Click here to close now.


@CloudExpo Authors: Pat Romanski, Jayaram Krishnaswamy, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Peter Silva

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Linux Containers, Open Source Cloud, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing

@CloudExpo: Article

Rackspace Starts the Great OpenStack Migration

It's inching out with a production-ready OpenStack cloud based on Essex

Rackspace, which wants to be the "Linux of the cloud" mimicking the now billion-dollar-a-year Red Hat, said Monday that it's "drawing a line in the sand against cloud providers."

Everyone agrees it has Amazon, particularly, and VMware, to a certain extent, in mind. However, what'll probably end up happening is that Red Hat, which has a prominent part in the open source OpenStack project that Rackspace started, becomes the "Linux of the cloud" because it's got all the pieces, or thinks it does, but that's another story.

Anyway, Rackspace is inching out with a production-ready OpenStack cloud based on Essex, the fifth and best-yet release of the open source cloud platform put in train by Rackspace and NASA in the summer of 2010.

Rackspace CEO Louis Napier told a New York Times blog that he expects to have all his customers, by then perhaps 200,000 businesses, on some or all of an OpenStack system by summer.

The fight is supposed to come down to a duel between the proprietary Amazon APIs, now lauded as the de facto standard of public clouds, and the still immature but open source CloudStack APIs.

Rackspace says come May 1, in roughly two weeks time, it will begin providing customers with default access to widgetry that it's now got in "limited availability."

That includes:

  • Cloud Servers, the Essex-based EC2-like compute piece of OpenStack, a k a Nova, accessible through the new programmable OpenStack API for switching between OpenStack clouds or a new intuitive control panel.
  • A built-from-the-ground-up graphical Control Panel that allows server tagging to discriminate between production and development servers so they can be controlled in concert and has multi-region capabilities.

Rackspace says "limited availability" means customers can sign up now, the widgetry is reportedly production workload-ready, there are unspecified SLAs, 24x7 support and regular billing. It seems it could take Rackspace a few months to ensure a smooth ramp-up but the move is supposed to be imperceptible.

Rackspace, which has already got the S3-like Cloud Files storage, a k a Swift, will move all of its public, private and hybrid cloud to this widgetry.

It's also got stuff in "early access" defined as "production workload-ready but with limited support available, no service commitments and no billing.

They include:

  • OpenStack Cloud Databases (Project Red Dwarf) with API access to a massively scalable, highly available MySQL database with redundant SAN storage for high performance and automated management. Figure on Microsoft SQL Server and other databases too but maybe not from Rackspace. Amazon, of course, has the MySQL-derived Relational Data Service (RDS).
  • Single-view Cloud Monitoring of the infrastructure and applications based on Rackspace's acquisition of Cloudkick.

Lastly it's got early versions of products in "preview" looking for testers namely:

  • OpenStack Cloud Block Storage, like Amazon's Elastic Block Storage (EBS), but offering either solid state or lower-cost disk storage.
  • Cloud Networks, software-defined virtual networks for managing logically abstracted network services programmatically. IDC says Rackspace's Cloud Networks is "going to eliminate some of the hesitation businesses have around cloud adoption." Thank you Cisco et al.

Here's what it all looks like:

Rudimentary pricing will remain the same starting at $0.015 cents an hour for a Linux virtual server with 10GB of disk space and 256MB of RAM and $0.08 an hour for Windows.

Rackspace still has to say what the database, storage and networking will ultimately run.

HP, a chief OpenStack acolyte, won't have a beta take on the Essex platform memorialized in its HP Cloud Services until May 10 with no estimates, as of last week, on when it could have a production public cloud.

There will be OpenStack fragmentation, observers prophecy. HP won't return all the distinguishing tweaks it makes to the community.

Rackspace says on its web site that it's got more than 170,000 businesses and 60% of the Fortune 100 as customers.


More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at) or paperboy(at), and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@CloudExpo Stories
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, Chief Architect at CTS, will explore the synergy of Big Data and IoT. First he will take a closer look at the Internet of Things and Big Data individually, in terms of what, which, why, where, when, who, how and how much. Then he will explore the relationship between IoT and Big Data. Specifically, he will drill down to how the 4Vs aspects intersect with IoT: Volume, Variety, Velocity and Value. In turn, Tony will analyze how the key components of IoT ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that G2G3 will exhibit at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit Silicon Valley, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Based on a collective appreciation for user experience, design, and technology, G2G3 is uniquely qualified and motivated to redefine how organizations and people engage in an increasingly digital world.
When it comes to IoT in the enterprise, namely the commercial building and hospitality markets, a benefit not getting the attention it deserves is energy efficiency, and IoT’s direct impact on a cleaner, greener environment when installed in smart buildings. Until now clean technology was offered piecemeal and led with point solutions that require significant systems integration to orchestrate and deploy. There didn't exist a 'top down' approach that can manage and monitor the way a Smart Buildi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Raxak has been named “Media & Session Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Raxak Protect automates security compliance across private and public clouds. Using the SaaS tool or managed service, developers can deploy cloud apps quickly, cost-effectively, and without error.
As-a-service models offer huge opportunities, but also complicate security. It may seem that the easiest way to migrate to a new architectural model is to let others, experts in their field, do the work. This has given rise to many as-a-service models throughout the industry and across the entire technology stack, from software to infrastructure. While this has unlocked huge opportunities to accelerate the deployment of new capabilities or increase economic efficiencies within an organization, i...
“All our customers are looking at the cloud ecosystem as an important part of their overall product strategy. Some see it evolve as a multi-cloud / hybrid cloud strategy, while others are embracing all forms of cloud offerings like PaaS, IaaS and SaaS in their solutions,” noted Suhas Joshi, Vice President – Technology, at Harbinger Group, in this exclusive Q&A with Cloud Expo Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff.
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the...
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Clearly the way forward is to move to cloud be it bare metal, VMs or containers. One aspect of the current public clouds that is slowing this cloud migration is cloud lock-in. Every cloud vendor is trying to make it very difficult to move out once a customer has chosen their cloud. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Naveen Nimmu, CEO of Clouber, Inc., will advocate that making the inter-cloud migration as simple as changing airlines would help the entire industry to quickly adopt the cloud wit...
As the world moves towards more DevOps and microservices, application deployment to the cloud ought to become a lot simpler. The microservices architecture, which is the basis of many new age distributed systems such as OpenStack, NetFlix and so on, is at the heart of Cloud Foundry - a complete developer-oriented Platform as a Service (PaaS) that is IaaS agnostic and supports vCloud, OpenStack and AWS. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Raghavan "Rags" Srinivas, an Architect/Developer Evangeli...
SYS-CON Events announced today that VividCortex, the monitoring solution for the modern data system, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The database is the heart of most applications, but it’s also the part that’s hardest to scale, monitor, and optimize even as it’s growing 50% year over year. VividCortex is the first unified suite of database monitoring tools specifically desi...
Organizations already struggle with the simple collection of data resulting from the proliferation of IoT, lacking the right infrastructure to manage it. They can't only rely on the cloud to collect and utilize this data because many applications still require dedicated infrastructure for security, redundancy, performance, etc. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Emil Sayegh, CEO of Codero Hosting, will discuss how in order to resolve the inherent issues, companies need to combine dedicated a...
Cloud computing delivers on-demand resources that provide businesses with flexibility and cost-savings. The challenge in moving workloads to the cloud has been the cost and complexity of ensuring the initial and ongoing security and regulatory (PCI, HIPAA, FFIEC) compliance across private and public clouds. Manual security compliance is slow, prone to human error, and represents over 50% of the cost of managing cloud applications. Determining how to automate cloud security compliance is critical...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership ab...
Learn how Backup as a Service can help your customer base protect their data. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Stefaan Vervaet, Director of Strategic Alliances at HGST, will discuss the challenges of data protection in an era of exploding storage requirements, show you the benefits of a backup service for your cloud customers, and explain how the HGST Active Archive and CommVault are already enabling this service today with customer examples.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Key Information Systems, Inc. (KeyInfo), a leading cloud and infrastructure provider offering integrated solutions to enterprises, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Key Information Systems is a leading regional systems integrator with world-class compute, storage and networking solutions and professional services for the most advanced softwa...
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate at IBM Cloud Data Services, will demonstrate techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, ...
As more and more data is generated from a variety of connected devices, the need to get insights from this data and predict future behavior and trends is increasingly essential for businesses. Real-time stream processing is needed in a variety of different industries such as Manufacturing, Oil and Gas, Automobile, Finance, Online Retail, Smart Grids, and Healthcare. Azure Stream Analytics is a fully managed distributed stream computation service that provides low latency, scalable processing of ...
Cloud Foundry open Platform as a Service makes it easy to operate, scale and deploy application for your dedicated cloud environments. It enables developers and operators to be significantly more agile, writing great applications and deliver them in days instead of months. Cloud Foundry takes care of all the infrastructure and network plumbing that you need to build, run and operate your applications and can do this while patching and updating systems and services without any downtime.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interface Masters Technologies, provider of leading network visibility and monitoring solutions, will exhibit at the 17th International CloudExpo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Interface Masters Technologies is a leading provider of high speed networking solutions focused on Gigabit, 10 Gigabit, 40 Gigabit and 100 Gigabit Ethernet network access and connectivity products. For over 20 ye...