Harnessing the power of the ‘Four Opens’

Harnessing the power of the ‘Four Opens’

Harnessing the power of the ‘Four Opens’
OpenStack is a massive and growing open source community, with thousands of contributors from hundreds of organizations serving over 60,000 members. While it’s always exciting to see the numbers grow, what really makes OpenStack unique are the individuals themselves and the method by which we collaborate.

But before I get into how we collaborate, I wanted to touch on why we’re collaborating. We fight for the users, of course, who are tackling new markets like network functions virtualization (NFV), bio and physics research, financial services, and healthcare. They want to route your phone calls and power your web apps and deliver your packets on time. And they all want a seat at the table.

To power the next generation of these industries we’ve got to push the boundaries, making OpenStack the most versatile and reliable cloud platform on the planet. We need to support diverse networking models, for example, playing the role of integration engine to bridge the old and new. A vision this ambitious simply can’t be tackled by one company, country or person.

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One such feature, longed for by the titans of telecom for the past few OpenStack releases, is called VLAN-aware VMs. This critical feature will allow companies to run their existing virtual network functions (VNFs) in an OpenStack cloud and use per-tenant VLANs to get traffic to them.

This feature is finally here in Newton. Many different aspects of OpenStack had to evolve to support this use case, from command line clients to agents, from the data model to the database layer, the community itself and, finally, with the Neutron server. In total, more than 50 people from 20 organizations in 15 countries wrote and reviewed the code that made this possible.

Let that sink in for a moment.

One feature. More than 50 people. 20 organizations. 15 countries.

Still not getting it? Here’s a map:

If you’re used to open source communities dominated by one vendor, this may come as a shock to you. We do things a little differently in OpenStack. No surprise announcements from the stage of a new feature that was secretly designed and developed by one company.

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We do it in the open. Not just the source code, all of it.

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