One of the key themes that came out of the first SUSEcon in Orlando last year was that cloud computing is not easy.
That may seem like a bit of a non sequitor coming from a company that’s making a big effort to promote cloud computing to its customers, but let’s not kid ourselves: as cutting edge as the engineering is within a project like OpenStack, there’s the very real fact that right now, you can’t just download this software and run it.
We’re pretty excited to be working with vendors like Dell, whose Crowbar cloud operations framework will alleviate the complications of installing, configuring, and operating SUSE Cloud solutions. Crowbar takes the best parts of open source configuration management technology, like Chef and Puppet, to build a complete “CloudOps” package, according to Greg Althaus, Dell Principal Engineer and Crowbar Co-Founder.
Solutions like Crowbar mean more than just ease-of-use for our customers, though that’s a pretty good deal. It also reflects a growing trend that we will see more of in the coming new year that will see new technologies from all over the cloud computing sector aimed at getting the complicated aspects of cloud under control.
This is a problem that cries out for a real solution. Every day we read stories about how public clouds are brought down by customer error, or how poor configuration can enable hackers to pilfer key identity information from a cloud-hosted service that can then be used to attack the corporate network.
The goal at SUSE has always been to make cloud computing simpler to manage. After all, the underlying SUSE Linux Enterprise Server operating system layer already takes a lot of the headaches away for security and ease of application development, and the way we’re building the SUSE Cloud based on OpenStack just continues that core philosophy.
We know a lot of CIOs are looking at cloud-based solutions, both private and hybrid, as something their organization can use. In these early days, it’s normal to expect some complications, but as SUSE moves into 2013, we’ll be working to smooth the path to cloud computing.