AMD, Canonical Unveil Bundled OpenStack Cloud Solution

The integrated offering includes Canonical's Ubuntu OS and OpenStack running on AMD's SeaMicro microservers.


Advanced Micro Devices is partnering with Canonical on an integrated solution that is designed to make it easier for organizations to deploy a private cloud environment based on the OpenStack orchestration technology.

The two companies on Sept. 16 announced the out-of-the-box OpenStack cloud offering, which pairs AMD's dense, low-power SeaMicro SM15000 microserver with Canonical's Ubuntu Linux operating system—LTS 14.04—and OpenStack, the open-source software stack aimed at enabling businesses to build private clouds.

The goal of the partnership is to give organizations the technologies and tools they need to build private clouds without having to spend a lot of money on the infrastructure or integration of technologies, according to Dhiraj Mallick, corporate vice president and general manager of AMD's data center server solutions.

"AMD and Canonical have dedicated a tremendous amount of engineering resources to ensure an integrated solution that removes the complexity of an OpenStack technology deployment," Mallick said in a statement. "The SM15000 server, Ubuntu LTS 14.04 and OpenStack is an amazing solution filling a need in the industry for an OpenStack solution that can be deployed easily without spending a fortune on professional services or hiring teams of people."

Capabilities in the solution include configuration tasks that are automated, simplified management and a GUI that enables users to easily deploy new services on demand, officials with both vendors said.

AMD bought SeaMicro more than two years ago to build out its cloud infrastructure capabilities and gain SeaMicro's Freedom fabric technology designed to help link and manage the hundreds of CPU cores that power the microservers. AMD got a huge win a year ago when Verizon announced that the SM15000 systems and Freedom fabric would form the foundation of the wireless provider's new public cloud. The microservers are designed to pack a lot of performance into small systems that use relatively small amounts of power and space, enabling businesses to put a lot of them into data centers.

SeaMicro systems can run not only on AMD's Opteron server processors based on the latest "Piledriver" core, but also on Intel's Xeon E3 chips based on both the "Ivy Bridge" and "Haswell" architectures.

The SM15000 links 512 CPU cores in a 10U (17.5-inch) rack system and offers 160 gigabits of I/O networking and more than 5 petabytes of storage. The Freedom fabric is a 1.28-terabyte supercompute fabric. The microserver is designed for high efficiency, relatively low cost and easy management, including eliminating the need for top-of-rack switches, terminal services, hundreds of cables and thousands of components, according to AMD officials.

In the joint solution with Canonical, the SM15000 server includes three cloud controllers, three nodes for the Cinder block storage service in OpenStack, 57 nodes for the Nova cloud computing fabric controller for OpenStack, 64GB of object storage and 128 Gigabit Ethernet NICs. There also is integrated Layer 2 switching, 80G bps of I/O in the server, which consumes 55 watts of power.

On the software side is Ubuntu LTS 14.04 and OpenStack, including a Ubuntu server, a Metal-as-a-Service feature and the Juju service orchestration tool in Ubuntu.

"Canonical has developed the most sophisticated set of tools in the industry to remove the complexity of an enterprise grade OpenStack deployment," John Zannos, vice president of cloud channels and alliances at Canonical, said in a statement. "The AMD-Canonical OpenStack solution bundle will help drive increased velocity for clients seeking to leverage scale-out cloud technology for next generation workloads."