feel your peers will find useful, then fill the "quick share" form (just their name and email address required) in the environment page to invite a peer. You can also go to the “Sharing” tab and invite users. This is a dedicated invitation to an individual that cannot be reused. (What is an invitation?)

Permalinks: A permalink is a permanent link to your environment. Each time someone clicks on your permalink, an independent, separate copy of your environment will be instantiated for that user to view, test and edit – without affecting your original prototype. The same permalink can be used over and over again. (What is a permalink?)

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What is an invitation?

Invitations are one way to share an unlimited number of independent copies of your environment with peers, customers, prospects or other end users. Simply go to the “Sharing” tab and enter the person’s name and email address. They will receive an email with a URL to an independent copy of your environment to edit, configure and save. Changes that they make in their environment do not affect yours.

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A permanent link, or permalink, is another way to share your environment with multiple people. A permalink is a link to your environment that is clickable by anyone you choose to share it with (on your website, in blogs or your other social media vehicles, via email, in training sessions or at conferences and events at which you are speaking). Each time someone clicks on your permalink, an independent, separate copy of your environment will be instantiated for that user to view, test and edit – without affecting your original prototype. The same permalink can be used over and over again.

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You can create a permalink to your environment directly from the “Sharing” tab in the application, by clicking on “Enable Permalink.” From there, you can copy the permalink and post anywhere you would like to share it!

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Can I collaborate with my peers, in real time, in my environment?

Right now, you and your peers can work on identical clones of the environment. To work together on the same VM, you must use the same CloudShare account and use the “console” access to control that VM, as Microsoft RDP allows only one user at a time.

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What does the status column mean in the Sharing tab?

The invitation status goes through the following stages:

Pending: The invitation email has been sent, but your peer has not yet performed any action in the system. You may want to contact him and verify that the email was received.

Accepted: Your peer accepted the invitation, but has not accessed the environment.

In use: Your peer has accessed the environment.

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What snapshot of the environment is shared?

You always share the latest snapshot taken of the environment. When a peer clicks on the invitation link sent, a copy of the latest snapshot will be generated.

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How many invitations can I send?

You can issue an unlimited number of invitations.

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How long do invitations to my environments last?

Your invitees will have 14 days to click on the link in your email invitation and access your environment before the invitation expires. Once they access your environment, they will have 2 hours during which to view, edit, and save changes to the environment. If they would like to make the environment their own, they will need to "take ownership." (How do I "take ownership" of an environment to which I was invited?)

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What if I send an invitation to someone who is not currently a CloudShare ProPlus subscriber?

When someone accepts an invitation that you have sent them – or clicks on a permalink - and logs in the environment that you have made available for them, they will automatically have 2 hours to access the environment and be enrolled in a free trial. However, if your invitees wish to make that environment theirs - which means they can make that environment their own "gold master" and add/delete machines, take snapshots and invite others or create a permalink - they will need to "take ownership" of that environment.

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How do I "take ownership" of an environment to which I was invited?

To "take ownership" of an environment means that you can now create your own prototype environment based on the copy you were issued. You can add/delete machines, take a snapshot, issue invitations and more. To take ownership, simply click on the "take ownership" button in the application.

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When I "take ownership" of an environment, is it free?

You can "take ownership" of an environment for free if you are enrolled in the free trial or if you are a current ProPlus subscriber. Note that for non-subscribers, accepting an invitation or clicking on a permalink automatically enrolls you in the free trial.

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Do my environments expire?

As long as you are a CloudShare ProPlus subscriber, your environment will not expire.

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How can I remove the names of people I've invited from the Sharing screen?

You can remove invites before they're accepted. The invitations will automatically be moved to the 'expired invitations' screen if they expire without being accepted. You can upgrade to CloudShare Enterprise for additional control over invitations.

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Can invited people make changes to a shared environment?

Invited peers receive an email with a link pointing to a copy of the environment. The copy is generated in seconds the moment the invitee clicks the link. The copy is always created from the latest snapshot, and is private. Invitees can change the copy to their liking without affecting your original prototype.

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Can I grant others edit capability for my own environment?

Your peers will be able to run and modify the environment copies you share with them, but to centrally manage the configuration and environment lifecycle, reporting and many other advanced features, please contact Sales to discuss CloudShare Enterprise.

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Can I create multi-tiered user hierarchy in CloudShare ProPlus?

No, CloudShare ProPlus does not support multi-tiered user hierarchy and associated security policies, tracking, and management capabilities. If your business needs multi-tiered user hierarchy, pleasecontact Sales for more information about CloudShare Enterprise.

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How many environments can I "own" at a single time?

You can only own a single environment at a time. If you attempt to create another environment, you will receive a warning that you already own one. You will need to decide which environment to "own" - after you have taken ownership of an environment, the only way to not own it is to delete it. If you need more than one environment at a time, please contact Sales for more information about CloudShare Enterprise.

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How are passwords managed?

CloudShare makes sure every environment starts out with unique passwords on all virtual machines. To accomplish this, when an environment is created, either from a permalink, an invitation or from new machine templates, we access the virtual machine and customize (randomize) the passwords. This means that there is no need for you to go into the VM and change passwords on your own, but if you do find the need to do that, you must update the system with the new passwords configured, so we can keep performing administrative tasks on the virtual machines. Otherwise, you will not be able to take snapshots of the environment.

To keep the system appraised of passwords you configured on the VMs, access your environment, click "Edit Environment->"Edit users and access.

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How do you back up data?

We backup the content to an offsite backup location and, in general, use enterprise best practices to insure uninterrupted service.

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Where are your data centers located?

Our datacenter is in Miami, FL

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Can I use email from a CloudShare PC?

Yes. From your CloudShare Environment you can read and send email if your mail server allows it. With a CloudShare ProPlus subscription you can setup an email server in your environment but can only access it from machines within your environment (i.e. cannot access from the internet). With CloudShare Enterprise you can set an email server in your CloudShare environment and access it from anywhere as long as your prototype configuration allows it

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What disaster recovery systems does CloudShare have?

We recommend you backup your data and integrate it with your standard disaster recovery process.

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How fast are the CloudShare connections?

We guarantee at least 3Mbps (Mega Bits per Second) connection speed.

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Do I get a static or dynamic IP address?

A static IP is typically not required. For web applications, one can use the Web Access feature, which provides persistent hostname to each machine for HTTP and HTTPS. You can purchase ProPlus with Always On for the price of $699 per month per 8GB of RAM. The IP address should stay the same, but we offer no guarantee that the IP address will not change.

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What software applications are included in CloudShare?

The list of applications is growing continuously. You can find the full list of currently available machines on our website. Click here.

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What templates are available?

The list of templates is growing continuously. You can find the full list of currently available templates on our website. Click here.

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What SharePoint templates do you provide?

The list of templates is growing continuously. You can find the full list of currently available templates on our website. Click here.

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Can I connect to my corporate network?

Yes, you can connect your CloudShare Environment to your corporate network via VPN.

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