Kicking off discussion about OpenStack Core

What's in?I’ve been leading an effort with Alan Clark to define “what is OpenStack core” for the Foundation Board.  Now that I am sitting here at OSCON and celebrating OpenStack’s third birthday, I think it’s a great time to bring the general community into the discussion.

There is significant history behind this topic.  According to Foundation governance, the Technical Committee (TC) defines which incubated projects are integrated and the Board of Directors (I am one) determines which of the integrated projects are labeled as core.

When it comes to the core label, the stakes are high.

Defining core is a convoluted topic.  To make it digestible, I’m breaking it down into multiple blog posts over a series of weeks:

  1. Why do we care about core?
  2. Decomposing the problem (“the spider”)
  3. Insights from decomposition (healthy tensions in OpenStack)
  4. 12 Positions: A Common Framework (I recommend ready the list of 10 instead)
  5. Community Feedback at OSCON 
  6. “What is Core” the visualization
  7. Where I think this is going, OpenStack’s Test Driven Core
  8. Core Positions Refined: the 10 positions behind the core visualization (above).
  9. Videos (most >90 mins).  The online meetups are easier to follow.
    1. 9/5 OpenStack Core Meetup in San Antonio
    2. 9/22 OpenStack Core Meetup in NYC
    3. online: 10/16 Online Meetup (daytime) and 10/22 Online Meetup (evening)
  10. Thinking about how to Implement OpenStack Core Definition

Too much reading?  At OSCON, Rafael Knuth shot a video of me talking about “what is core.”

Crowbar Celebrates 1st Anniversary

Nearly a year ago at OSCON 2011, my team at Dell opened sourced “Crowbar, an OpenStack installer.” That first Github commit was a much more limited project than Crowbar today: there was no separation into barclamps, no distinct network configuration, one operating system option and the default passwords were all “openstack.” We simply did not know if our effort would create any interest.

The response to Crowbar has been exciting and humbling. I most appreciate those who looked at Crowbar and saw more than a bare metal installer. They are the ones who recognized that we are trying to solve a bigger problem: it has been too difficult to cope with change in IT operations.

During this year, we have made many changes. Many have been driven by customer, user and partner feedback while others support Dell product delivery needs. Happily, these inputs are well aligned in intent if not always in timing.

  • Introduction of barclamps as modular components
  • Expansion into multiple applications (most notably OpenStack and Apache Hadoop)
  • Multi-Operating System
  • Working in the open (with public commits)
  • Collaborative License Agreements

Dell‘s understanding of open source and open development has made a similar transformation. Crowbar was originally Apache 2 open sourced because we imagined it becoming part of the OpenStack project. While that ambition has faded, the practical benefits of open collaboration have proven to be substantial.

The results from this first year are compelling:

  • For OpenStack Diablo, coordination with the Rackspace Cloud Builder team enabled Crowbar to include the Keystone and Dashboard projects into Dell’s solution
  • For OpenStack Essex, the community focused work we did for the March Essex Hackday are directly linked to our ability to deliver Dell’s OpenStack-Powered Essex solution over two months earlier than originally planned.
  • For Apache Hadoop distributions for 3.x and 4.x with implementation of Cloudera Manager and eco system components.
  • We’ve amassed hundreds of mail subscribers and Github followers
  • Support for multiple releases of RHEL, Centos & Ubuntu including Ubuntu 12.04 while it was still in beta.
  • SuSE does their own port of Crowbar to SuSE with important advances in Crowbar’s install model (from ISO to package).

We stand on the edge of many exciting transformations for Crowbar’s second year. Based on the amount of change from this year, I’m hesitant to make long term predictions. Yet, just within next few months there are significant plans based on Crowbar 2.0 refactor. We have line of site to changes that expand our tool choices, improve networking, add operating systems and become more even production ops capable.

That’s quite a busy year!

OSCON preso: how Dell Crowbar brings DevOps to OpenStack Cloud (“No Soup for You!”)

Today I presented about how Crowbar + DevOps + OpenStack = CloudOps.   The highlight of the presentation (to me, anyway) is the Images vs Layers analogy of Soup vs Sandwiches.  I hope it helps explain why we believe that a DevOps approach to Cloud is essential to success.

Here’s the preso: OSCON 07 2011

I’ll add a link to the videos when they are available.

OpenStack at OSCON schedule & event signup

If you’re at OSCON, here’s where to find OpenStack content:

OpenStack Wednesday Evening Event (RSVP REQUIRED):

Wednesday, July 27, 7-9 pm, at Spirit of 77 (right across from the Oregon
Convention Center at the close of the day).  Join us to toast the first
anniversary of the fastest-growing open source project! Please register here and
help promote the event: http://openstack-one-year.eventbrite.com

Speaking Sessions, Wednesday, July 27


Introduction to OpenStack, Eric Day

Wednesday, 1:40 pm http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/19146

Using OpenStack APIs, Present and Future, Mike Mayo
Wednesday, 4:10 pm http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/18550

OpenStack Fundamentals Training Part 1, Swift, John Dickinson
Wednesday, 4:10 pm http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/21287

OpenStack Fundamentals Training Part 2, Nova, Jason Cannavale
Wednesday, 5:00 pm http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/21347

OpenStack One-Year Anniversary Party, Spirit of 77
Wednesday, 7-9 pm http://openstack-one-year.eventbrite.com/

Speaking Sessions, Thursday, July 28

See why Rob says “No Soup for You” about Cloud Deployments.

Prying Open the Cloud with Dell Crowbar and OpenStack, Joseph George, Rob Hirschfeld
Thursday, 10:40 am http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/21206

OpenStack + Ceph, Ben Cherian, Jonathan Bryce
Thursday, 1:40 pm http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/21174

Achieving Hybrid Cloud Mobility with OpenStack and XCP, Paul Voccio, Ewan Mellor
Thursday, 2:30 pm http://www.oscon.com/oscon2011/public/schedule/detail/18726

I’ll be at OSCON 7/25-29/11 (Dell=sponsor & speaking w/ @jbgeorge)

As part of our commitment to open source, Dell is a sponsor of OSCON 2011.  The Dell OpenStack Cloud team will have a booth presence with our well-travelled Crowbar Install rack (now with BOTH PowerEdge C6100 & C6105s).  We’re doing our famous 30 minute OpenStack installs and handing out goodies including USB keys. 

Joseph George (@jbgeorge) and I are speaking:

We’ll be giving specifics about how Crowbar works to deliver the Dell OpenStack Cloud Solution including a narrated demo and details about how the community can extend Crowbar using barclamps.

Note:  Stephen Spector (opnstk_com_mgr), the amazing OpenStack community manager, wanted me to remind everyone that we’re celebrating OpenStack’s 1 year anniversary with activites at OSCON.  He’s asking for video commentary about OpenStack and RSVPs if you can attend the events.  More at OpenStack Blog.