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July 15, 2014

OpenStack: A Winning Proposition for Vendors and End-Users

By TMCnet Special Guest
Yarob Sakhnini, Regional Director MEMA at Brocade

Founded by Rackspace (News - Alert) Hosting and NASA, OpenStack has grown to be a global software community of developers collaborating on a standard and massively scalable open source cloud operating platform for public and private clouds.

In the Middle East cloud computing has begun to see an uptake due to its obvious benefits - from scalability and increased efficiencies to cost savings and efficient resource deployment. However there are challenges, such as the need to control and re-configure this hyper-dynamic environment as application workloads move in, out, and around the networking infrastructure. This is where cloud orchestration solutions play a role in getting the infrastructure, middleware, applications, and services to behave in a coordinated fashion. Proprietary orchestration solutions can lead to vendor lock-in, reducing flexibility and often inhibiting the network’s ability to scale as business needs evolve. In fact, these solutions can limit an organization’s ability to achieve the very benefits the cloud offers.

An open solution, such as OpenStack, allows end-users to gain all the benefits of cloud while also guaranteeing the flexibility they need to drive innovation and growth. It has also opened up a new world in networking, enabling IT to orchestrate network resources in the same way as would orchestrate virtual machines.

From a vendor’s perspective, OpenStack is a key factor in promoting multivendor and system-to-system interoperability for cloud environments. By choosing to work together to ensure that different vendor technologies are interoperable, clients can choose OpenStack components based on merit rather than being locked-in to a single vendor. And collaboration is essential in making solutions from different vendors work together seamlessly as a reliable and robust solution. This is essential to creating a healthy, competitive marketplace and so it is important that vendors are fully committed to making OpenStack a key part of their cloud architecture strategies.

CIOs are always under pressure to adapt to the needs of the wider organization and, as the role of cloud – either public or private – grows, the need to transition between cloud services without being locked-in or having to manage a complex transfer process will be a powerful argument for open standards such as OpenStack.  

OpenStack adoption will increase rapidly in the coming months and years. It has become the de facto open source standard for cloud computing, with more than 15,000 members in 136 countries already.

The reason for this is simple; as more applications migrate to the cloud, the ability to move data from one cloud solution to another will become increasingly vital. Open cloud standards make it easy to transfer workloads from one cloud service to another. Conversely, a lack of open standards can make it incredibly difficult to transfer workloads to another cloud. As cloud matures and organizations gain more experience of these situations, open standards will become an increasingly important part of any purchasing decision for IT teams, helping to drive further adoption of OpenStack.

About the author: Mr. Sakhnini is regional director, MEMA at Brocade (News - Alert). He is a networking industry veteran with over 21 years of experience in various senior technical management roles including his last position as director, systems engineering, MEMA at Brocade.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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