Sunday, April 15, 2012

As the Open Stacks Turn

What a week for cloud computing!  First there was the news that CloudStack was released into the wild, then OpenStack created a foundation and brought in major players including IBM, Red Hat, and Canonical.

I'm not going to say which platform is better or discuss the technical merits.  But, I would like to add a comment on the possible future of each product.

Today, CloudStack appears to be a more production ready product and has a nice list of large customers but it has Citrix as the only major contributor to date.  OpenStack on the other hand is making great progress towards a goal of production ready and most of the code is coming from Rackspace.

But, (and it's a huge but in my opinion) what happens next?  It would appear the vast majority of the major technical players are aligning with OpenStack.  Can CloudStack make it if it is only backed by Citrix?

I'll give you my standard answer of "it depends".  It depends on which IBM, Red Hat, and others show up to the OpenStack party.  If most of the companies that joined the OpenStack foundation this week "phone it in" and are only at the table to make sure they can have their logo on the product, OpenStack will fail.  You will essentially continue to have what you have today, Citrix against Rackspace.

If IBM, Red Hat, and many of the others actively participate and contribute code, developers, time, etc. into the OpenStack product, then look out.  I'll be watching the list of contributors in the next few releases to see how the percentage of contributors per company breaks out and I suggest you do the same.

No comments: