OpenStack Adoption in the UK Hits 80 Percent, Claims SUSE

But cost and complexity woes remain as public cloud adoption easily surpasses private cloud sales.

OpenStack, UK

By Ben Sullivan

Up to 80 percent of IT pros in the United Kingdom have moved or are planning to move some of their workloads onto OpenStack, according to a study by SUSE.

But despite this heady uptake, those quizzed are also worried about how difficult it is to install private cloud and OpenStack, and if they're going to suffer vendor lock-in.


A lack of OpenStack skills in the market is also a cause for concern among IT professionals in the United Kingdom, with 89 percent of U.K. respondents claiming this lack of skillsets is making them reluctant to choose private cloud options.

SUSE conducted just 110 interviews in the United Kingdom for its study, nowhere near enough to get a full snapshot of OpenStack in the U.K. in 2016, but 451 Research's OpenStack investigation last summer backs up the SUSE study's claims about a lack of OpenStack skills.

451 found that running cloud on an OpenStack distribution is more expensive than running commercial cloud with firms such as VMware, Red Hat and Microsoft, citing the extra cost that has to be factored in to hire skilled OpenStack engineers.

"Finding an OpenStack engineer is a tough and expensive task that is impacting today's cloud-buying decisions," said Owen Rogers, analyst at 451 Research.

But SUSE thinks private clouds are the future for many enterprise workloads, even those that are business critical, according to SUSE U.K. manager Danny Rowark.

"This new report clearly demonstrates that U.K. businesses are keen to adopt private cloud,” said Rowark.

"With cost as a primary motivator for U.K. businesses to move to the cloud, an open source solution can play a key role in enabling organizations to implement a private cloud solution—reducing costs, driving innovation and agility, as well as providing freedom from vendor lock-in."

But the tide seems to be going against private cloud, for now, which is bad news for OpenStack vendors.

Last month, IDC found that revenue from public cloud infrastructure sales grew by almost 26 percent to $4.6bn (£3.21bn) in the third quarter of 2015, beating private cloud infrastructure sales, which only grew 18.8 percent.