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The general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 is a big step toward a higher standard for deploying OpenStack in the enterprise. Red Hat Storage is at the epicenter of the announcement. One of the releases's highlights is the new Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 director, a deployment and management tool that offers Red Hat Ceph Storage as its default block storage solution. 

Red Hat crafted its Red Hat Ceph Storage support for the new director with Puppet modules from the thriving Ceph community. These same modules form the basis for other deployment tools being built in Red Hat Storage. This integration with OpenStack deployments heralds the next step in the progression toward a comprehensive and unified storage portfolio for petabyte-scale deployments and beyond.

Simplified deployment and management

Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 director is designed to simplify installation, ease day-to-day management tasks and establish a foundation for future live system updates and upgrades. It gives cloud operators a simple, automated means of managing operations and provisioning resources. Designed to work with both existing and greenfield Red Hat Ceph Storage clusters, the new director allows customers to provision both their OpenStack and Red Hat Ceph Storage clusters from one comprehensive tool and to manage their clusters over the full development lifecycle.


Volume conversion

Of course, the general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 brings with it other good news for enterprise storage customers. For example, customers looking to migrate legacy virtual machine (VM) images or volumes into OpenStack from other virtualization platforms can now import qcow2 files and have them converted to RAW format. Those files can be imported into Cinder or Glance, where Red Hat Ceph Storage can convert them to RBD format and customers can leverage Red Hat Ceph Storage to its fullest.

Cinder HA service

Another storage-related facet of Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 general availability is the Cinder HA service. When combined with Red Hat Ceph Storage, this service delivers a robust, fault-tolerant block service, and one that allows Cinder volumes to remain available if one or multiple nodes hosting the Cinder services or volumes go down. The service also:

  • Supports oversubscription in thin provisioning: The Cinder scheduler can now be aware of the thin provisioning/data reduction provided by the Red Hat Ceph Storage backend. Essentially, with the Cinder HA service, customers can maximize their Red Hat Ceph Storage clusters and leverage as more free space.

  • Offloads RBD copy_volume_to_image function: To expedite the volume data copy speed, the service reduces the amount of data transmission, as well as the IO load on cinder-volume host.

More to come

We expect there to be more, equally compelling features to come with future releases. The new director of Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 combines multiple technologies to offer one powerful tool that also establishes a new framework for live orchestrated OpenStack and director upgrades for Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform version 7 and subsequent releases. Similarly, Red Hat Storage is set on a trajectory to deliver a more comprehensive, unified portfolio that enables a massively scalable, fault-tolerant platform for private, public or hybrid clouds.

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