It's been a busy month already in the world of the open cloud, not least because of OpenStack's two-year anniversary this week. For those interested in that Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) framework, the OSCON conference includes several sessions on this topic.
OpenStack is by no means the only contender in the open cloud space, however, and rival OpenNebula last week celebrated what may well be an equally significant milestone. Specifically, it launched a fresh new version of its widely used and fully open source cloud platform.
OpenNebula 3.6, which is the twelfth stable release of the platform, offers a raft of new features including virtual machine (VM) rescheduling, new quota and accounting tools, and integration with OpenNebula’s new virtual appliance marketplace, to name just a few.
“This release is focused on stabilizing the features introduced in OpenNebula 3.4, improving the performance of some existing features, and adding new features for virtualization management and integration with the new OpenNebula Marketplace,” wrote Ruben S. Montero, the project's chief architect, in a blog post last week.
Ready for some more specifics? Here's a quick rundown of some of the highlights you'll find in this new release.
1. A New Hotplug Feature
Nicknamed “Lagoon” after the Lagoon Nebula in the constellation Sagittarius, OpenNebula 3.6 includes several new capabilities designed to help manage private clouds based on KVM, Xen, and VMware. A new hotplug mechanism for disk volumes, for instance, supports the attachment of either volatile volumes or existing images to a running virtual machine.
2. Rewritten Tools
Also part of OpenNebula 3.6 are quota and accounting tools that have been completely rewritten and are now included in the OpenNebula core for better integration with the existing AuthZ and AuthN mechanisms as well as other related tools, such as OpenNebula's Sunstone graphical interface.
3. Advanced Capabilities
Further enriching OpenNebula 3.6 are the addition of VM rescheduling, hard reboots, cloning of disk images, and support for per-cluster definition of system data stores.
4. SunStone Improvements
OpenNebula Sunstone, the platform's Cloud Operations Center GUI, has also been improved in this new release with several redesigned tabs, Montero noted. In the platform's OpenNebula Zones component, meanwhile, “we got rid of the data-mapper dependency to ease the packaging of OpenNebula,” he explained.
5. Marketplace Integration
Finally, OpenNebula 3.6 is fully integrated with OpenNebula Marketplace, a new online catalog launched last month that's designed to make it quick and easy for users to find and distribute virtual appliances that are ready to run on OpenNebula clouds. As a result, “any user of an OpenNebula cloud can easily find and deploy appliances in a single click, and any software developer can distribute a new appliance, making it available to all OpenNebula deployments worldwide in few minutes,” the project explains.
With more than 5,000 downloads per month, OpenNebula boasts deployments including CERN, FermiLab, ESA, RIM, China Mobile, Telefonica O2, and KPMG. A certified commercial version with long-term support is also available from C12G Labs, the Madrid-based company behind the project.
OpenNebula 3.6 is a final release intended for production environments, so users of previous versions are advised to upgrade. A full list of the platform's new features is available on the project website, as is a link for downloads.