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5 open source Cloud computing projects to watch

Software engineering focus on infrastructure management

Cloud computing is taking IT by storm and the vendors have scrambled to offer services and software around this emerging phenomenon.

The definition of Cloud computing is still open to fierce debate, but the range of technologies available for Cloud deployments continues to grow rapidly.

In this edition of 5 open source things to watch, we take a look at Cloud computing technologies used to create private and public Clouds which can then simplify application and infrastructure management without stretching your resources.

1. Eucalyptus

The Eucalyptus project aims to bring a similar level of functionality of the Amazon Web Service Cloud to public and private environments.

In fact, Eucalyptus implements the Amazon Web Service API to allow interoperability with existing Cloud services and tools.

Eucalytpus supports both the KVM and Xen hypervisors for a range of Linux distributions.

Last month the project received endorsement from Red Hat is the form of a solutions partnership.

Eucalyptus can support resource management in private and public Cloud services.

Licence: GPL

2. Sheepdog

Sheepdog is a Cloud storage system for the Linux Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) that provides highly-available block level storage volumes in KVM clusters.

The Sheepdog project originated at NTT Laboratories in Japan.

Sheepdog scales to several hundreds nodes, and supports advanced volume management features such as snapshot, cloning, and thin provisioning.

Sheepdog is still under active development so it may not be widely deployed in hosting environments, let alone private clouds, but it’s definitely one Cloud project to keep an eye on.

Licence: GPL

3. Ganeti

Ganeti is a virtual server management and cluster tool for Xen and KVM hypervisors developed and hosted by Google.

Clouds can be created and managed with Ganeti’s suite of apps and virtual machines can be recovered in the event of a physical machine failures.

Ganeti scales from one to 40 physical nodes and can do live migration of virtual machines across and between clusters.

Support for Ganeti is available through the public mailing lists.

Licence: GPL

4. OpenStack

OpenStack burst onto the Cloud scene six months ago and promises to create a standard for public and private Cloud infrastructure. It is developed by hosting provider Rackspace in conjunction with NASA.

OpenStack consists of two integrated projects - OpenStack Compute and OpenStack Object Storage for managing computing and storage resources, respectively.

The Compute project handles the virtual machine management (Xen and KVM) and the authorisation and network management.

The Storage component brings physical server storage into fault-tolerant pools.

OpenStack now has quite a number of software companies involved in its ecosystem.

Licence: Apache Licence

5. OpenNebula

OpenNebula proclaims itself as the “open source toolkit for cloud computing” and pre-dates the Cloud buzzword phenomenon as it began life as a research project in 2005.

OpenNebula manages users, virtual OS images, virtual networks, services and storage.

Hypervisor support includes Xen, VMware and KVM and “Cloudbusting” can be done to shift workloads onto Amazon’s infrastructure if required.

Clouds can also be federated for even more scalability. Commercial support is available.

Licence: Apache Licence

For more articles in this series, be sure to check out:
5 open source virtualisation technologies to watch
5 open source security projects to watch
5 open source network management projects to watch
5 open source CRM systems to watch
5 open source VoIP softphones to watch
5 open source billing systems to watch
5 open source office suites to watch
5 open source IP telephony projects to watch
5 open source help desk apps to watch
5 enterprise open source wiki apps to watch
5 open source project management apps to watch
5 free project management applications you must try

Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.

More about: Amazon, Apache, ASA, etwork, Google, KVM, Linux, NASA, Nebula, NTT, Red Hat, VMware
References show all




Nice list but you forgot openQRM -

Georgina Swan



Thanks for the tip, Matt



if anybody is interested in running an open source private cloud web spreadsheet server, I would recommend Sheester Standing Cloud:

IT departments and web developers can take full advantage of a cloud-based office suite without having the administrative burden of managing physical servers.

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