Stacking up Open Clouds

Is OpenStack the future of Cloud Computing

Summary:Will OpenStack really dominate the cloud computing scene in the future?

Blog 7 - Is OpenStack the Future of Cloud Computing

Earlier in July, one of the biggest cloud computing trends to make headlines in recent years celebrated another milestone when it reached its fourth birthday.

OpenStack has grown and developed over the past four years, to the point where it is now garnering serious attention from IT executives and developers around the world. One region that is picking up its rate of OpenStack interest is the Asia-Pacific, which hosted the region’s first OpenStack Summit two years ago to much success.

At that event, China OpenStack User Group (COSUG) manager Hui Cheng estimated that the growing group had more than 2,500 members, making it possibly the largest user group outside of the U.S. COSUG's China micro-blogging site, Weibo, also shows more than 2,000 members currently following the group's foray into OpenStack.

While still a comparatively “young” technology, its potential is significant—one day, OpenStack may become a household name related to cloud computing.

Boasting many of the general benefits associated with open source cloud platforms while also featuring its own advantages, such as an extensive, global community of collaborative developers, there are several reasons why it is worth keeping an eye on OpenStack.

Flexibility and versatility

One of the greatest selling points of OpenStack is its incredible flexibility and versatility. Both of these are key benefits as businesses of all shapes and sizes recognize the benefits of cloud computing, positioning OpenStack as a compelling platform for many companies looking to make the most of this trend.

The relatively low costs involved significantly reduce the monetary barrier that can prevent many businesses from making growth-conducive investments. Meanwhile, the different modes and systems available through OpenStack - whether it is private or public cloud - means there is a use case for everyone, from startups to large multinational corporations.

Agility

Speed has long been the essence of business success and in our increasingly competitive global business environment, this is only likely to continue to grow in importance.

The transparent, practical nature of OpenStack means users can deploy their systems with ease and speed, no matter which type of cloud platform they are using, to stay abreast of the competition. Even with multiple clouds to manage simultaneously, solutions such as Red Hat CloudForms, an open hybrid cloud management product, help to maintain time-to-resolution speed and efficiency so you aren't bogged down by operational complexities.

A collaborative, open source environment

Perhaps the most obvious appeal of OpenStack is the open source nature of the platform, which gives users a level of customization that’s hard to match. Users can tweak and configure the system in the way that is most beneficial for their business.

In fact, it is this collaborative, community-oriented environment that will likely play the biggest role in OpenStack's future development. Virtually anyone can access the source code, modify it and share these developments with the wider world, potentially leading to an exponential growth curve as more and more users join in this trend.

In fact, it is this collaborative, community-oriented environment that will likely play the biggest role in OpenStack's future development. Virtually anyone can access the source code, modify it and share these developments with the wider world, potentially leading to an exponential growth curve as more and more users join in this trend.

With some of the top developers from across the globe constantly working together to modify and better the system, OpenStack is on track to improve further in the years ahead.

No lock-in

A common factor that has prevented many companies from fully exploring the benefits of cloud computing is fear of vendor lock-in. With traditional providers understandably eager to hold onto their customers, this perceived risk of being tied down to a contract was one of the main reasons stopping businesses jumping onto the cloud bandwagon.

With open source systems such as OpenStack, users have freedom without the fear of being locked in to one service and one set of hardware. This enables users to diversify their efforts and explore a fuller range of options, using the services and tools that work best for their unique business, and moving between different providers in a cost-effective manner.

Given such an array of operational advantages, it is hard to argue that OpenStack will not have at least a large role to play in the cloud computing world.

Topics: Open Source

About

Alan Ho is the Director of Program Marketing, APAC for Red Hat. He has over 15 years of experience in the technology industry and is responsible for integrated demand generation programs following a buyer’s journey model through close collaboration with various stakeholders. He firmly believes in work-life harmony, and has a passion for r... Full Bio

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