The Red Hat version of the OpenStack is a separate edition of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) platform that has been customized and optimized for deployment of the open-source OpenStack cloud platform. Red Hat had initially intended to provide an OpenStack solution that would then run on top of existing RHEL deployments, but changed course in June and announced an integrated solution.
The Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform had its first public release in July and was based on the OpenStack Grizzly platform. The new Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 4.0 release is based on the updated OpenStack Havana platform that debuted in October.
The Havana release includes a number of key new features that Red Hat's edition supports. Among the new Havana features is the Heat Orchestration system, which enables cloud administrators to rapidly deploy and scale cloud applications. Havana also includes the Ceilometer monitoring solution, which will enable Red Hat's users to more effective meter cloud usage and services.
Going beyond the standard components that are part of the core OpenStack Havana release, Red Hat is also including the open-source Foreman lifecycle management solution that can work for both virtual and physical infrastructure components.
Management is further enabled by way of integration with the Red Hat CloudForms solution. CloudForms enables enterprises to manage multiple sets of cloud resources.
Red Hat is also integrating the OpenStack Platform 4.0 release with its Gluster-based Storage Server. Gluster is an open-source storage file system technology that has commercial support from Red Hat. At the core of the solution is an optimized version of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5 (RHEL) release that debuted at the end of November. The OpenStack optimizations in RHEL include Linux kernel and virtual switch components that are needed for cloud deployments.
Red Hat is an active member of the OpenStack community, as are all of its primary Linux rivals, including SUSE Linux and Ubuntu Linux. While there are lots of competitive options in the OpenStack market, the opportunity for vendors in the OpenStack space is growing and real money is being made.
According to a recent report from 451 Research, OpenStack-related business activities are on track to generate $600 million in revenue in 2013, growing to more than $1 billion by 2015.
Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at eWEEK and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.