Eucalyptus Gets High-Availability Protection

Version 3.0 of the Eucalyptus cloud platform will be the first to feature high-availability functionality

Further preparing its software for production use, Eucalyptus Systems has outfitted its private cloud software with the ability to keep running even if an individual node fails, a feature called high availability (HA), the company announced Wednesday.

"If something fails, the software will put other nodes into use immediately, and your operation will not be interrupted," said Marten Mickos, Eucalyptus Systems CEO. "Even if you have an entire rack that crashes, we can move [the workload] to another rack."

Eucalyptus 3, a preview of which will be available within the next 30 days, also comes with enhanced resource access controls (RAC) as well, which should provide more precise tracking of, and billing for, cloud resources.

Developed by a University of California researcher with funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation, Eucalyptus is a cloud platform that duplicates the Amazon Web Services API (application programming interface). Eucalyptus Systems provides an enterprise version of the software with additional proprietary management features, though the company also shepherds the development of the open-source core of the program. More than 25,000 organizations and individuals have used Eucalyptus software thus far, the company estimated.

With the new HA architecture, a system may continue to run a cloud service if some hardware component of the system stops working, due to disk failure, memory corruption, power outage or some other problem. Each instance of the cloud is replicated on another server, and this standby server will resume operations should the primary server fail. The software monitors the health of each node and can automatically switch over operations should a node or set of nodes stop responding.

The updated RAC capabilities implement Amazon Web Services' Identity and Access Management (IAM) API, which provides a way to monitor and control usage of users or groups. It can also deploy user group and user profiles from Microsoft Active Directory and other LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol)-based user directories. Eucalyptus has also supplied the new version with a number of new reporting tools, which should help formulate billing statements.

Eucalyptus plans to release the final version of the software by the end of the year.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

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