Change of cloud tack

Eucalyptus reverts back to open source roots

Chris Mayer

Realising they were losing their way, AWS-welcoming cloud vendor Eucalyptus can their open source/enterprise version model for a pure open source version of their on-premise platform

Realising they were veering off course slightly when it came to community engagement, the team behind Java coded, enterprise-class private cloud Eucalyptus have opted to ditch the enterprise/open source divide for a pure open source version of their software

Eucalyptus CEO, Mårten Mickos had previously acknowledged that his company hadn’t offered an enticing model when it came to cloud infrastructures, even going so far to say that it didn’t have “an architecture of participation where it’s fun.” That looks to have changed with the next release existing solely in one version, with the entire Eucalyptus’s codebase appearing on social coding haven, GitHub. It will also track all known bugs via JIRA.

The ties to Amazon Web Services have been well documented, with Eucalyptus being able to deploy EC2, S3, EBS and IAM compatible APIs for hybrid clouds. Eucalyptus 3.1 will also offer enterprise platform deployments for Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Virtualization and VMware’s Vcentre 5, alongside being able to work with most Linux distributions. Eucalyptus will also introduce FastStart, which as you’ve probably ascertained, is a tool that speeds up AWS-compliant cloud deployment to around 20 minutes, according to the company.

This change in tactic appears to be so Eucalyptus’s elastic private cloud implementation can compete with the likes of CloudStack and OpenStack, as they both go on the charm offensive to garner favour with potential partners. Despite quashing the enterprise structure, they still want to attract enterprises to the product, but feel the best way to achieve this is by breaking the walls down to allow forking to occur.

Mickos told InfoWorld Senior Analyst, Ted Sansom:

We decided that some of those constructs were overly complicated. We decided we wanted to move faster and be more open to the world. One code base allows us to move faster.

The stake are now so high in the commercial cloud field that you need a burgeoning ecosystem around your product to have any hope in surviving. Yes, Eucalyptus made a mistake in the first place but were reactive enough to realise it and give the code back to the community to play with – which in theory should create a buzz. The pressure from those already offering cloud management as part of their services (the aforementioned CloudStack and OpenStack) forced their hand to some extent – but it was a move that needed to be made.

Either way, its iron-clad partnership with AWS in supporting its APIs will make sure that Eucalyptus has a say for some time yet. Customers can expect to see the new features in Eucalyptus 3.1 on June 27th, but can get a sneak peek through the GitHub repository to get an idea of how the open sourcing is going.

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