Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Sunday, September 24, 2023

OpenStack Readies Newton as Mitaka Releases Arrive 

As more vendors unveil their enterprise-grade distributions of OpenStack Mitaka released in the spring, developers are already preparing the launch of the new OpenStack upgrade dubbed Newton.

Several vendors including Red Hat and OpenStack cofounder Rackspace (NYSE: RAX) have released cloud distributions based on Mitaka. Rackspace said Monday (Sept. 12) its private cloud based on the latest release is a "managed services" platform rather than just a software distribution since it leverages a reference architecture based on the OpenStack-Ansible project designed to provide "security hardening" for the open-source cloud platform.

In a white paper, Rackspace emphasized the tradeoffs related to applying security configurations and possible performance and availability issues in production environments.

OpenStack Mitaka debuted in April as the 13th release of the cloud deployment infrastructure. Red Hat (NYSE: RHT) released its OpenStack Platform 9 based on the Mitaka release last month. The cloud platform integrates Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.2 along with Ceph Storage 2 and the company's CloudForms tool for managing hybrid clouds.

Rackspace and other members of the Open Compute Project said last month they would intensify efforts to validate the latest OpenStack-based platforms running on environments ranging from application containers to hybrid clouds.

Meanwhile, OpenStack Newton is scheduled for release during the first week of October. Among the enhancements expected in the Newton release are implementing new services that would on-demand access to Cinder block storage resources. Cinder provides block storage for virtual machines as well as application containers.

(The Mitaka release also updates storage features for Cinder block storage along with OpenStack Swift object storage. Mitaka also offered a public cloud option for back end block storage.)

Others upgrades, developers noted, include improved troubleshooting capabilities for extending the roll out of the OpenStack networking project called Neutron and deploying Neutron more widely in existing datacenter networks, developers said.

Rackspace, which announced in August it was being acquired by a group of investors that will take the vendor private, has led the push to boost enterprise adoption of OpenStack in more datacenters with the release of its managed private cloud service earlier this year. One goal is helping more enterprises run OpenStack private clouds in their datacenters without the operational hassles. The offering also addressed complaints that OpenStack has so far proven difficult to implement.

Rackspace CTO John Engates noted that the new service "extends OpenStack and our managed services capabilities on the private cloud side beyond the walls of a Rackspace datacenter into…customer-premises facilities."

About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).