By Jennifer LeClaire / CIO Today. Updated December 11, 2013.
In a move that makes some industry analysts wonder what took it so long, Oracle has signed on as a corporate sponsor of the OpenStack Foundation. The company’s stated goal is to make it possible for customers to use OpenStack to manage Oracle technology-based clouds, fully leveraging the stability, efficiency, performance, scalability and security of these Oracle products.
With that in mind, the tech titan is planning to integrate OpenStack cloud management components into Oracle Solaris, Oracle Linux, Oracle VM, Oracle Virtual Compute Appliance, Oracle Infrastructure as a Service, Oracle’s ZS3 Series, Axiom storage systems and StorageTek tape systems. Oracle is also working to achieve OpenStack compatibility with Oracle Exalogic Elastic Cloud, Oracle Compute Cloud Service and Oracle Storage Cloud Service.
“We understand our customers need to have common management interfaces, rather than being locked into proprietary ones. OpenStack allows them to do that, both for more traditional general-purpose IaaS environments, as well as our Oracle Engineered Systems,” said Markus Flierl, vice president of Oracle Solaris. “OpenStack integration means they can also use the same OpenStack APIs to manage their mission-critical Oracle Solaris and Oracle's SPARC T5 and M6 systems, as well as their Oracle Linux and Oracle VM environments.”
Common Cloud Management
Oracle Solaris and Oracle Linux provide security, performance, scalability and observability for cloud-based deployments, allowing customers to run enterprise applications in private or public clouds. Integration with OpenStack will allow customers to integrate Oracle Solaris Zones and Oracle VM environments with other OpenStack platforms.
“By integrating OpenStack with Oracle Solaris,” Flierl said, “we can allow customers to use OpenStack as a common cloud management infrastructure across Oracle SPARC and x86 systems as well as our storage products.”
Oracle is planning to provide Oracle Compute Cloud Service compatibility with OpenStack Nova and offering highly available, secure and flexible virtual machine instances to which Oracle Virtual Assembly Builder assemblies and Oracle VM Templates may be deployed.
What Took So Long?
We caught up with Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst at ZK Research, to get his take on Oracle joining OpenStack. Given the momentum behind OpenStack and software-defined networks, he told us he’s surprised that Oracle hasn’t come out with a strategy sooner.
“Clearly, the data center is becoming the most competitive battles in IT today and Oracle is one of the premier players in the data center,” he said. “Oracle’s absence in the OpenStack Alliance was conspicuous.”
Kerravala said joining OpenStack Foundation allows Oracle to interoperate with other vendors that support OpenStack. As he sees it, Oracle must find ways to work with some of these vendors and has shown its willingness to do so through its partnership with SAP and Microsoft in the past.
“If you believe that we’re heading toward a world of interconnected clouds, which I think Oracle does, then something has to connects those clouds, and many view OpenStack as the solution to that problem,” he concluded.