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OpenNebula 2010: A Year of Innovation in Cloud Computing

A Review of 2010

This year has seen some great progress for the OpenNebula project, with the release of the most advanced and flexible enterprise-ready cloud management tool, and the continued growth of an active and engaged open-source community. As 2010 draws to and end, we'd like to review what this year has meant for the OpenNebula project and give you a peek at what you can expect from us in 2011.

Orion Release
After a first Beta release in July, the stable version of OpenNebula 2.0 was available for download in October. OpenNebula 2.0 marked the end of a large and laborious release cycle and an important milestone for the project in terms of functionality, maturity and community engagement. Besides many exciting new features for your Cloud and an improved scalability and robustness, this release also marked the start of a new add-on section for high-quality, third-party open-source components. OpenNebula 2.0 is targeted at production environments, including integration, management, scalability, security and accounting features that many enterprise IT shops need for private and hybrid cloud adoption. We're delighted with the response from our community. Besides the huge spike in downloads, we have received many congratulations over email and Twitter from many of our users, specially those who are deploying OpenNebula in very large infrastructures

OpenNebula Quality Assurance
As part of the OpenNebula Orion release in October we also opened our internal QA & testing  procedures to the community.

OpenNebula QA is the part of the OpenNebula project which covers all testing of the software that makes up an OpenNebula release. Its goal is to assure the stability and quality of the OpenNebula releases and updates. Testing & QA of a cloud management tool was particularly challenging as it requires to verify the integration of multiple software components, from different hypervisors and storage architectures to operating systems and DB backends

Innovative, Groundbreaking Projects in Cloud Computing
During 2010, we were very happy to announce that OpenNebula is being enhanced in several flagship international projects in cloud computing, such as StratusLab, aimed at bringing cloud and virtualization to grid computing infrastructures; BonFIRE, aimed at designing, building and operating a multi-site cloud-based facility to support research across applications, services and systems targeting services research community on Future Internet; and 4CaaSt, aimed at creating an advanced PaaS Cloud platform which supports the optimized and elastic hosting of Internet-scale multi-tier applications.

These collaborations with world-leading industrial and academic organisations in cloud computing consolidated OpenNebula's position at the cutting edge of cloud computing technology worldwide. We have also continued our  collaboration with the most demanding users of cloud computing management tools that are using OpenNebula to manage several tens of thousands of virtual machines.

Community
This is a very good opportunity to acknowledge our active and engaged community, if OpenNebula has gotten so far, it is in no small measure due to the many users and organizations in our community who have actively contributed to the project.

In February, we created a new OpenNebula.org site, a new place for the community to share resources, contribute developments and discuss about components and solutions around OpenNebula. We defined the different ways to contribute, from using the technology and spreading the word to contributing fixes and developing new functionality. We also established theOpenNebula Ecosystem in order to promote the different tools, extensions and plug-ins that are available to complement OpenNebula from a wide variety of projects, companies, and research centers. Many new useful components by leading companies and research groups have been added to the ecosystem catalog.

The first edition of the OpenNebula Technology Days took place in Madrid in July. The event was attended by several partners that actively use OpenNebula as their core toolkit to build clouds. All in all, it turned out to be a successful and very formative event.

This year OpenNebula was selected as a Google Summer of Code (GSoC) mentoring organization. We were very excited about this great opportunity to work with very talented and motivated students. During the summer, our students were part of our community and had the opportunity to learn the basics of virtualization, cloud computing and OpenNebula.

During 2010, OpenNebula presented 30 keynotes, invited talks and tutorials in the main international events in cloud computing in 15 different countries. We have also continued and started collaborations with the main open source efforts and standards bodies.

In May 2010, C12G Labs was created to provide the professional integration, certification and technical support that many enterprise IT shops require for internal adoption. OpenNebula.org is a project now managed by C12G Labs. This did not and will not change any of the objectives and core values of the project. C12G contributes to the long term sustainability of the project and is committed to maintain a fully open source technology and to enlarge the OpenNebula community .

About 2011
In line with our aim to develop the most-advanced, highly-scalable and adaptable software toolkit for cloud computing management, we are working hard on new features that will be available in the following months. Several exciting features are in our short term roadmap: an operations network to simplify the management of OpenNebula cloud instances, fault tolerance functionality to maximize uptime in your cloud, enhanced management of images and templates, new security functionality, enhanced support for federation of data centers and support for multi-tier architectures. Our goal is to get stable releases out more often so users can see progress more often, and our current plan is to have a three-month release cycle. These releases will concentrate on a new "big" feature and a collection of bug fixes and minor features. As a whole we think this will give a greatly improved user experience.

In few days we will also announce the second edition of the OpenNebula Technology Days that will be organized in Brussels at the end of January, our participation in new large innovative projects, and our collaboration with leading IT companies in open-source and innovation in cloud computing management.

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If OpenNebula has become such a successful open source project, it is largely thanks in no small part to its community. We really appreciate your help in maintain OpenNebula's position as the leading and most advanced open-source technology to build cloud infrastructures. As always, we appreciate our users feedback and welcome your comments on everything. The team will be monitoring this post for the next weeks or so and will try and answer all the questions we can.

We'd also like to take this opportunity to wish you health, happiness and prosperity in 2011 to you and your loved ones!

On behalf of the OpenNebula project.

More Stories By Ignacio M. Llorente

Dr. Llorente is Director of the OpenNebula Project and CEO & co-founder at C12G Labs. He is an entrepreneur and researcher in the field of cloud and distributed computing, having managed several international projects and initiatives on Cloud Computing, and authored many articles in the leading journals and proceedings books. Dr. Llorente is one of the pioneers and world's leading authorities on Cloud Computing. He has held several appointments as independent expert and consultant for the European Commission and several companies and national governments. He has given many keynotes and invited talks in the main international events in cloud computing, has served on several Groups of Experts on Cloud Computing convened by international organizations, such as the European Commission and the World Economic Forum, and has contributed to several Cloud Computing panels and roadmaps. He founded and co-chaired the Open Grid Forum Working Group on Open Cloud Computing Interface, and has participated in the main European projects in Cloud Computing. Llorente holds a Ph.D in Computer Science (UCM) and an Executive MBA (IE Business School), and is a Full Professor (Catedratico) and the Head of the Distributed Systems Architecture Group at UCM.