RackSpace's OpenStack targets cloud lock-in
IDG News Service - Rackspace's contribution of code to a new open-source project called OpenStack could help establish a counterweight to larger and proprietary players like Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), according to some observers.
OpenStack, which was announced Monday, will include the code behind Rackspace's Cloud Files and Cloud Servers technology. NASA is also involved, contributing software that runs its own Nebula cloud platform.
The first component, OpenStack Object Storage, is based on Cloud Files and is available now. The second piece, a compute-provisioning engine based on the Cloud Servers and Nebula technologies, will be released later this year.
Open-sourcing Rackspace's code will increase the rate of innovation around it, and eliminate lock-in fears among clients, which is one of the biggest obstacles to the adoption of cloud services, said Mark Collier, vice president of business development. "If we're accelerating the industry, that's good for us," he said.
OpenStack will be available under the Apache 2.0 license, with RackSpace employees serving as project leads, Collier said. But the governance framework has been deliberately structured to give others plenty of say, he added.
In addition, anyone will be able to take the code and form an offshoot, or "fork," he added.
Meanwhile, NASA is happy to see its code included in OpenStack because if the platform matures enough, it could save the government valuable resources, said Chris Kemp, CTO of IT for the space agency.
"Our perfect scenario is to get out of the cloud R&D business altogether," he said. "That would be a great day, if we can bake enough of NASA's requirements into OpenStack. It gets us back into the space exploration business."
OpenStack will need additional backing in order to succeed, but an ecosystem already seems to be forming. Chip makers Advanced Micro Devices and Intel, server giant Dell, virtualization specialist Citrix, and cloud management tools vendors Cloudkick and Rightscale are involved, among others.
Overall, the initial signs are positive for OpenStack, Forrester Research analyst James Staten said in a blog post Monday.
OpenStack will be going up against an ever-burgeoning pack of would-be cloud platform providers, such as VMWare and CA Technologies, but it's unclear whether those companies can provide "the robust feature set provided by some of the leading public IaaS [infrastructure as a service] platform clouds today," he said. "The short answer is we really don't know. While each claim a few customer references - whether named or not - few really portray a story of maturity yet."
Meanwhile, OpenStack may have "the more credible story enterprise infrastructure & operations professionals have been waiting on," given Rackspace's stature in the public IaaS market, Staten said.
- Securing Mobile App Data - Comparing Containers and App Wrappers Analysts agree that Mobile Device Management (MDM) is not enough when it comes to securing app data. Although it remains a critical component...
- IPv6 Fundamentals IPv6 is needed to sustain the growth of the Internet. The transition from IPv4 will require planning and likely some degree of support...
- Optimize IT Performance & Availability: Four Steps to Establish Effective IT Management Baselines More than ever before, your company's ability to grow hinges on IT performance and availability. Download this how-to report on establishing IT baselines,...
- Considerations for Embracing Wireless Monitoring Employee behavior is once again driving major changes for IT departments - this time it's BYOD. This report details three critical steps to...
- Live Webcast Master the Changing SAP Landscape with Performance Management SAP landscapes are not getting simpler. Gradually, business processes that used to be contained on a single SAP system now involve a range...
- Accelerate your innovation with IBM Bluemix™ Join us for a webcast introducing the new IBM BluemixTM. IBM Bluemix (www.bluemix.net) is a developer oriented Platform as a Service (PaaS) environment...
- On-Demand Webinar: Beyond the Enterprise App Store If you already have a few projects that are RED on your project timeline then join us so you can free up your... All Applications White Papers | Webcasts