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Videos from Build a Cloud Day at LISA '13

Posted by on in Events

Build a Cloud Day was co-located with LISA '13 (Large Installation Systems Administration) this year in Washington D.C. The program was designed to expose attendees to the concepts and best practices around deploying cloud computing infrastructure. Attendees learned how to deploy a cloud computing environment using CloudStack and other cloud infrastructure tools including those from Xen, Puppet Labs, SolidFire, GlusterFS and RiakCS.

The recordings of each presentation are now available for viewing.

Better, Faster, Cheaper Infrastructure with Apache CloudStack and Riak CS by John Burwell, Consulting Engineer at Basho Technologies

Software is eating infrastructure. By pulling reliability and scalability responsibilities up the stack from hardware into software, object stores such as Basho's Riak CS and cloud orchestration platforms such as Apache CloudStack increase the utilization of compute and storage resources by dynamically shifting workloads based on demand. Together, those platforms can saturate compute and storage of 1000s of hosts with strong operational visibility and end-user self-service.

This talk will cover the following topics to explore private cloud design principles and best practices:

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A recap from BACD Amsterdam

Posted by on in Cloud News

On June 13th we had a Build a Cloud Day workshop in Schuberg Phillis offices in Amsterdam. We had a good crowd with a little over 30 people gathering to learn about CloudStack, its use cases, monitoring, PaaS, SDN and client tools. We had good fun and it was a very productive meeting.

We started off with a talk from Arjan Eriks from Schuberg Phillis, Arjan gave us a terrific overview of the Schuberg's culture and how the Cloud and DevOps processes naturally appeared within Schuberg. Their team oriented approach to customer support evolved to using CloudStack as their core IT solution to provide an agile infrastructure that meets the need of their customers. Adding to the Cloud infrastructure, a DevOps culture permeated Schuberg even before DevOps really existed. His slides below will give you a good idea of how a company moves to the Cloud and uses agile methods to make customers and employees "happy".

Following Arjan we had the chance to hear from Julien Pivoto (@roidelapluie) of Inuits an IT consulting company that helps its customers adopt open source solutions and embrace a DevOps culture. Julien presented the suite of open source monitoring tools that can be used to monitor a Cloud infrastructure at scale. From logstash, elasticsearch and Kibana, to collectd, graphite and riemann. Julien did a great job introducing all these tools and explaining how they stitch together to help automation of a Cloud infrastructure.

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CloudStack is now an Apache Top Level Project (TLP) at the Apache Software Foundation (ASF), the announcement just came out. What the incubation period has meant for CloudStack has nothing to do with code maturity. CloudStack was mature and used in enterprise settings before it entered incubation at the ASF. What incubation meant was that CloudStack evolved into an open source community, self-governed by the Apache Way: transparency, meritocracy, respect, non-affiliation and consensus in no particular order. The community has learned and demonstrated that it understands the principles and processes laid by the Apache Software Foundation and that it can now operate more autonomously.

Growing an open source community is challenging, folks who participate come from various backgrounds, may seldom meet and interact mostly via emails, social media, instant messaging. Participants come from all over the world, work in different time-zones and donate their time after (and sometime while) dealing with day jobs and family. Participants rally around a project that they deem interesting, sometime just to lend a hand for a few months, or sometimes because their day job requires them to do it. In that very heterogeneous and fluctuating mix, an open source software community emerges, self-governed, sustainable and non-affiliated. In the last 12 months CloudStack has done just that, building a community from the ground up, developing and understanding the principles laid out in our bylaws, adapting -if need be- people's way of developing software, getting to know each other, welcoming new members every day and setting the foundation for a sustainable software.

When growing a community it is fairly natural to want to measure how well we are doing and how healthy the community is. Over the last several months I have started collecting some data to analyze our community, trying to see how we were doing and interacting. I mostly looked at our public mailing lists doing a study similar to the one done about comparing CloudStack, OpenNebula, OpenStack and Ecualyptus. Secretly, this was also a good way for me to sharpen a few skills on BigData, not that big actually but I used MongoDB instead of MySQL so that qualifies as BigData :). Defining membership in an open source community is a challenge since there is no concept of membership, even the concept of contribution is ill-defined. What constitutes a contribution ? Which channels need to be considered ? In the case of ASF for instance, contribution to code may only mean being a committer, but a committer is someone with write access to the code. Just counting committers will leave out all the folks sending patches, doing testing, doing user support, translating documentation, giving talks and so on. Also while at the ASF everything happens on the mailing list, what about IRC channels, social media like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin, and what about other communities that may arise around a particular software: sub-projects, user groups etc. In this analysis I decided to only look at our public mailing lists but there is more to it than just this data source.

The two figures below show the number of individual contributors measured by unique email addresses used to send messages to the users and developers mailing lists. The red lines represent data from the users and developers mailing list prior to entering incubation at the ASF. The blue lines represent the ASF specific lists. Significant is the impact that the move to the ASF has had on the number of contributors. The developers list has peaked over 200 per month and the users list has peaked over 150 per month so far (figure on the left). The last data point is March (as of March 21st) and numbers will go up by the end of the month. The graph on the right shows the accumulation of contributors, adding all unique email addresses every month into a set. This shows us again that the move to ASF has had a huge impact on the growth rate of the community and that both lists grow at relatively the same pace. Adding the accumulated number of contributors to both list and removing duplicates present in both sets, this gives us a magic number of 722 CloudStack contributors to date.

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Building a Cloud in San Diego

Posted by on in Events

build-a-cloud-dayIf you’re attending LISA, or just happen to be in San Diego, come join us next Friday (December 14) for a Build A Cloud Day (BACD).

From 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., we’ll be running several sessions on cloud computing that will be worthwhile for anybody thinking about building out their own cloud. Sessions include:

  • Xen Cloud Platform (yours truly)
  • Delivering IaaS with CloudStack (David Nalley, Apache CloudStack)
  • Automatic Configuration of Your Cloud with Puppet (Kelsey Hightower, Puppet Labs)
  • Proper Instrumentation and Monitoring of CloudStack (Floyd Strimling, Zenoss)
  • Scaling Storage with Ceph (Ross Turk, Inktank)
  • Paving the Way to IT-as-a-Service (Rajesh Ramchandani, CumuLogic)
  • Case Study: Continuous Delivery of a Cloud-Based Service (Pete Erickson, MindTouch)

The events are free, low-key, and there’s a lot of opportunity to ask questions during sessions and afterwards. If you’re still checking out cloud computing, getting ready to do a proof-of-concept, or interested in lessons learned along the way, you should show up.

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Citrix supports the open source community via developer support and evangeslism. We have a number of developers and evangelists that participate actively in the open source community in Apache Cloudstack, OpenDaylight, Xen Project and XenServer. We also conduct educational activities via the Build A Cloud events held all over the world.