OpenStack : A New Architecture and Platform for Cloud computing


OpenStack is free and open source platform for cloud computing mostly deployed as Infrastructure-as-a-Service (Iaas). It is a cloud operating system which controls huge amount of data or network resources through a datacenter which is managed by Dashboard or open stack API. Before going further, it is very important to understand both cloud computing and IaaS. Cloud in broader sense refers to a host where you can keep your information and data safe as well as secure. It provides the benefit of accessing data from anywhere and anytime via internet. Computing refers to process of managing, processing and analysis of data. Combining cloud and computing both, it refers to delivery of computing services over the internet. On the basis of location cloud can be public, private, hybrid and community whereas on basis of services it is either Infrastructure-as-a-Service (Iaas), Platform-as-a-Service (Paas) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). Since OpenStack uses IaaS, it is important to understand these terms.

  • Infrastructure-as-a-Service: It is offering physical computers and virtual machines. Examples for such are Amazon EC2 instance, Rackspace and Flexiscale.

  • Platform-as-a-Service: It provides platform for the end user to develop, run and manage applications without building and maintaining infrastructure. Examples for such are Google App Engine, Microsoft Azure.

  • Software-as-a-Service: In this third party host the application and made it available to end users over the internet. Examples for such are Gmail, Google Docs, Netsuite and Salesforce. Please refer to the Figure 1 for more details.

Types of cloud on basis of services

Figure 1: Types of cloud on basis of services

OpenStack Architecture: It has client server architecture which provides REST API to the users. Following is the architecture of OpenStack Glance. Glance is a OpenStack Image Service for providing discovery, registration and delivery service for disk and server images.

  • A Client: It is an application which makes use of glance server.

  • Rest API: Using this client handles the front end and server handles the backend and no client data is stored on the server between the requests. It has also features of cache response to improve the performance.

  • Database Abstraction Layer: It is an API that blends the communication between glance and database.

  • Glance Domain Controller: It manages internal server operations. There is a division of different layers for handling different task.

  • Glance Store: It is managing and organising interaction between domain and Database Abstraction Layer.

  • Registry Layer: It is used for secure communication between domain and Database Abstraction Layer. Please refer to Figure 2 for more details.

Different components of Open Stack Glance
Different components of Open Stack Glance

Figure 2: Different components of Open Stack Glance

OpenStack Companies and Applications:

  • Rackspace: Rackspace is also called OpenStack founding father. Introducing briefly, company started OpenStack along with NASA in 2010. Company used it as a base for creating its public cloud. Rackspace public cloud is one of the robust clouds.

  • Red Hat: Red Hat has its own distribution of OpenStack which it has integrated with its flagship product called Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack (RHEL).

  • Dell: Dell holds some important leadership positions in OpenStack. Rackspace is dell public cloud partner so it relies high on OpenStack to provide reliable service to customers.

  • HP: Public and private cloud is leveraging OpenStack. It is focussing on hybrid cloud based on OpenStack and is considered as one of the big vendors in the Open Stack community.

  • IBM: Since almost all people rely on cloud for storing their data as well cloud computing provides reliable and secure solutions to end user IBM is also doing best to serve end user in the best possible way. It is shifting towards OpenStack for providing cloud services. It is working to provide quality service, hence aligning OpenStack API to meet such standards.

  • Cisco: OpenStack is an open source technology and hence it is compatible with most of hardware. Such lies true for Cisco hardware. Cisco is the leading networking and routing service provider and uses OpenStack to enhance better experience for end user. It has recently announced Intercloud which will be collaborated with OpenStack.

  • Canonical: Canonical like Red Hat leveraged OpenStack. Ubuntu is canonical operating system and is one of the leading operating system for OpenStack deployment.

  • Nebula: Nebula has integrated both the hardware and software with OpenStack.

  • VMware: It is interesting to note that how VMware is using OpenStack because both are providing the same technology whereas OpenStack is free and hence threat to the VMware. It has created tools for the customers to manage their OpenStack Cloud such as ESX hypervisor.

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In a nutshell, it won’t be wrong to say that today is the era of cloud and companies are looking for platform to host their public and private cloud. Companies like IBM, Canonical and Red Hat has been earning good profit using OpenStack technology. Considering today’s’ scenario Rackspace has become leading company in public cloud. Cloud computing has eased life and it makes it possible to access ones data from anywhere and anytime with the aid of cloud an internet. Research is going on daily basis to increase the security of cloud for data safeguard.

Today Amazon is gaining huge profit from Infrastructure-as-a-Service and same is true for other giant companies. Rest API’s are becoming popular day by day. There is more research and innovation yet to be done to increase user experience with respect to technology and OpenStack is working to meet such standard and vision.

Authors Bio:

Sanpreet Singh is a passionate writer, blogger and developer. I write on technology topics, trending topics and such areas which benefits society in some aspects. I believe It is important for author to write such worthful articles which helps readers to gain something out of it. You can also visit my site to know me more


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