Open-source cloud Eucalyptus gets visual with 'toughened' version 3.2

Eucalyptus Systems' new Eucalyptus 3.2 cloud computing software includes new management and storage capabilities, and a new graphical user interface.
Written by Sam Shead, Contributor

Open-source cloud platform Eucalyptus Systems is rolling out its 3.2 release in December in a move that aims to provide admins with greater visibility into cloud operations and expand storage options.

The update is designed to give administrators greater control and management of cloud resources, through features such as a new graphical user interface that provides self-service capabilities, simplified cloud administration, and enhanced cloud usage reporting.

"We have broad AWS API support in our product: EC2 (Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud), S3 (Amazon Simple Storage Service), EBS (Amazon Elastic Block Store) and IAM (AWS Identity and Access Management). No new major AWS services were added in 3.2, but we made small improvements across the platform," Eucalyptus CEO Mårten Mickos told ZDNet in an email on Tuesday.

Eucalyptus partnered with Amazon Web Services in March this year to bring additional compatibility between AWS and on-premises IT facilities. "We work with Amazon on two fronts: technology collaboration to make sure that workloads can move between clouds, and joint go-to-market activities to serve customers who are looking for a hybrid cloud solution," said Mickos.

The deal allows Eucalyptus customers to switch workloads between their existing datacentres and AWS while using the same management tools and skills across both environments. As part of the agreement, AWS pledged to support Eucalyptus to extend compatibility with AWS APIs and customer use cases.

Mickos said that customers running an internal development and testing environment will benefit most from the new update.

"It's in response to requests from such customers that we developed the new user console,"  said Mickos. "Generally, the new 3.2 is toughened on the inside, and made more usable on the outside, thanks to the user console, easier installation, easier logging and reporting, among other things."

"The new 3.2 is toughened on the inside, and made more usable on the outside" — Mårten Mickos, Eucalyptus

As the complexity and scale of cloud projects continues to increase, datacentre administrators are turning to technologies that automate key datacentre processes, address performance issues, and report on cloud use. 

AppDynamics, Mosaik Solutions, Nokia Siemens Networks and others are examples of customers running workloads both on AWS and Eucalyptus.

Eucalyptus 3.2 provides customers with self-service provisioning of compute, network and storage resources. The user console enables people to perform self-service operations including the provisioning of instances, key pair and password creation, Elastic Block Store (EBS) volume and snapshot operations, image catalog listing and registration, user group operations and elastic IP operations.

Eucalyptus 3.2 also has a hardened node controller that lets the Eucalyptus cloud stay up and running even if the underlying Linux OS experiences performance issues. Along with this, it includes a more resilient version of the JBOD Storage Adapter, which was developed for a high proportion of Eucalyptus customers. It puts an overlay atop local storage that lets it adopt the appearance of Amazon Web Services EBS.


"The reliability, flexibility and control provided by Eucalyptus 3.2 sets the stage for us to more rapidly deploy and manage mission-critical development and test environments in a highly scalable and self-service manner," Thomas Morse, director of IT and software as a service (SaaS) operations at AppDynamics, said in a statement.

"At any given time, our load-test harness may handle up to 6,000 concurrent connections to 20 test applications across multiple groups and phases of development. Eucalyptus enables us to quickly provision cloud resources to meet these demands using the same ecosystem of tools we're already familiar with through our work with AWS [Amazon Web Services]."

The new capabilities build upon Eucalyptus 3.1, which allowed the open-source community to work with enterprises on the same platform to contribute, build, run and manage cloud development and deployments.

Eucalyptus 3.2 will be available in December, and users will be able download it here

According to The Register, it costs $2,500 per server per year to get a support contract for Eucalyptus clouds for a standard support contract on a two-socket x86 server. Those looking for a more substantial server performance or premium support will have to pay more.

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