Red Hat's Commitment to OpenStack Icehouse

April 24, 2014

Red Hat Corporate Communications team

The OpenStack Foundation unveiled its latest release – OpenStack Icehouse – on April 17, and while Bitergia is still crunching the numbers, once again, Red Hat was the top corporate contributor. While we’re certainly proud of our ongoing work in the OpenStack community, our role as a leading open source contributor is no secret. Community-powered innovation is at our core, and Red Hat’s commitment to OpenStack is no different. One interesting point, pointed out by Bitergia in its preliminary technical report on the Icehouse release, is that the top contributors to OpenStack have not changed between Havana and Icehouse. To us, this shows that the community behind OpenStack is both stabilizing and maturing, as we’ve seen over the years with other key open source projects, including Linux. More so, this underscores why we are focused on leading OpenStack in many different areas – from the community to the enterprise. We believe this leadership is what will help drive OpenStack’s success both as a project and in the enterprise.

Red Hat is committed to participating and contributing in the OpenStack community over the long term, as we have since the Essex release in 2011. More important than the “vanity statistics,” our goal is to deliver true innovation through the OpenStack community. We are involved in every core OpenStack project and many of the emerging projects. Like the Linux community in which Red Hat also participates deeply, we see OpenStack as a healthy and diverse community, and one that benefits our customers and differentiates us from “compile-and-ship” OpenStack offerings.

We are also involved in the key Linux projects upon which OpenStack depends, such as KVM (for compute virtualization), OpenDaylight (for software-defined networking (SDN)), and Open vSwitch. Our deep involvement and commitment to OpenStack and to the underlying Linux dependencies that are critical to OpenStack make Red Hat a credible choice for organizations looking for a fully integrated OpenStack solution.

In many ways, the use of OpenStack is like Linux ten years ago. OpenStack is quickly evolving, and advanced OpenStack users have grown their own expertise in house and rolled their own OpenStack using freely available software components (including free distributions like RDO, the Red Hat curated community for deploying OpenStack on Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora, CentOS, and other Red Hat Enterprise Linux derivatives). But as OpenStack is evolving, it is also maturing rapidly and becoming suitable for more and more organizations, and a variety of customers and vendors are seeing the value of partnering with Red Hat for their OpenStack solutions. As we announced last week during Red Hat Summit, several dozen organizations have embarked on proof-of-concept deployments for Red Hat’s OpenStack offerings, with customers around the world now moving to enterprise deployments.

Red Hat customers are represented in the development of new features we contribute to the OpenStack community, without having to dedicate their own engineers and developers to participating in OpenStack directly. This is especially important for those organizations where engineers may be limited in their ability to work on open source projects, but benefits all organizations that want to dedicate their developers to working on projects that add unique and differentiating value to their organization - all while leveraging the power of the open source model.

Red Hat offers an enterprise lifecycle for OpenStack, in which new OpenStack releases are actively supported for up to three years. This enables a customer to standardize on a single release of OpenStack, but continue to benefit from innovation, performance, and security in future releases in the form of bug fixes, security errata, performance enhancements, and feature backports. We bring the value we have offered to Red Hat Enterprise Linux customers for more than a decade to OpenStack.

Red Hat has built the industry’s largest certified ecosystem of hardware and software partners in support of commercial OpenStack deployments. This certification program offers customers the assurance that their various IT vendors collaborate to deliver and support OpenStack on enterprise hardware and software platforms. Since we introduced it at the OpenStack Summit in April 2013, the ecosystem has grown to over 1000 certified solutions for compute, storage and networking. At the recent Red Hat Summit in San Francisco, 45 Red Hat OpenStack Cloud Infrastructure Partner Network members displayed their certified solutions, building momentum for the upcoming OpenStack Summit in Atlanta.

Red Hat also offers certification and training for OpenStack professionals, building on the industry standard Red Hat Certified Engineer certification, enabling professionals to build their OpenStack skills on a solid technical base, and offering employers a proven, rigorous quality certification to hire proficient employees.

Finally, while OpenStack offers the next generation in cloud infrastructure, it’s no surprise that organizations need more than that to build an open hybrid cloud infrastructure. We’ve built our product portfolio to address the requirements of the cloud, including enterprise Linux, virtualization, software-defined storage, public and private Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), middleware, and cloud management, all from a single vendor, with integrations and certifications with other vendor solutions.

These solutions are now poised to expand beyond just the enterprise, as OpenStack is not just for private compute clouds. Our customers and partners are beginning to develop OpenStack for public cloud providers and ISPs, for network functions virtualization (NFV) in telecommunications and service providers, and for content syndication and storage farms. Red Hat is leading the adoption of OpenStack into these new areas, while simultaneously developing open source technologies such as OpenDaylight SDN and GlusterFS scale-out storage that underlie these use cases.

No other open source company offers users the breadth and depth of solutions built on OpenStack - while being the number one contributor to the OpenStack Icehouse release is nice, what matters more is of the expertise, support, and innovation that Red Hat can offer current and future OpenStack users.

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