OpenStack Serves Up Havana


New release of the free cloud platform offers better usability and a new template-driven service.

The OpenStack project has released 2013.2 , code named Havana. The latest version of the free software solution for Infrastructure as a Service cloud architectures (IaaS) reflects an awareness of increased competition from VMware and Microsoft, with better usability and a newfound focus on responding to user feedback.

New features of the latest release include OpenStack Orchestration, which the OpenStack project describes as "...a template-driven service for describing and automating the deployment of compute, storage, and networking resources for an application." According to Mark Collier of the OpenStack Foundation, the new Orchestration feature (code-named Heat) is a user-driven addition. "Companies are developing applications to be more cloud-aware, and we want to do this, specifically, with a templating language that will let the application tell the cloud what the app needs in storage and servers."

The latest version also comes with improvements to the user interface and new features for controlling the cloud environment through the OpenStack dashboard. The new OpenStack Metering feature provides a single source for monitoring usage data across OpenStack services.

According to the OpenStack project, the new release includes "...nearly 400 new features to support softare development, manage data, and run application infrastructure at scale." OpenStack seems especially proud of the growth of its development community. 910 contributors participated in the Havana release -- a 70% increase from the previous release six months ago.


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