Acquia today accomplished their goal of releasing a commercially supported version of the open source content management system Drupal. At the same time, they've launched the Acquia Network, a service that offers site management tools and various subscription-base levels of support for anyone running Drupal 6.For many organizations, the challenge presented by Drupal is that while it's a powerful and flexible system, there hasn't historically been an "official" support model. Don't get me wrong - the Drupal community is very helpful and enthusiastic, but when your site goes down, you're stuck posting question and waiting for responses, or hoping your developer and site administrators can help out.
With this week's announcement, Acquia hopes to change that. They offer four main things: Acquia Drupal, their customized version of Drupal 6.4, the Acquia Network, which provides site management and monitoring, a dedicated team for Drupal technical support and lastly, professional services for organizations that need help getting Drupal up and running.
While Acquia Drupal may certainly may be of some interest, it's Acquia's technical support and the Acquia Network that is likely to win them fans and customers. The subscription levels for the Acquia Network range from free (minimal support, access to the forums) up to Elite. Even the free version offers, access to a library of documentation, automated upgrades for your Drupal installation, site monitoring, integrated comment spam blocking and other goodies.
For organizations running Drupal 6, giving the Acquia Network a try seems about as close to a no-brainer as you can get. And for those people considering giving Drupal a try, this makes an already solid platform even stronger.
Check out the announcement from Joshua Brauer on the Acquia blog for more information. The Acquia FAQ is also very detailed, and gives a nice overview of the technical details of the offerings.