Essential Guide

This Essential Guide is a collection of articles, videos and other content selected by our editors to give you a comprehensive view of this topic.

OpenStack tutorial: A guide for cloud providers

With the hype surrounding OpenStack, it's hard for cloud providers to make sense of it all. We'll help you find out how to take advantage of OpenStack's potential, explore alternatives and best the competition.

There's no shortage of hype around OpenStack, and not all of it is unfounded. Large cloud providers such as Rackspace have launched OpenStack-based services, and the open source project has major backing from a slew of big-name vendors and service providers. Yet while the cloud-building platform's stability and feature set have improved with each release, many providers are still reticent to roll it out in a production environment. This OpenStack tutorial will explore the readiness of OpenStack to build a cloud services environment, how viable of an alternative it is to other platforms and what its Quantum networking component can offer cloud providers.

Background

1. Evaluating OpenStack for your cloud services environment

One of OpenStack's big selling points is its potential to help cloud providers -- and their customers -- avoid vendor lock-in. But as an emerging platform, it still has many areas in need of further development. In this section of our OpenStack tutorial, find out how you can determine whether OpenStack is the right foundation for your cloud services, how its networking capabilities are being improved and how it stacks up against proprietary platforms.

  • A skeptical look at OpenStack architecture

    In this tip, learn how Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) platform could challenge OpenStack's viability, how DevOps may level the playing field and whether a common platform can become a differentiator.

    Tip

  • What can OpenStack Quantum do for cloud providers?

    OpenStack Quantum is a Networking as a Service project that intends to foster automation and increase adaptability using layered application programming interfaces (APIs). In this feature, you will learn more about the different layers of APIs in Quantum, how it's being used in the industry, as well as how Quantum can offer providers extended control over their networks.

    Feature

  • Martin Casado on OpenStack Quantum and cloud networking

    Virtual networking guru and Nicira co-founder Martin Casado discusses the implications of Quantum in this Q&A, along with what's in store for the future of cloud networking orchestration.

    News

  • Platform choices: Open source or proprietary cloud

    Open source projects are always evolving, potentially making it difficult to keep up if a provider is less familiar with the technology. But if a provider wants the best of both worlds, there is a third option: to wait for hybrid approaches to emerge in order to reap the benefits -- and avoid the pitfalls -- of both initiatives. Learn how in this article.

    News

OpenStack vs. CloudStack

2. Two open source cloud initiatives, lots of decisions

OpenStack and CloudStack share some similarities, so it can be hard to know which open source cloud platform to adopt. The two may be perceived rivals, but it is possible for providers to take advantage of both.

  • CloudStack: A rival to OpenStack?

    Did Citrix desert OpenStack? The industry's rumor mill went wild over claims that this was the case after the vendor gave its once proprietary CloudStack platform to the Apache Software Foundation. In this story, find out if Citrix is really abandoning the platform.

    News

  • OpenStack vs. CloudStack: A comparison

    Although OpenStack and CloudStack have a wide range of similarities, these initiatives are not the same. As both initiatives continue to grow and change, it's important to understand the ever-evolving history, goals and network support capabilities of each.

    Expert Tip

  • Comparing OpenStack and CloudStack vendors

    CloudStack and OpenStack are the two chief options in the open source cloud space, meaning administrators need to determine whether it is best to deploy just one platform, use both but make one dominant, or support both in an equal manner. This tip can help you make this tough call.

    Expert Tip

OpenStack in action

3. How cloud providers are using OpenStack

Whether providers choose to offer OpenStack-based cloud services or incorporate the technology into newly acquired assets, OpenStack is changing how cloud providers do business. In this section of our OpenStack tutorial, find examples of how major providers such as Rackspace, IBM and HP are using OpenStack today.

  • Rackspace OpenStack supports hybrid cloud model

    After being a driving force behind the development of OpenStack for years, Rackspace began offer OpenStack-based cloud services in 2012 -- a move that has far-reaching implications. Find out what this means for the industry in this story.

    News

  • IBM to meld CloudStack-based SoftLayer with OpenStack

    After OpenStack supporter IBM announced its intention to acquire SoftLayer, an IaaS provider that built its environment on CloudStack, the market was left wondering about the implications for both providers' platform choices. Stop wondering and start learning all about what this means in this story.

    News

  • HP lays out its cloud computing strategy

    At the OpenStack Summit in April 2012, HP released details about its cloud strategy and insisted that it has every intention of becoming a bigwig in the cloud market. Read all about HP's big plans.

    News