Rackspace Partners for Open-Source Cloud Platform

By Doug Allen Comments
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Rackspace Hosting has introduced OpenStack, the first cloud platform of its type based on open-source code. Designed to encourage cloud interoperability standards, the company is contributing its Cloud Files and Servers code for the public cloud to a multi-partner effort that also includes the NASA Nebula Cloud Platform. The two plan to co-develop cloud solutions based on third-party software developers.

“Modern scientific computation requires ever-increasing storage and processing power delivered on-demand,” said Chris C. Kemp, NASA’s Chief Technology Officer for IT. “To serve this demand, we built Nebula, an infrastructure cloud platform designed to meet the needs of our scientific and engineering community. NASA and Rackspace are uniquely positioned to drive this initiatiave based on our experience in building large scale cloud platforms and our desire to embrace open source.”

OpenStack is actually a collection of cloud infrastructure components, based on a fully distributed object store of the company’s Cloud Files, currently available at OpenStack.org. The next release, slated for later this year, will be a scalable compute-provisioning engine that combines technology from both the NASA Nebula cloud and Rackspace Cloud Servers. Once available, developers will have access to market-tested code enabling scalable and extensive cloud environments, which should drive innovation in both public and private cloud technologies.

More importantly, the two are actively seeking buy-in from other cloud vendors for both the enterprise and carrier markets. Rackspace hosted an OpenStack Design Summit last week in Austin, Texas, gathering more than 100 technical advisors, developers and founding members to validate the code used and give official approval to the project roadmap. Attendees included AMD, Autonomic Resources, Citrix, Cloud.com, Cloudkick, Cloudscaling, CloudSwitch, Dell, enStratus, FathomDB, Intel, iomart Group, Limelight, Nicira, NTT DATA, Opscode, PEER 1, Puppet Labs, RightScale, Riptano, Scalr, SoftLayer, Sonian, Spiceworks, Zenoss and Zuora.

“OpenStack provides a solid foundation for promoting the emergence of cloud standards and interoperability,” said peter Levine, senior vice president and general manager, Datacenter and cloud Division at Citrix Systems.  “As a longtime technology partner with Rackspace, Citrix will collaborate closely with the community to provide full support for the XenServer platform and our other cloud-enabling products.”

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