Dan's Take

Red Hat OpenStack Platform 12 Pushes Containers Forward

The new release is also about enhancing DevOps.

Red Hat just launched OpenStack Platform 12, the newest version of the company's Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) platform. This update is based on the "Pike" release of OpenStack.

Platform 12 is built on several Red Hat products, including Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Red Hat Cloud Forms, and, of course, Red Hat's virtualization products. Red Hat's OpenStack is tightly integrated with Ceph storage, so enterprises are able to deploy scale-out application environments that use block, object and file storage mechanisms as needed. Enhancements in the areas of security and network virtualization have also been added.

Red Hat hopes that enterprises will see this package as the ideal platform upon which to build their in-house cloud implementations. It also hopes that service providers will see this as a useful tool on which to build their products and services.

One of the goals of this release was to provide a containerized version of basic OpenStack services, making the computing environment more agile and easier for developers to use rapid application development approaches based on segmenting workloads into smaller, self-contained units that can be developed by independent teams.

Red Hat is itself using this more-agile development environment to offer "Distributed Continuous Integration" (DCI). This approach was introduced five releases ago, according to Red Hat. The company describes DCI in the following way:

"The primary goal of DCI is to help Red Hat ship the best quality OpenStack software in the industry. We do this by automating the deployment, testing, and feedback loop with our customers and partners, for pre and post product releases. This allows Red Hat to test real-world use cases, validating each with customer and partner-driven configurations. Today, DCI automatically delivers actionable logs to our quality engineering teams, reducing the amount of time it takes to identify, patch, and introduce fixes back into the upstream community."

Dan's Take: Comprehensive Solutions
In a previous article, I pointed to the trend toward deploying containers combined with Kubernetes as the foundation for next-generation applications.  The launch of Red Hat's OpenStack Platform 12 can be seen as supporting that notion.

Red Hat isn't alone in combining a number of open source projects to support a rapid application development approach. The goal is a highly distributed application deployment model, along with tools to enhance security and reliability. Underneath it all is virtualization technology that enhances storage and networking. Recent CoreOS and SUSE announcements play these same chords as part of their tune.

What differentiates Red Hat's announcement from the others is the comprehensive level of integration, a very broad management environment to simplify deployment and administration, and the attention paid to gathering customer input during the design phase of the company's packages.

About the Author

Daniel Kusnetzky, a reformed software engineer and product manager, founded Kusnetzky Group LLC in 2006. He's literally written the book on virtualization and often comments on cloud computing, mobility and systems software. He has been a business unit manager at a hardware company and head of corporate marketing and strategy at a software company.

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