ATLANTA. The open source OpenStack cloud platform is not a hobbyist project, it's a technology platform that is powering major brands today. That's the message coming loud and clear from the OpenStack Summit here in Atlanta.
During a keynote address, Mark Collier, Chief Operating Officer of the OpenStack Foundation, noted that since OpenStack was first created in 2010 there have been nine releases. The very first OpenStack release was codenamed Austin and the barrier to entry for submitting code to it wasn't very high.
"What it took to be in the Austin release is you just had to be able to spell Austin," Collier joked. "Four years and nine releases later, there are now 10 key components in the integrated release and it's not just a bucket of parts."
Collier noted that testing has really ramped up as well, with over 50 external testing system deployed for the recent Icehouse release. In contrast for the OpenStack Havana release in 2013, there were only two testing systems.
There is more interest in OpenStack now than ever before for a number of different reasons.
"It has a lot to do with the massive transformation going in the entire economy and there is a revolution going on and every company has to move faster," Collier said. "Speed is the name of the game."
AT&T is one of the companies that joined Collier on stage to discuss why OpenStack matters. Toby Ford, AVP for IT Operations Strategic Realization at AT&T, said that when he first started with the company, open source technology use was mostly forbidden. That's no longer the case today.
"OpenStack is a proxy that has allowed us to get innovation into AT&T and it gives us an ecosystem that we can contribute into," Ford said.
AT&T has been using OpenStack since 2010 and today has approximately 120 application running on the platform. Originally the OpenStack deployment was in three data centers but it has since expanded to seven data centers with plans to add three more by the end of the year.
For AT&T, OpenStack provides a platform for agility and it might also serve as a gateway to Network Function Virtualization (NFV). Ford said that OpenStack is well positioned to handle NFV workloads.
Joel Johnston, Platform Architect, Global Hosting, Sony Computer Entertainment America also joined Collier on stage to talk about his company's experience with OpenStack. Sony uses OpenStack as its back-end platform that hosts software for connecting players online, provides stats, leaderboard and social media integration.
Collier commented that we're now all living in a time when there is more disruption then ever before.
"Software is eating the world," Collier said. "In today's race faster wins - everything else is a rounding error."
Mark Collier, Chief Operating Officer, OpenStack Foundation
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Datamation and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist
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