Cloud Connect Santa Clara Day 2: OpenStack's Debutante Ball

Matthew Weinberger

February 16, 2012

3 Min Read
Cloud Connect Santa Clara Day 2: OpenStack's Debutante Ball


What better complement to a vendor-agnostic show than to spotlight the vendor-agnostic, open source OpenStack cloud platform? And, truly, Cloud Connect Santa Clara was nothing less than a debutante ball for the relatively fledgling OpenStack, with the platform a topic of debate and a point of value for several vendors.

The surest sign came when Nebula CEO, OpenStack co-founder and former NASA CTO Chris Kemp got up on stage Feb. 14, 2012, to explain how the current cloud model was failing large enterprises, with most cloud adoption occurring among startups, SMBs and the very edges of big businesses — even though the larger enterprises stand to benefit most from scale-out workloads, big data handling, higher agility and all the other benefits of the cloud that we talk about here on Talkin’ Cloud.

The solution to this problem: an ecosystem that enables a secure, self-service private cloud, with cutting-edge monitoring and management capabilities, that prevents lock-in and, most of all, is mature enough to actually meet customer needs. It also needs to be able to burst workloads seamlessly into a service provider’s cloud, which also means it needs an open infrastructure. In short, the industry needs OpenStack, Kemp said.

(Two points I want to make about Kemp’s speech: First, his presentation is available free online and well worth your perusal if you’ve been following the OpenStack project. Second, his keynote was more than a little self-serving, since Nebula has built its own private cloud infrastructure offerings on top of OpenStack.)

Other examples of OpenStack affection I saw on this Valentine’s Day event included solution provider Mirantis heavily hyping its OpenStack deployment and training services, HP Cloud Services hyping its OpenStack-based public cloud offering (doing the same during its own keynote), and the announcement that solution provider Redapt is now working closely with Rackspace on the Rackspace Cloud: Private Edition offering.

Mirantis EVP of Marketing and Alliances Boris Renski, said his company has done no fewer than 20 OpenStack deployments, and customers are starting to come to them asking for an OpenStack-powered private cloud.

Meanwhile, Rackspace Hosting CTO John Engates told me his company — which, with NASA, co-founded OpenStack — is ramping up to offer services based on the platform in a big way. And the nice part about OpenStack being open source is that even if it weren’t so similar to Rackspace’s existing cloud platform, partners and customers are getting notified of big new changes or feature-adds six months before they go into production.

And those were just the highlights, with several other OpenStack community members in attendence. Now, open source was well-represented elsewhere in the conference — Red Hat Storage had a booth, and Citrix was there to promote CloudStack — but essentially any vision of the future for the cloud at large involved OpenStack in some capacity. It seems the little cloud standard that could is coming into its own.

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