A blog for the enterprise open source community
Linux and open source no puff in the cloudsJay Lyman, March 18, 2009 @ 11:40 am ET
UPDATED – I had to update this post after a conversation with RightScale founder and CTO Thorsten von Eicken and for Sun’s Open Cloud announcement, which are both now included below.
There has been some substantial technology and news regarding open source software in cloud computing lately. More proof that open source is reaching into nearly all aspects of enterprise and broader IT, and also reinforcement of the idea that open source software will continue to have a pervasive and disruptive impact on the way organizations of all shapes and sizes do their computing and deal with their data.
First up is RightScale, which as detailed by 451 colleague and Principal Analyst William Fellows, is up and running across the pond on Amazon’s EU EC2. As WiF reports, RightScale started with Red Hat Linux clone CentOS, but is seeing demand and traction among its users with Canonical’s Ubuntu Linux, which it recently began supporting in full. Our report also highlights Ubuntu packaging and integrated AWS-compatible Eucalyptus APIs. For its part, RightScale says its cloud infrastructure now includes cloud-ready ServerTemplates for Ubuntu — pre-built templates for common cloud configurations.
In my recent conversation with RightScale founder and CTO Thorsten von Eicken, he indicated as ISVs and others contemplate how to publish, sell, support and monetize applications in the cloud, they can benefit from the lessons and advantages of open source software. von Eicken and I agree that open source represents a different usage and payment model that is more conducive to cloud computing than traditional software licensing and payment models.
Next up is my own coverage of Cittio and its initiation of Project Zeppelin to create a standard, open agent and open source instrumentation for cloud monitoring. One of the most interesting aspects of Zeppelin is its intent to provide a standard way to compare clouds — both public ones from Amazon and others and internal deployments — and match applications to infrastructure by looking at discovery, monitoring, evaluation and auditing data. Monitoring of the clouds is also a place we see Hyperic, the most cloud-centric of the systems management and monitoring vendors centered on open source.
We’re also hearing a lot about the Apache Hadoop Project, most notably the new commercial play around it – Cloudera (covered recently in Matt’s latest CAOS Links and late last year in a blog). With Hadoop in use at places such as Facebook, Google and Yahoo! and recent $5m in funding from Accel Partners and others, the company certainly has some opportunity that is not pie in the sky. Indeed, Hadoop, which is also a focus for Cittio, and Cloudera are all further evidence of how real open source software is for cloud computing.
Although it may be getting lost in the noise around the potential IBM-Sun acquisition rumors, Sun Microsystems made a significant cloud announcement involving open source, as well. With its release of the Sun Cloud aimed at ‘developers, students and startups,’ Sun is relying on several open source components such as Java, MySQL, OpenSolaris and Open Storage.
So while many Linux and open source fans and followers have, unfortunately, grown used to hearing about Linux in this or open source in that when it turns out to be just for the buzz and attention created by those key words, Linux and open source in the clouds is more than mere mist.
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