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Dell 'Crowbar' Speeds OpenStack Deployment

OpenStack's open cloud platform gains momentum as Dell launches an OpenStack-based IaaS cloud solution, while Gluster releases an OpenStack connector for its cloud storage.

OpenStack, an open source platform for the cloud, celebrated its first birthday this month and is continuing to gain momentum with partner announcements today.

Hardware giant Dell has unveiled its Dell OpenStack Cloud Solution, an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) offering which integrates the OpenStack cloud operating system, cloud-optimized Dell PowerEdge C servers, the Dell-developed “Crowbar” OpenStack installer, and services from Dell and Rackspace Cloud Builders.

Working Clouds in Hours, Not Days
One benefit of Dell’s Crowbar product is that it can be used to manage the OpenStack deployment from the initial server boot to the configuration of the primary components, allowing users to complete bare metal deployment of multi-node OpenStack clouds in a matter of hours, as opposed to days.

Dell has been part of the OpenStack community since its creation, and has worked closely with a number of key OpenStack partners, including Rackspace, Citrix, Opscode, Canonical, Intel, and others. Dell is also one of the industry’s most experienced partners to top global cloud services providers, including Facebook and Microsoft Windows Azure.

Some in the hosting industry are already using the Dell OpenStack Cloud Solution successfully. Simon Anderson, CEO of DreamHost, a web hosting company, said, "As we expand into cloud services based on Ceph, the open source distributed storage system sponsored by DreamHost, we've chosen Dell's PowerEdge C servers, OpenStack and Crowbar open source service provisioning software to enable a dramatic improvement in operational efficiencies at scale."

Gluster Adds Connector for OpenStack

Storage company Gluster (which provides storage for services such as Pandora) announced the Gluster Connector for OpenStack, which provides highly scalable and highly-available VM storage functionality for OpenStack. With last week's announcement of GlusterFS 3.3, OpenStack users will be able to add scale-out integrated file and object storage to any deployment. These two capabilities together enable OpenStack users to centralize on one storage solution for VMs, Object and file data simplifying their storage environment.

"We're happy to see OpenStack API's being implemented on other technologies, increasing the reach of the OpenStack ecosystem to new storage platforms," said Jonathan Bryce, Rackspace Cloud Founder and OpenStack Project Policy Board Chairman. "It's promising to see Gluster committed to supporting OpenStack as an industry standard and providing a storage alternative for OpenStack Compute deployments."

The Gluster Connector for OpenStack connects GlusterFS to the OpenStack Compute block storage controller, enabling users to scale-out the number of VMs deployed within their cloud environment and supports the virtual motion of the VMs within the OpenStack compute environment. The connector enables users to use GlusterFS as their file system within OpenStack and will be available under the Apache 2 open source license.

"In just a year, OpenStack has received great traction and is experiencing great success. By expanding the storage options for OpenStack deployments, we are enabling cloud deployments to scale up to new levels and seamlessly deploy object storage and VM virtual motion," said AB Periasamy, co-founder and CTO of Gluster. "OpenStack users will have access to integrated file and object storage which can be deployed in a wide range of environments with the Gluster Connector for OpenStack."

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