Defining OpenStack: Layering DefCore

VIDEO: Alan Clark, chairman of the board at the OpenStack Foundation, explains how the technical definition of what is considered the core of OpenStack is now evolving.


PARIS--As part of every OpenStack Summit, there is a meeting of the OpenStack Foundation's board of directors where issues are discussed and decisions are made. At the OpenStack Summit here, the Foundation made a number of key decisions including electing a new Platinum member and discussing a key definition of what it means to be an OpenStack distribution.

In a video interview with eWEEK, Alan Clark, chairman of the OpenStack Foundation's board of directors, detailed what decisions and discussions occurred at the Paris summit.

There were five vendors that applied to become a Platinum sponsor of the OpenStack Foundation, with Intel winning the coveted spot. Clark explained that the Platinum sponsorship shows the highest level of commitment to the OpenStack project.

As part of the board activities, there were also discussions on the organizational structure of what actually constitutes an OpenStack-related product. OpenStack has an effort known as DefCore that aims to help define what the core of OpenStack actually is.

Currently there are multiple projects in an OpenStack integrated release. For the recent Juno release cycle, the integrated projects included Nova Compute, Swift Storage, Cinder block storage, Horizon dashboard, Keystone identity, Trove database, Quantum Networking, Glance image, Heat orchestration, Ceilometer metering and Sahara big data.

Clark explained that DefCore is a subset of an OpenStack integrated release. In the refined DefCore rules, there are now multiple layers to what and how an OpenStack product can be identified.

"We recognize that we have to address different product segments in the market," Clark said.

For the DefCore subset, Clark said the goal is to have the core components needed for stability, interoperability and longevity.

One of the ongoing discussions in the OpenStack community is whether or not Swift needs to be part of DefCore. Swift has a special place in the OpenStack system as it was one of the two original projects, the other being Nova, that got OpenStack started back in 2010.

That's where the layer idea is useful. Clark said there are vendors that are solely focused on storage, while other vendors are only focused on compute or networking. With layers, there can now be subsets within the definition to meet those types of use cases.

Watch the full video interview with Allan Clark below:

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at eWEEK and Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner is an Internet consultant, strategist, and contributor to several leading IT business web sites.