Archive

Archive for the ‘Cloud Computing’ Category

Renewing Focus on Bringing OpenStack to the Masses

October 17, 2016 Leave a comment

.

This is a duplicate of a blog I authored for SUSE, originally published at the SUSE Blog Site.

Happy Newton Release Week!

This 14th release of OpenStack is one we’ve all been anticipating, with its focus on scalability, resiliency, and overall user experience – important aspects that really matter to enterprise IT organizations, and that help with broader adoption of OpenStack with those users.

(More on that later.)

Six years of Community, Collaboration, and Growth

I was fortunate enough to have been at the very first OpenStack “meeting of the minds” at the Omni hotel in Austin, back in 2010, when just the IDEA of OpenStack was in preliminary discussions. Just a room full of regular everyday people, across numerous industries, who saw the need for a radical new open source cloud platform, and had a passion to make something happen.

And over the years, we’ve seen progress: the creation of the OpenStack Foundation, thousands of contributors to the project, scores of companies throwing their support and resources behind OpenStack, the first steps beyond North America to Europe and Asia (especially with all the OpenStack excitement in India, China, and Japan), numerous customers adopting our revolutionary cloud project, and on and on.

Power to the People

But this project is also about our people.

And we, as a community of individuals, have grown and evolved over the years as well – as have the developers, customers and end users we hope to serve with the project. What started out with a few visionary souls has now blossomed into a community of 62,000+ members from 629 supporting companies across 186 countries.

As a member of the community, I’ve seen positive growth in my own life since then as well.  I’ve been fortunate to have been part of some great companies – like Dell, HPE, and now SUSE.  And I’ve been able to help enterprise customers solve real problems with impactful open source solutions in big data, storage, HPC, and of course, cloud with OpenStack.

And there might have been one other minor area of self-transformation since those days as well, as the graphic illustrates… 🙂

JBG_BeforeAfter

Clearly we – the OpenStack project and the OpenStack people – are evolving for the better.

 

So Where Do We Go From Here?

In 2013, I was able to serve the community by being a Director on the OpenStack Foundation Board. Granted, things were still fairly new – new project ideas emerging, new companies wanting to sponsor, developers being added by the day, etc – but there was a personal focus I wanted to drive among our community.

“Bringing OpenStack to the masses.”

And today, my hope for the community remains the same.

While we celebrate all the progress we have made, here are some of my thoughts on what we, as a community, should continue to focus on to bring OpenStack to the masses.

Adoption with the Enterprise by Speaking their Language

Take a look at the most recent OpenStack User Survey. It provides a great snapshot into the areas that users need help.

  • “OpenStack is great to recommend, however there’s a fair amount of complexity that needs to be tackled if one wishes to use it.”
  • “OpenStack lacks far too many core components for anything other than very specialized deployments.”
  • “Technology is good, but no synergies between the sub-projects.”

2016 data suggests that enterprise customers are looking for these sorts of issues to be addressed, as well as security and management practices keeping pace with new features. And, with all the very visible security breaches in recent months, the enterprise is looking for open source projects to put more emphasis on security.  In fact, many of the customers I engage with love the idea of OpenStack, but still need help with these fundamental requirements they have to deal with.

Designing / Positioning OpenStack to Address Business Challenges

Have you ever wondered why so many tall office buildings have revolving doors? Isn’t a regular door simpler, less complex, and easier to use?  Why do we see so many revolving doors, when access can be achieved so much simpler with other means?

Because revolving doors don’t exist to solve access problems – they solve a heated-air loss problem.

When a door in a tall building is opened, cold air from outside forces it’s way inside when doors are open, pushing warmer / lighter air up – which is then lost through vents at the top of the building. Revolving doors limit that loss incredibly by sealing off portions of outside access when rotating.

Think of our project in the same way.OpenStackIndustries

  • What business challenges can be addressed today / near-term by implementing an OpenStack-based solution?
  • Beyond the customer set looking to build a hosted cloud to resell, what further applications can OpenStack be applied to?
  • How can OpenStack provide an industry-specific competitive advantage to the financial sector?  To healthcare?  To HPC?  To the energy sector?  How about retail or media?

Address the Cultural IT Changes that Need to Happen

I recently read a piece where Jonathan Bryce spoke to the “cultural IT changes that need to occur” – and I love that line of thinking.

Jonathan specifically said “What you do with Windows and Linux administrators is the bigger challenge for a lot of companies. Once you prove the technology, you need policies and training to push people.”

That is spot on.

What we are all working on with OpenStack will fundamentally shift how IT organizations will operate in the future. Let’s take the extra step, and provide guidance to our audiences on how they can evolve and adapt to the coming changes with training, tools, community support, and collaboration. A good example of this is the Certified OpenStack Administrator certification being offered by the Foundation, and training for the COA offered by the OpenStack partner ecosystem.

Further Champion the OpenStack Operator

Operators are on the front lines of implementing OpenStack, and “making things work.” There is no truer test of the validity of our OpenStack efforts than when more and more operators can easily and simply deploy / run / maintain OpenStack instances.

I am encouraged by the increased focus on documentation, connecting developers and operators more, and the growth of a community of operators sharing stories on what works best in practical implementation of OpenStack. And we will see this grow even more at the Operator Summit in Barcelona at OpenStack Summit (details here).

We are making progress here but there’s so much more we can do to better enable a key part of our OpenStack family – the operators.

The Future is Bright

Since we’re celebrating the Newton release, the quote from Isaac Newton on looking ahead is seems fitting…

“To myself I am only a child playing on the beach, while vast oceans of truth lie undiscovered before me.”

When it comes to where OpenStack is heading, I’m greatly optimistic.  As it has always been, it will not be easy.  But we are making a difference.

And with continued and increased focus on enterprise adoption, addressing business challenges, aiding in the cultural IT change, and an increased focus on the operator, we can go to the next level.

We can bring OpenStack to the masses.

See you in Barcelona in a few weeks.

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

 

Advertisements

Tech in Real Life: Content Delivery Networks, Big Data Servers and Object Storage

April 6, 2015 Leave a comment

.

This is a duplicate of a blog I authored for HP, originally published at hp.nu/Lg3KF.

In a joint blog authored with theCube’s John Furrier and Scality’s Leo Leung, we pointed out some of the unique characteristics of data that make it act and look like a vector.

At that time, I promised we’d delve into specific customer uses for data and emerging data technologies – so let’s begin with our friends in the telecommunications and media industries, specifically around the topic of content distribution.

But let’s start at a familiar point for many of us…

If you’re like most people, when it comes to TV, movies, and video content, you’re an avid (sometimes binge-watching) fan of video streaming and video on-demand.  More and more people are opting to view content via streaming technologies.  In fact, a growing number of broadcast shows are viewed on mobile and streaming devices, as are a number of live events, such as this year’s NCAA basketball tournament via streaming devices.

These are fascinating data points to ponder, but think about what goes on behind them.

How does all this video content get stored, managed, and streamed?

Suffice it to say, telecom and media companies around the world are addressing this exact challenge with content delivery networks (CDN).  There are a variety of interesting technologies out there to help develop CDNs, and one interesting new technology to enable this is object storage, especially when it comes to petabytes of data.

Here’s how object storage helps when it comes to streaming content.

  • With streaming content comes a LOT of data.  Managing and moving that data is a key area to address, and object storage handles it well.  It allows telecom and media companies to effectively manage many petabytes of content with ease – many IT options lack that ability to scale.  Features in object storage like replication and erasure coding allow users to break large volumes of data into bite size chunks, and disperse it over several different server nodes, and often times, several different geographic locations.  As data is needed, it is rapidly re-compiled and distributed as needed.
  • Raise your hand if you absolutely love to wait for your video content to load.  (Silence.)  The fact is, no one likes to see the status bar slowly creeping along, while you’re waiting for zombies, your futbol club, or the next big singing sensation to show up on the screen.  Because object storage technologies are able to support super high bandwidth and millions of HTTP requests per minute, any customer looking to distribute media is able to allow their customers access to content with superior performance metrics.  It has a lot to do with the network, but also with the software managing the data behind the network, and object storage fits the bill.

These are just two of the considerations, and there are many others, but object storage becomes an interesting technology to consider if you’re looking to get content or media online, especially if you are in the telecom or media space.

Want a real life example? Check out how our customer RTL II, a European based television station, addressed their video streaming challenge with object storage.  It’s all detaile here in this case study – “RTL II shifts video archive into hyperscale with HP and Scality.”  Using HP ProLiant SL4540 big data servers and object storage software from HP partner Scality, RTL II was able to boost their video transfer speeds by 10x

Webinar this week! If this is a space you could use more education on, Scality and HP will be hosting a couple of webinars this week, specifically around object storage and content delivery networks.  If you’re looking for more on this, be sure to join us – here are the details:

Session 1 (Time-friendly for European and APJ audiences)

  • Who:  HP’s big data strategist, Sanjeet Singh, and Scality VP, Leo Leung
  • Date:  Wed, Apr 8, 2015
  • Time:  3pm Central Europe Summer / 8am Central US
  • Registration Link

Session 2 (Time-friendly for North American audiences)

  • Who:  HP Director, Joseph George, and Scality VP, Leo Leung
  • Date:  Wed, Apr 8, 2015
  • Time: 10am Pacific US / 12 noon Central US
  • Registration Link

And as always, for any questions at all, you can always send us an email at BigDataEcosystem@hp.com or visit us at www.hp.com/go/ProLiant/BigDataServer.

And now off to relax and watch some TV – via streaming video of course!

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

Purpose-Built Solutions Make a Big Difference In Extracting Data Insights: HP ProLiant SL4500

October 20, 2014 Leave a comment

This is a duplicate of the blog I’ve authored on the HP blog site at http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Hyperscale-Computing-Blog/Purpose-Built-Solutions-Make-a-Big-Difference-In-Extracting-Data/ba-p/173222#.VEUdYrEo70c

Indulge me as I flash back to the summer of 2012 at the Aquatics Center in London, England – it’s the Summer Olympics, where some of the world’s top swimmers, representing a host of nations, are about to kick off the Men’s 100m Freestyle swimming competition. The starter gun fires, and the athletes give it their all in a heated head to head match for the gold.

And the results of the race are astounding: USA’s Nathan Adrian took the gold medal with a time of 47.52 seconds, with Australia’s James Magnussen finishing a mere 0.01 seconds later to claim the silver medal! It was an incredible display of competition, and a real testament to power of the human spirit.

For an event demanding such precise timing, we can only assume that very sensitive and highly calibrated measuring devices were used to capture accurate results. And it’s a good thing they did – fractions of a second separated first and second place.

Now, you and I have both measured time before – we’ve checked our watches to see how long it has been since the workday started, we’ve used our cell phones to see how long we’ve been on the phone, and so on. It got the job done. Surely the Olympic judges at the 2012 Men’s 100m Freestyle had some of these less precise options available – why didn’t they just simply huddle around one of their wrist watches to determine the winner of the gold, silver and bronze?

OK, I am clearly taking this analogy to a silly extent to make a point.

When you get serious about something, you have to step up your game and secure the tools you need to ensure the job gets done properly.

There is a real science behind using purpose-built tools to solve complex challenges, and the same is true with IT challenges, such as those addressed with big data / scale out storage. There are a variety of infrastructure options to deal with the staggering amounts of data, but there are very few purpose built server solutions like HP’s ProLiant SL4500 product – a server solution built SPECIFCIALLY for big data and scale out storage.

The HP ProLiant SL4500 was built to handle your data. Period.

  • It provides an unprecedented drive capacity with over THREE PB in a single rack
  • It delivers scalable performance across multiple drive technologies like SSD, SAS or SATA
  • It provides significant energy savings with shared cooling and power and reduced complexity with fewer cables
  • It offers flexible configurations •A 1-node, 60 large form factor drive configuration, perfect for large scale object storage with software vendors like Cleversafe and Scality, or with open source projects like OpenStack Swift and Ceph
  • A 2-node, 25 drive per node configuration, ideal for running Microsoft Exchange
  • A 3-node, 15 drive per node configuration, optimal for running Hadoop and analytics applications

If you’re serious about big data and scale out storage, it’s time to considering stepping up your game with the SL4500. Purpose-built makes a difference, and the SL4500 was purpose-built to help you make sense of your data.

You can learn more about the SL4500 by talking to your HP rep or by visiting us online at HP ProLiant SL4500 Scalable Systems or at Object Storage Software for ProLiant.

And if you’re here at Hadoop World this week, come on by the HP booth – we’d love to chat about how we can help solve your data challenges with SL4500 based solutions.

Until next time,

Joseph George

@jbgeorge

NOW AVAILABLE: The Dell Red Hat Cloud Solution, powered by RHEL OpenStack Platform!

April 16, 2014 Leave a comment

.

This is a duplicate of a blog I posted on del.ly/60119gex.

This week, those of us on the OpenStack and Red Hat OpenStack teams are partying like its 1999! (For those of you who don’t get that reference, read this first.)

Let me provide some context…

In 1999, when Linux was still in the early days of being adopted broadly by the enterprise (similar to an open source cloud project we all know), Dell and Red Hat joined forces to bring the power of Linux to the mainstream enterprise space.

Fast forward to today, and we see some interesting facts:

  • Red Hat has become the world’s first billion dollar open source company
  • 1 out of every 5 servers sold annually runs Linux
  • Enterprise’s view of open source is far more receptive than in the past

So today – Dell and Red Hat are doing it again: this time with OpenStack.

Today, we announce the availability of the Dell Red Hat Cloud Solution, Powered by Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform – a hardware + software + services solution focused on enabling the broader mainstream market with the ability to run and operate OpenStack backed by Dell and Red Hat.  This is a hardened architecture, a validated distribution of OpenStack, additional software, and services / support to get you going and keep you going, and lets you:

  • Accelerate your time to value with jointly engineered open, flexible components and purpose engineered configurations to maximize choice and eliminate lock-in
  • Expand on your own terms with open, modular architectures and stable OpenStack technologies that can scale out to meet your evolving IT and business needs
  • Embrace agility with open compute, storage, and networking technologies to transform your application development, delivery, and management
  • Provide leadership to your organization with new agile, open IT services capable of massive scalability to meet dynamic business demands

Here is one more data point to consider – Dell’s IT organization is using the RHEL OpenStack Platform as a foundational element for incubating new technologies with a self-service cloud infrastructure. Now, that is pretty strong statement about how an OpenStack cloud can help IT drive innovation in a global scale organization.

At the end of the day, both Dell and Red Hat are committed to getting OpenStack to the enterprise with the right level of certification, validation, training, and support.

We’ve done it before with RHEL, and we’re going to do it again with OpenStack.

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

 

 

It’s OpenStack Foundation Election Time!

December 5, 2013 Leave a comment
.
If you’re a member of the OpenStack community, you’re aware that the community is accepting nominations for the Foundation Board of Directors.
.
I was fortunate enough to be nominated by a couple of folks so I thought I’d post some of my details on my blog.
.
If you’re interested in getting me on the ballot (I need 10 nominations to do so), you can do so here: http://www.openstack.org/community/members/profile/1313
.
======
.

What is your relationship to OpenStack, and why is its success important to you? What would you say is your biggest contribution to OpenStack’s success to date?

In addition to serving on the OpenStack Foundation Board of Directors as a Gold Member Director from Dell, I was also the product manager that brought Dell’s first hardware + software + services OpenStack solution to market in July of 2011.  Now leading a team of professionals on OpenStack, we have brought multiple OpenStack solutions to market, including enabling Hyper-V with a market solution.
.

I believe OpenStack represents a trend that service providers and enterprise IT are making to deeper community collaboration on new technologies and practices, and I will continue to drive the initiative to make my customers and the community successful in a very real-world meaningful way.

.

Describe your experience with other non profits or serving as a board member. How does your experience prepare you for the role of a board member?

I have been active in a number of community and local church capacities that have enabled me to serve as a board member.  That, in addition to my past year as an OpenStack board member, has provided me a pragmatic view of how to grow a community from both a technical and a business perspective.
.
.

What do you see as the Board’s role in OpenStack’s success?

The Board should be the guardian of the business functions of the OpenStack community, as well as strategists as to where OpenStack CAN go and SHOULD go – to further attract more developers, more implementers, and more users.
.
.

What do you think the top priority of the Board should be in 2014?

I see this as three main priorities, though not exclusive of other priorities:
.

1.  Clarify the definition of OpenStack – what is core, what is compliant, and what is not.

2.  Understand where the strategic opportunities lie for OpenStack as a technology, and clear the path to ensure OpenStack gets there.

3.  Fully enable any and every new entrant to OpenStack in a real way – developers, implementers, and users – with the right level of documentation, tools, community support, and vendor support.

.

Thanks, and appreciate your nomination to represent the OpenStack Foundation in 2014!

Until next time,

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

THIS JUST IN: Dell, SUSE, Microsoft, and Cloudbase Collaborate to Enable Hyper-V for OpenStack-based SUSE Cloud 2.0

September 24, 2013 Leave a comment

.

(Note this is a cross-post of a blog I posted on the official Dell blog site, the company I work for.  The original blog is at http://is.gd/Ie6s10.)

(Also note the press release this blog relates to is at http://is.gd/W7e1BZ.)

Dell and SUSE: refining the art and science of OpenStack cloud deployments

The Dell OpenStack cloud solutions team is excited to unveil our newly enhanced Dell SUSE Cloud Solution,  powered by OpenStack. This newly enhanced cloud infrastructure solution makes multi-hypervisor clouds a reality. It is now possible to operate data center cloud environments with nodes running KVM, Xen, and Hyper-V hypervisors.

So, what is so new here?

These enhancement to the Dell OpenStack Cloud Solution are delivered via Dell solution integration with SUSE Cloud 2.0 – an enterprise-ready OpenStack distribution for building private clouds now with the ability to support Hyper-V nodes installed by Crowbar.

We continue to listen to our customers, and understand their desire for choice. Through this solution we are providing customers a Microsoft hypervisor choice in addition to KVM. With support for multiple hypervisors, SUSE Cloud 2.0  provides extended flexibility so you can optimize cloud workloads on whatever hypervisor delivers the ideal operational and performance benefits in your environment. This flexibility is a key to efficiency in today’s hyper-heterogeneous data centers. After all, isn’t  this what cloud computing is all about?

What exactly is the Dell SUSE Cloud Solution?

Simply put, this solution is an end-to-end private cloud solution, with the following core components:

  • SUSE Cloud 2.0: SUSE’s enterprise-ready OpenStack distribution, with an integrated installation framework based on the Dell-initiated Crowbar open source project, enabling organizations to rapidly deploy OpenStack private clouds. This OpenStack distribution delivers all the integrated OpenStack projects including Nova, Swift, Cinder, Neutron, Keystone, Glance, and Dashboard.
  • SUSE Studio: The award-winning SUSE image building solution enables enterprises to rapidly adapt and deploy applications into the SUSE Cloud image repository or public clouds.
  • SUSE Manager: Manages Linux workloads and enables the efficient management, maintenance and monitoring of Linux workloads across physical, virtual, and public or private cloud environments.
  • Dell platforms and reference architecture: The Dell SUSE Cloud Solution includes a validated and certified reference architecture with Dell PowerEdge C6220 and R720/R720XD server systems and Dell networking infrastructure.
  • Dell and SUSE Professional services, support and training: Enterprise services for complete assessment, design, deployment and ongoing support, provided through a cooperative support model leveraging the combined capabilities of Dell and SUSE.

In addition to enhancing the core cloud software platform, the Dell and SUSE teams have delivered enhancements to the Dell Crowbar Operations Platform to rapidly instantiate hardware and deploy these multi-hypervisor environments.

Dell Crowbar is the robust open-source installation framework that simplifies, standardizes and automates the setup of OpenStack multi-hypervisor clouds. Dell and SUSE are actively developing and refining Crowbar, so you can fully configure your environment, automatically discover and configure new hardware platforms, and simply deploy the complete cloud software stack — all in a repeatable manner, in a fraction of the time required of manual efforts.

SUSE Studio and SUSE Manager are also available from SUSE, so you can quickly assemble applications into your image repository and easily monitor and maintain your deployed applications across your cloud resources.

Why consider open source solutions for your cloud?

Open source clouds allow you to innovate on open platforms and frameworks to accelerate your time-to-market and time-to-value. By leveraging community building and collaboration with the OpenStack project, you can gain direct control over your cloud infrastructure and the software you use to manage it – this is why OpenStack is the fastest growing open source project on the planet. Further, with OpenStack you have the opportunity to develop and refine our own features rather than wait for commercial vendors, who may or may not release the features you want when you want them.

Bottom line: OpenStack is faster, flexible, more cost efficient, and can be tuned for your environment.

How does OpenStack fit into Dell’s Cloud strategy?

Dell’s Cloud strategy is focused on three areas: enabling private cloud, deploying multi-cloud management and supplying cloud builders. OpenStack is key to our first pillar of enabling private clouds and allows us to provide customers with flexible, open cloud solutions so they can eliminate vendor lock-in and build solutions that best suit their needs.

Four Weeks, Four Webinars: A Deep Dive into the Dell SUSE Cloud Solution, Powered by OpenStack

Starting on September 26th, Dell and SUSE are hosting a webinar series for system administrators, DevOps engineers and solution architects. Please join us to get a step-by-step walkthrough of the joint Dell and SUSE OpenStack-based private cloud solution.

Shout out for OpenStack Summit 

To learn more and Dell and SUSE solutions for OpenStack Clouds live Come and visit Dell at OpenStack Summit in Hong Kong. It’s coming fast – See you there!

Until next time.

JOSEPH
@jbgeorge

Rock The [OpenStack] Vote!

August 17, 2013 Leave a comment

.

Well its that time of the year again!OpenStack

(I guess that’s fairly a open ended statement – I could be talking about the beginning of the school year, the start of football season, or the summer solstice.)

I’m talking about getting your votes in for sessions at the OpenStack Summit coming up in Hong Kong this November!

If you’re a member of the OpenStack community, you should have received a note this past week requesting your help to select which sessions should be represented at the Design Summit and User Conference this fall.

Now, let me be clear – this should not be a popularity contest on presenters (like me) or vendors (like Dell, the company I work for), but rather where you see need for certain experts to discuss a topic that is important to the OpenStack development community or to the OpenStack user community. 

Yours truly has submitted a few sessions as well for your consideration – check it out:

  • Remain Calm and Deploy On! (or How the Crowbar Community Is Innovating for Success with OpenStack)
      
    In this session, I’m planning to highlight the importance of deployment technologies in implementing OpenStack as a cloud option, and how we’ve approached it by developing our own open source project, Crowbar.  I’ll be joined by Crowbar community contributors Intel (who are working on Crowbar capabilities for Intel Hadoop and Intel TXT security) and SUSE (who have incorporated a SUSE skinned version of Crowbar into their SUSE Cloud product).  I expect it will be a great interactive session with the goal of educating the audience on how Crowbar can enable them to get going faster with OpenStack.
      
  • Enterprise Hypervisors: How Three Companies Are Making OpenStack with Hyper-V a Reality
      
    Earlier this year, we announced Dell taking an active role in bringing true Hyper-V hypervisor support to OpenStack.  To provide an update on progress there, I’m proposing a topic to present jointly with peers at SUSE, who we’ve partnered with on the Dell SUSE Cloud Solution, powered by OpenStack, and Cloudbase, who have been pioneers in Hyper-V enablement in OpenStack, to talk through how customers can implement a Hyper-V based OpenStack solution using technology from all three companies.  There has been solid work to date, including Crowbar integration, so I expect this will be a lively one!
      
  • Build in OpenStack Security with Crowbar and Intel TXT
      
    I can’t tell you how excited I am about how the Crowbar project has evolved over the years.  It started as an answer to the problem of “how do I deploy OpenStack on bare metal?” but has now emerged as a broad software platform for innovation covering cloud, hadoop, and other use cases.  One telltale sign of progress to me is how others are leveraging Crowbar, and cloud security is definitely an interesting area.  This session is one where I’ll present with my friends at Intel to talk through how Intel has developed Crowbar functionality for their Intel TXT secure resource pool solution.  Expect a lot of Q&A on this one.
      

And that’s it!

Appreciate you voting with the community’s best interest in mind!

And you can learn more about the coming OpenStack Summit here – http://www.openstack.org/summit/openstack-summit-hong-kong-2013/ 

Until next time!

JBG
@jbgeorge