cs-Europe

CloudStack European User Group roundup – June 2014

For the June meeting of the CloudStack European User Group, we were welcomed back by our old friends Trend Micro. Many thanks to the guys at Trend for letting us use their great facilities.

Our numbers were slightly down from usual, with quite a few last minute cancellations: it’s a little frustrating as we had 12 people who were on the waitinig list and were unable to come because somebody else had booked their place

As usual, I started the day off with a welcome and some news on all things CloudStack.

Since we last met, much work has been going on around the 4.4 (and 4.3.1) releases of CloudStack which means that there isn’t a lot of headline news.

I reported back on the successful CloudStack Collaboration conference in April (Denver) and encouraged people to get along to the European conference, Budapest 19-22 November.

Cloudstack contunies to have ongoing awareness problems. Despite being the most widely adoped, production grade IaaS platform around ,not enough people are aware of it. There is currently a drive to change this and the first signs of that drive can be seen in the list of known CloudStack users and the adoption survey recently launched by the project. If you are using cloudstack, please take the survey to provide feedback and allow us to change these perception issues.

The first guest speaker for the meeting was Antoine Coetsier of Exoscale. Antoine talked us through how Exoscale have used Cloudstack to underpin their highly successful public IaaS offering. Exoscale offer an “amazon like” cloud service and have developed a strong business through their ability to offer VM’s based in Switzerland (and those great privacy laws they have over there) and also by putting emphasis on a public IaaS offering that is very “developer focussed”. Its great to see Exoscale doing so well and knowing that its all driven by CloudStack. 

Next up was Geoff Higginbottom of ShapeBlue (known as “Cloud stig” to his friends). Geoff has amazed us previously with his hugely detailed knowledge of CloudStacks architecture, particularly the networking model. For this talk, Geoff changed direction and decided to give some general advice on designing production environments based on CloudStack.

Geoff has personally designed 47 productions environments across service provider and enterprise use-cases – all based on CloudStack- and it was great to hear him impart the key design decisions and lessons learnt from his vast experience.

I had one very clear take away from Geoffs talk: he finished off with a slide showing an expression we use a lot in the ShapeBlue office “design for tomorrow, build for today”. In my opinion, this sums up the approach that should be taken to build successful cloud. Anybody can throw a large amount of infrastructure into a datacentre, orchestrate it and call it a cloud – but if the scale is too large initially, the ROI will not be there. So, build small, but make sure your design gives to rapid and easy scale when its required.

After Geoff, Donal Lafferty from Citrix talked us through the architecture of the Citrix Xenapp and CloudStack integration. This integration allows the seamless provisioning of desktops in the cloud and enables Desktop as a Service.

From my perspective, its great to see Citrix (finally) get this integration in place. Like many people, I had been hoping that Citrix would get CloudStack and their core products integrated much sooner as it is surely key to their ongoing involvement in CloudStack

Next up were Andrew Kennedy and Sam Corbett from CloudSoft with a talk titled “Clocker – Creating a Docker Cloud with Apache Brooklyn”

Apache Brooklyn has recently entered the Apache Software Foundation incubator and offers deployment and runtime management of applications (and it works well with CloudStack). CloudSoft were the originators of Brooklyn and its great to see them moving the technology into ASF. The guys talked about some work they’ve been doing recently on a new project called Clocker which pulls together elements of Brooklyn, Docker and JClouds.

The last speaker of the day was Samuel Bercovici from Radware. Radware provide advanced load balancing and DDoS solutions and came to the CloudStack user group to judge whether CloudStack users would be interested in working with them to enable LBaaS.

There was much discussion in the room about CloudStack’s virtual router and how it currently provides load balancing. There seemed to be much interest amongst the audience in being able to replace that with RadWare’s offerings and we hope to see Samuel and his team get some integration in place.

The next meeting of the group will be in September 2014, exact date and venue TBC