Sticking to a Vision

By Marten Mickos | May 29, 2013

Implementing a computing cloud using your local resources. Open source. Interface-compatible with the leading public cloud. Installation as a one-button activity.

You will find those words in the famous email below from exactly five years ago when Eucalyptus 1.0 was announced and released. Eucalyptus continues to stick to the same vision.

In 2008, Eucalyptus was the most modern on-premise cloud platform you could find. And, arguably, it’s still true today. Only Eucalyptus offers true AWS compatibility. Only Eucalyptus can run Netflix’s ChaosMonkey – a hallmark of cloud design. Only Eucalyptus takes you squarely out of “virtualized datacenter management” into the modern world of on-premise cloud. Only Eucalyptus is a mature turnkey solution built from open source components.

To Rich Wolski, Chris Grzegorczyk, Dan Nurmi, Graziano Obertelli, Neil Soman, and Dmitrii Zagorodnov – thank you for your foresight, innovation and determination! What your curious minds envisioned over five years ago is today powering highly efficient private clouds at countless organizations: AppDynamics, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Cornell University, EvntLive, the European Space Agency, Indiana University, Infosys, Inmar, MemSQL, Mosaik Solutions, NASA, NIST, Nokia Siemens Networks, One Health, Rafter, Riot Entertainment, Tieto, Ultimate Gaming, just to name a few.

Thank you, Computer Science Department of the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), for providing a world-leading research environment that also values the impact this research has on the industry, particularly in the area of distributed systems. Santa Barbara has become Silicon Beach, a sunny place with amazing people and lots of clouds — compute clouds. Think of AppScale, Ansible, RightScale, AppFolio and others.

Thank you, community of users, contributors, partners and customers for working with us on fulfilling the vision of the power of cloud on your own servers.

We are the proud producers of an Elastic Utility Computing Architecture Linking Your Programs To Useful Systems, and we celebrate our fifth anniversary by putting the final touches on release 3.3.0 and then taking off on a company retreat for a couple of days.

Mårten Mickos

P.S. Here is the email from 5 years ago:

From: EUCALYPTUS general mailing list  
Date: May 29, 2008 7:30:00 PM PDT  
To: eucalyptus-general@pompone.cs.ucsb.edu  
Subject: [Eucalyptus-general] Eucalyptus 1.0 now available for download  
Reply-To: eucalyptus-general@pompone.cs.ucsb.edu  

Greetings All,

After several long evenings and a full 24 hours worth of testing (that the software was able to pass, anyway) we are pleased to announce that Eucalyptus 1.0 is now available for download from the web site  

http://eucalyptus.cs.ucsb.edu

If this is the first you've heard of it, Eucalyptus is an open-source system we have been developing for implementing a computing cloud using your local cluster resources.  It uses standard Linux and open-source web services tools and it is interface-compatible with Amazon's EC2 (you access Eucalyptus using the EC2 command-line tools downloaded from Amazon directly).

If this is not your first exposure to the project, thanks so much to everyone for your continued interest.  The feedback we have been receiving so far, even before making the software available has been both extremely helpful and, at times, quite inspirational.  Please don't be shy about continuing to tell us what you think.

And now for a couple of notes on the release...

The software is probably somewhere between an alpha quality and a beta quality release meaning that there are issues we know about, but we are tracking and fixing them and none of the ones on our current list are catastrophic.  We expect that this happy circumstance will change rapidly as the user community increases.   Thus, we are hoping that release Version 1.0 in a non-production quality form will help us shake out the design, prioritize future development, expose weaknesses in the architecture we have chosen, and ultimately stimulate interest and research in cloud computing.

Perhaps the biggest usage caveat regards our decision to use Rocks (http://www.rocksclusters.org) as an initial deployment tool. If you are not familiar with Rocks, it is a powerful, RPM based system for automatically configuring and "booting" Linux clusters (as opposed to individual Linux machines).  While the Eucalyptus software itself is fairly straight forward, getting all of the right pieces in the right places, especially given site-specific cluster configuration choices can be tedious and error prone.  Rocks is designed to handle these kinds configuration requirements (including sequencing) with relative ease.  It runs a collection of set-up scripts (that we have written for Eucalyptus) in the right order to generate and install the necessary configuration files and to stand up the Eucalyptus services.  We are working on stand-alone versions of these scripts, but we opted for the convenience of Rocks over an extensive shell programming exercise in order to be able to make the system available as soon as possible.  The good news is that with Rocks, installing and launch Eucalyptus is essentially a "one-button" activity.

And there is full documentation for a Rocks installation as well as a user's guide and more detailed caveats available from the home page.

Over the next several weeks we are planning minor releases of Eucalyptus 1.0 to fix bugs, enhance the internal security implementation, roll out a stand-alone installation procedure and possibly to provide additional pre-packaged SLAs (the current set we are shipping are very simple).   If there is something you'd like to see or a particularly egregious bug  that is blocking your progress please let us know via the discussion board or mailing lists accessible from the Eucalyptus home page.

We are also in the planning stages for a major release that will be backward compatible with 1.0, but that will also include additional functionality such as limited S3 emulation.  Again, we welcome your feedback and suggestions on "big" changes we might try and make starting with version 2.0.

Once again, we thank those of you who have been kind enough to help us during the design and initial implementation phase of the project and we look forward to working with many of you in the future to improve it.  And, of course, a very special thanks is due to the VGrADS project (http://vgrads.rice.edu) for providing the initial impetus for this effort.

The Eucalyptus Team  
Computer Science Department  
University of California, Santa Barbara  

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