Cloud News Recap: May 13, 2014

By Colby Dyess | May 13, 2014

The past week was a big one for Eucalyptus and, by extension, scalable private and hybrid cloud computing environments. We announced the upcoming release of Eucalyptus 4.0, with a variety of new features that address the common pain points our customers have seen as their deployments grow and change to meet new requirements. Eucalyptus has long been a vital tool for dev/test teams, but recently it has become an increasingly important tool for managing initiatives such as data analytics projects, too.

Eucalyptus 4.0 builds upon the AWS API compatibility that has long made it the ideal choice for organizations that need to leverage both the control of private cloud and the scalability of public cloud. On top of that, it offers key updates to the user console, load balancing and scale-out storage, to name just a few features. To kick off this week, we'll take a look at the reception of Eucalyptus 4.0, as well as some of the industry-wide trends in enterprise cloud and open source software development.

Eucalyptus 4.0 Responds to Customer Feedback with Many Private Cloud Enhancements

We included many new features for security, scalability and AWS API compatibility in Eucalyptus 4.0. Data Center Knowledge's Jason Verge had a great rundown of some of the most notable changes, including:

  • Scale-out storage support for open source and commercial solutions that implement the S3 interface
  • Easier deployment of Eucalyptus atop existing network topologies
  • The ability to change cloud configurations without reinstalling
  • Support for security groups, allowing consistent application of resource policies across environments
  • Load balancing across multiple machines for higher availability
  • Enhancements to the user console for desktop and mobile devices

These changes and many others make Eucalyptus an increasingly versatile solution, capable of handling workflows that require high scalability and performance.

"[W]e're seeing more data analytics: they have a massive data set and want to run jobs on Eucalyptus," stated Eucalyptus vice president Tim Zeller. "We've had some early adopters here but we're seeing more people coming to the forefront. There's existing customers that have started small to medium in size, but the growth that they're seeing internally for the service has grown immensely."

Eucalyptus CEO Marten Mickos went in depth about the changes and the philosophy behind them in a blog post. He talked in particular about the introduction of the Object Storage Gateway and Edge Networking.

What Do Enterprises Expect From Cloud Computing Solutions?

IT spending is shifting rapidly to cloud computing solutions. Gartner estimated that the cloud will account for the majority of new IT procurements by 2016.

Not only that, but hybrid cloud is becoming the center of many IT departments' plans for the future. Many organizations already have something like a hybrid cloud in place as they seek to access resources more quickly while also retaining key data on-premises. Going forward, stakeholders may seek to streamline management of their hybrid environments to increase control and visibility.

Writing for TheNextWeb, Virtustream senior vice president Sean Jennings looked at what cloud service providers need to know when selling to enterprises, including the importance of performance and hybrid cloud services. Jennings also examined some of the considerations to make when acquiring another company (or being acquired), arguing that acquisitions should be targeted toward serving a specific customer base rather than trying to cater to everyone.

Implementing Continuous Integration Through Open Source Software

A little while ago, Promet Source's Jay Uhlinger assessed the value of implementing continuous integration for Web CMS projects. This past week, I looked at Uhlinger's post and added some thoughts on open source software's role in enabling effective CI. Eucalyptus's strong community and rapidly growing set of capabilities makes it an excellent fit for teams that are setting up CI to streamline testing and deployment.

New "Controlling Cloud Costs" White Paper from Eucalyptus

Reducing costs while simultaneously improving IT efficiency is one of the core reasons for shifting more resources and infrastructure to the cloud. However, many organizations may be falling short of their savings goals, either because they are overly reliant on public cloud or they are spending too much time wrangling with traditional private cloud.

Our new "Controlling Cloud Costs" white paper examines in depth why cost is a common stumbling block for organizations trying to get the benefits of cloud computing. It looks at how Eucalyptus enables companies to get the best of both worlds in the cloud by tapping into AWS via deep API compatibility and maintaining granular control over internal systems.

Linkgard Uses Eucalyptus to Streamline Testing

Eucalyptus customers have for years used our products to enhance their dev/test environments and achieve substantial savings and competitive advantages. We've done a number of case studies on how Eucalyptus has benefited our users, including Linkgard.

This week we published a blog post that provides a quick overview of how Linkgard streamlined its operations via Eucalyptus. Take a look if you're interested in how Eucalyptus works but haven't had time to dig into the longer case studies.

How has Heartbleed Changed the Economics of Open Source Software Development?

Open source software provides numerous advantages over proprietary equivalents, including better economics, higher quality and superior security as a result of community oversight. However, the recent discovery of the Heartbleed flaw in the widely used OpenSSL cryptographic library seems to have cast doubt on the safety of open source projects.

Dr. Dobb's editor-in-chief Andrew Binstock reframed the issue as a monetary, rather than technical, matter. Essentially, open source initiatives such as OpenSSL are caught in a bind between inviting community engagement and deriving sustainable revenue, and licenses are at the center of their struggle.

"My concern is that if this view becomes widespread and copyleft licenses are heavily disfavored, the fundamental nature of open source will change. Small teams of innovators, à la OpenSSL, will no longer be able to create value and be sustained by skill and innovation. And so, one of the most important feeder streams to the open-source ecosystem will disappear - a victim of corporate users' unreasonable refusal to help pay to support projects from which they derive substantial revenue."

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