Everyone needs cloud-savvy administrators, but there aren't enough to go around. Worse still, if someone does come to you and they say they know OpenStack like the back of their hand, how do you know they do? Or, flipping it around, if you're a smart system administrator who wants to pick up mad OpenStack cloud skills, how do you do that?
Fortunately, the answers to all these questions are finally coming.
First, Red Hat, the Linux powerhouse and OpenStack supporter is now offering a Red Hat Certificate of Expertise in Infrastructure-as-a-Service (RHCEI).
Iain Gray, Red Hat's global services vice president, stated that "Red Hat intends this certification to become as much of a gold standard for OpenStack professionals as Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA) and Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) are for Linux professionals."
To get this certification, you'll need to pass Red Hat's Certificate of Expertise in IaaS Exam (EX210). Not sure you can do it? Red Hat offers training for it in its new class for OpenStack administrators: Red Hat OpenStack Administration (CL210). Once done, you should be able to do the following:
- Install and configure Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform .
- Manage users, projects, flavors, and rules.
- Configure and manage images.
- Add compute nodes.
- Manage storage using Swift and Cinder.
If you're not wedded to Red Hat, other OpenStack certification will probably take a similar path. Each one will, of course, be based on its own primary operating system. You can see the future of these certifications forming at the new, non-vendor aligned OpenStack Training Marketplace.
Jonathan Bryce, executive director of the OpenStack Foundation, explained, "There is now a huge demand for OpenStack expertise, so what we want to do is to try and put in place some standards for OpenStack education and training."
At this point the Marketplace is just that, a marketplace for a variety of approved OpenStack training offerings. The current listing includes classes from, among others, The Linux Foundation, Rackspace, and, of course, Red Hat.
This is only a first step. In the next year and a half, the OpenStack Foundation will be working on a more organized series of classes. For now, what's being taught depends entirely on each vendor or organization.
Eventually, once the classes are squared away, Bryce said there will be "a baseline certification for OpenStack. This will be a set of standard tests to evaluate basic, core OpenStack knowledge."
In the meantime, there's also an independent, community-led attempt to create vendor-neutral OpenStack training materials and certification the OpenStack Associate. These are both very much works in progress.
Hopefully, all these efforts will quickly support educational and certification path for OpenStack employers and users. OpenStack is getting too big, too fast to leave implementations in the hands of people who are still figuring it out as they go along.