HP vs AWS : An open source battle for two worlds | #OEForum

william-l-franklin

The OpenStack Enterprise Forum, centered on deploying OpenStack in the next generation data center, took place on January 29, 2014 at Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California.

theCUBE co-hosts, John Furrier and Dave Vellante, sat down with William Franklin, Vice President of OpenStack & Technology Enablement and Cloud with Hewlett-Packard Company, discussing what makes OpenStack such a big focal point at this moment.

Why support OpenStack?

 

“Why is the interest so high in OpenStack and what was the hardest question you received on stage?” asked Furrier.

“I think the interest is so high because OpenStack is the fastest growing open source project in the history of open source. Cloud computing is the third revolution of computing; we’ve started with mainframes, we moved into client server, and now we’re moving into this third revolution of cloud computing. It’s the perfect storm of rapidly adopted open source project in the middle of this transformation. I don’t think the questions were necessarily all that hard; HP is right in the middle of trying to deliver the hybrid cloud solutions and a lot of customers have a lot of questions.”

“In the early days of cloud, in 2008 and 2009, it was pretty obvious what needed to be done,” recounted Furrier. “Where do you think we are now with cloud for business? Are we at full adoption, full migration?”

  • Making the enterprise look more like the public cloud

“As other participants on the Panel today have talked about, we are now at a stage where you see strategic adoption by a lot of the customers. During the early days everybody assumed it was going to be a public cloud, but for reasons relating to compliance and security, enterprises are looking at private clouds and managed service clouds, public clouds, and companies have to deal with managing their clouds, how do they upgrade it, how do they protect it – the whole lifecycle of the product.”

“Amazon is like the gold stamp of public cloud,” stated Furrier. “They have the full stack, they’re launching new products every day and you have to compete with that. But enterprise is just a different animal. Amazon has some enterprise customers, but it’s mostly shadow IT, but HP is an enterprise company: you have servers, you have Jim Ganthier, Antonio Neri, Open Compute… Is Amazon a threat?” asked Furrier.

HP vs. AWS : two worlds collide

 

“Fundamentally we believe that those enterprises are going to be building hybrid clouds and that’s private, managed and public. We have solutions for customers from different product organizations at HP – software, servers, services, storage, hardware, that allow those enterprises to build hybrid clouds. If they’re bursting to Amazon, or to the HP public cloud, or they’re using managed services that are provided by HP’s services organization, we’re trying to take OpenStack and other solutions, bring it to the market to give them business solutions.”

“How has the definition of ‘open’ changed in the last 20+ years and what does it mean for customers?” asked Vellante.

“Every six months the OpenStack community gets together – and HP is one of the platinum members – and anybody can show up. We talk about how can we advance the product, if we’re going to make any changes to the APIs, and how we’re going to do that – as a complete community. Enterprise customers who purchased this have the same right to play as the tiny startups or the huge corporations like HP. From OpenStack’s perspective, standardizing on one set of APIs that are delivered and controlled by Amazon, means that the OpenStack community has no ability to discuss that. The comment that I made about HO is that we’re watching this play out, and seeing where it leads. We might see one day Amazon adopting the OpenStack APIs.”

“The theme of this event is ‘breaking into the enterprise’,” noted Vellante. “Amazon is good for a lot of clients for a lot of applications but a lot of your clients need more.”

“There’s a lot of areas where there’s a ‘white space’. There’s the block storage piece, Amazon has the load ballancing, and OpenStack is trying to fill some of those places out, but I think, despite Amazon being a fantastic public cloud, there are use-cases where customers do not want or can’t use a public cloud,” said Franklin. “There’s no answer from Amazon as to how they do that, how do enterprises build this private cloud. Most customers use public clouds for some things but there are a bunch of things they want to keep in-house, either for legislative reasons or for data sovereignity or security reasons. We’re trying to fill that need.”

“We’re basically giving a customer the ability to deliver the business solutions they need. The way you configure the security is up to how you want it structured at. At the end, technology is there to serve business needs. Our customers set it up to solve business needs. We want to deliver those solutions.”

Cloud culture : The third revolution

 

Rounding up the comments received via Twitter and CrowdChat, Furrier asked William Franklin to talk about culture (organizations do not understand cloud), Ops, support configurations and standardization.

“As I mentioned earlier, this is the third revolution of computing. The move from mainframe to client server didn’t happen overnight. Some of the questions asked today by customers – there’s different skillsets that are needed, different operational disciplines, different management. What HP is trying to do is deliver products that provide solutions to that set of problems. We don’t believe customers are going to move all of their workloads to the cloud tomorrow; it’s going to run in a client-server world and in the cloud. The solutions to be able to do that from an orchestration problem, you have to be able to deal with development, staging, production and the traditional client-server world, and you have to be able to deal with the DevOps paradigm. We build products to live in both of those worlds.”

“On the standardization of the clouds, does it bother you that OpenStack’s been criticized? We have folks that say that not one cloud looks like the other,” said Furrier. “Is this normal?”

“I think in this stage of development where OpenStack was a year ago and where it’s moving, you had different people who implemented or stood up OpenStack in different ways and, to some degree, it was a trouble migrating things from one thing to another. Inside OpenStack there’s an effort trying to come up with a core definition that makes it really easy for customers to move from one place to another. This looks a lot like what Linux and Unix did in the early days.”

“Linux disrupted a lot of those proprietary server vendors,” agreed Furrier, “and now there’s all this Open Compute. These are interesting times. What is HP’s current situation relative to OpenStack? How committed are you to it?”

“For the last release of OpenStack there were roughly 900 developers from around the world that contributed code to it. Almost 10 percent of those work with HP. We are the project technical lead for TripleO and other key projects and we have people scattered around different core teams. We work on the continuous integration deployment project and we spend a lot of time talking to other HP customers about it and that drives where we work. We work on SDN network virtualization space and in the security space. All of these are key to the enterprise customers,” clarified Franklin.