In our last post, we demonstrated that open-source cloud computing is mature and reaching enterprise-wide adoption. Which helps us dispel the myth that there is a lack of support in the open-source community.
This myth is not one taken lightly. The fear of receiving adequate support is one of the reasons some companies choose to avoid using open source for critical business applications. They would prefer to have experts within a commercial software company deliver whatever support they need around the clock, seeing this as a key benefit of deploying commercial software that’s not part of an open-source project.
However, you’ll often find the community around open-source projects, as well as from vendors, is dedicated to participating in the deployment and support effort. Enterprises that choose to create open-source clouds find they can rely on this community, whose members are committed and actively responsive to users’ ongoing needs.
OpenStack technology is a good example of an open-source cloud initiative that offers a variety of support options. The project is a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technology experts who are producing open standard cloud computing platforms for both public and private clouds. It’s one of the fastest-growing cloud-computing open-source projects, and is gaining recognition for interoperability and enterprise-grade functionality.
OpenStack is backed by an involved community of developers, as well as leading vendors including HP, IBM, Intel, RedHat, Rackspace and AT&T. The project’s website features a portal with links to user groups around the world.
Companies looking for commercial support can choose from different OpenStack-based products and services in the online marketplace. A wide variety of vendors with OpenStack-based offerings provide end-user support. For example, HP has developed a specific professional services practice aimed at helping enterprises deploy OpenStack technology–based clouds and offering expertise.
The company’s Helion OpenStack Professional Services are provided by an experienced team of architects and cloud technologists, and backed by hundreds of engineers who run one of the world’s largest OpenStack public clouds — HP Helion Public Cloud — and who have committed thousands of lines of code, reviews, testing and training to the OpenStack community.
The vendor offers its expertise in design, storage, network, security, database, scalability, high-availability and other OpenStack-based services. And services run the gamut from OpenStack technology assessment to design and implementation, to ongoing lifecycle management of cloud deployments and continuous integration and support.
A number of other open-source cloud projects, including Cloud Foundry, OpenDaylight, KVM and Eucalyptus, feature commercial support from vendors, as well as from development communities.
Before dismissing open-source cloud projects out of concerns around product support, check out a related forum or online community to glimpse at how committed they are to supporting and enhancing the open-source experience.