August 12, 2015

LinuxCon Preview: Q&A with SUSE’s Michael Miller

suse-logo-2As a preview of next week’s LinuxCon in Seattle, we asked keynote speaker Michael Miller of SUSE to answer some questions about openness in IT infrastructure and what it means for Linux and SUSE.

For more from Michael Miller, check out his keynote presentation at LinuxCon, “Open Source Code: It's in our DNA,” in which he will talk about open source, the progress that has been made, and why now is the perfect time to be building the future of open source together.

Linux.com: What does being open mean in IT infrastructure?

Michael Miller: Openness in IT infrastructure is about so much more than simply the availability of source code. Being Open Source is, to be sure, a huge boon for any organization in so many ways, including stability and security. But being truly "Open" runs even deeper. It means having server management tools that work well with systems from multiple vendors. It means having your choice from a wide array of virtual machine hypervisors. It means avoiding vendor lock-in. That's what being Open means.

Linux.com: What does it mean to be open by design?

Michael Miller: Being open shouldn't be an afterthought. All those things I just mentioned - Open Standards, Open Source, choice of systems, freedom from lock-in - should be baked in to every project. Right from the start. This is not only the right thing to do, but absolutely critical for any organization looking to keep their IT departments running smoothly and efficiently into the future.

Linux.com: How is SUSE adapting to this new model of collaboration in IT?

Michael Miller: Adapting is something we're pretty good at. SUSE's motto is, not coincidentally, "We adapt. You succeed." Luckily, SUSE has been building software and systems, with openness in mind, since 1992. This is what we do, it's who we are. Open is in our DNA.

Linux.com: What are some of the main ways that Linux is optimizing workloads on these new open platforms?

Michael Miller: What comes immediately to mind for me is the concept (and now reality) of Linux containers. Though container technology has been in Linux for some years, its only recently that the implementation and tooling has started to align with how people really work. This is a significant change and could result in a fundamental paradigm shift that helps us evolve beyond the traditional concepts of develop, deploy and manage.

Linux.com: Why is open infrastructure more necessary today than ever before?

Michael Miller: Well, first off I have to say that it has always been important. But, that said, with the evolution of more and more software-defined elements in the data center, open is actually becoming even more important. If we replace proprietary systems with software-defined but locked-in stacks we're not progressing. It is critical that we keep the concepts of choice and flexibility in mind as we evolve further towards our (open source) software defined destiny.

MMiller

As Vice President of Global Alliances, Marketing and Product Management for SUSE, Michael Miller is responsible for growing the SUSE business globally through key alliances, innovative marketing and strategic business development. Miller has over 16 years of experience across a broad range of global leadership roles, including senior management positions in engineering, product management, marketing, sales and business development. Miller applies a practical and results-driven approach to building teams, creating alliances and developing solutions for the enterprise market.

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