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Today, Red Hat and Cisco announced that we are expanding our long standing relationship to drive innovation in OpenStack cloud environments for enterprises and service providers. As the press release indicates, a key aspect of this collaboration and innovation is around Ceph, a leading open source project for software-defined storage.
Earlier this year, in May, Red Hat acquired Inktank, the company behind the Ceph project. Inktank’s products are now an integral part of Red Hat’s storage and big data portfolio. While there are many reasons why we are excited to be part of today’s announcement, I wanted to highlight a few:
OpenStack and Ceph – A perfect pairing.
In the most recent OpenStack Foundation OpenStack User Survey, more than 20% of production OpenStack deployments were using Ceph for their scale out storage. Ceph provides a unified block and object solution for OpenStack and its distributed and modular architecture enables independent scaling out of compute from storage across the OpenStack environment, offering unparalleled flexibility and control without being locked in to a proprietary solution.
Community-driven innovation at its best

Even before Red Hat’s acquisition of Inktank , Cisco had been collaborating with Inktank to continue to innovate on the Ceph project. Due to the success of internal Ceph based deployments at Cisco, the company contributed Puppet scripts and other open sources tools to the Ceph community. The two companies have also contributed to the Nimbus project, an open source toolkit focused on providing IaaS capabilities to the scientific community.

Standards drive volume
The Ceph architecture is built on and compatible with storage specific interfaces and standards for OpenStack. Since the OpenStack Folsom release (in 2012), Ceph has been officially integrated into OpenStack. Ceph serves as a native Cinder block provider for volumes and virtual images within OpenStack. Furthermore, Ceph Object storage provides complete compatibility with the Swift API.
Looking ahead, we plan to jointly work on authoring Cisco Verified Design (CVD) – reference architectures that provide simple and repeatable "cookbooks" to deploy and configure a storage cloud using Red Hat’s Inktank Ceph Enterprise product within OpenStack for enterprises and service providers around the world.
Today marks a great milestone in our on-going collaboration with Cisco around Ceph. Both companies have a shared vision of cloud storage. We look forward to continue to work with Cisco on delivering the best solutions for cloud storage on Cisco UCS platforms for OpenStack environments and continue to keep the momentum unabated around community-driven innovation.

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