Mirantis enters the Kubernetes game and ups its OpenStack play

Besides managing OpenStack clouds, Mirantis is adding cloud container management to its skillset with Kubernetes.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

Mirantis' business is to make it easy on you to run and manage OpenStack clouds. They're still doing that, but they're also making managing containers on clouds easier by adopting Kubernetes.

Mirantis Cloud Platform

Mirantis Cloud Platform combines OpenStack with Kubernetes for a complete cloud and container management platform.

The Sunnyvale, Calif. company is doing this by launching a new single integrated distribution of OpenStack and Kubernetes: Mirantis Cloud Platform (MCP) 1.0. This new release also offers a unique build-operate-transfer delivery model.

Boris Renski, Mirantis co-founder, explained, "Today, infrastructure consumption patterns are defined by the public cloud, where everything is API driven, managed, and continuously delivered. Mirantis OpenStack, which featured Fuel as an installer, was the easiest OpenStack distribution to deploy, but every new version required a forklift upgrade."

This, as anyone who's upgraded OpenStack from one major version to another knows, is all too true.

Mirantis addresses this, Renski explained, by departing "from the traditional installer-centric architecture and towards an operations-centric architecture, continuously delivered by either Mirantis or the customers' DevOps team with zero downtime. Updates no longer happen once every 6-12 months, but are introduced in minor increments on a weekly basis. In the next five to 10 years, all vendors in the space will either find a way to adapt to this pattern or they will disappear."

Those are bold words, but Renski isn't the only one blowing Mirantis' horn.

Lisa Davis, Intel's Data Center Group VP and general manager of Enterprise & Government IT Modernization, revealed that "over the last two years, Intel has worked closely with Mirantis to optimize OpenStack to meet the requirements of large enterprise and comms service providers' environments. Examples of our joint work include improved network, storage, and high-availability capabilities as well as Kubernetes enhancements. Customers will now be able to take advantage of these optimizations with this release of the Mirantis Cloud Platform."

In a statement, OpenStack's COO Mark Collier added, "As the industry embraces composable, open infrastructure, the 'LAMP stack of cloud' is emerging, made up of OpenStack, Kubernetes, and other key open technologies. Mirantis Cloud Platform presents a new vision for the OpenStack distribution, one that embraces diverse compute, storage and networking technologies continuously rather than via major upgrades on six-month cycles."

MCP features:

OpenStack will provide a single platform to orchestrate VMs, containers and bare metal compute resources by:

  • Including Kubernetes for container orchestration.
  • Complementing the virtual compute stacks with best-in-class open source software defined networking (SDN), specifically Mirantis OpenContrail software-defined networking (SDN) for VMs and bare metal, and Calico secure networking for containers.
  • For storage it uses Ceph, the popular open-source software defined storage (SDS).

Mirantis DriveTrainsets the foundation for DevOps-style lifecycle management of the open-cloud software stack by enabling continuous integration, continuous testing, and continuous delivery through a CI/CD pipeline. DriveTrain enables:

  • Increased Day 1 flexibility to customize the reference architecture and configurations during initial software installation.
  • Greater ability to perform Day 2 operations such as post-deployment configuration, functionality, and architecture changes.
  • Seamless version updates through an automated pipeline to a virtualized control plane to minimize downtime.

Finally,StackLight provides continuous monitoring of the cloud software stack. This in turn makes it easier to ensure customers get the the quality of service their service level agreements (SLAs) promise. The Mirantis StackLight toolchain is purpose-built for MCP to enable up to 99.99 percent uptime service level agreements with Mirantis Managed OpenStack.

StackLight avoids vendor lock-in by including best-in-breed, open-source software for log management, metrics, and alerts. It also includes a comprehensive DevOps portal that displays information such as StackLight visualization and DriveTrain configuration settings.

Mirantis is betting the farm on this new model of delivering cloud services. With the release of MCP, the company is also announcing end-of-life for Mirantis OpenStack and Fuel by September 2019. Mirantis will be working with OpenStack customers with a tailored transition plan from MOS to MCP.

Want to know more? You can watch an overview video and sign up for the introductory webinar.

Me? I'm certainly interested. The distribution model of OpenStack works well enough, but no one can pretend that even if you stick with the same vendor that it's easy to upgrade from one major OpenStack release to another. Mirantis' MCP course sounds like it could be just what corporate cloud customers want.

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