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Home > iSGTW - 16 June 2010 > Feature - Open Nebula becomes what you want

Open Nebula becomes what you want


An intricate sand castle sculpture, about 10 feet (over 3 meters) high, in Victoria, Australia. Photo courtesy Wikipedia, under Creative Commons license.

As children, our sand castles were limited only by our imaginations. Sand is a great building material, making it possible to do almost whatever you wanted. It is abundant, easy to shape and, if the tower, outer wall or turret didn’t turn out as you hoped, easy to re-shape. It might not be very permanent, but for the job at hand — it worked great.

The stuff of computing should be a bit more durable, but similarly flexible. The demands of today will not be the same as those of tomorrow, and the computing underpinnings should adapt as needed.

Companies who manage a lot of data can now hire the support of a start-up business, C12G Labs, to help them design and construct a custom-fit cloud infrastructure.

The people behind OpenNebula — an open-source toolkit to build cloud computing infrastructures — have founded the company to help other business create the cloud infrastructure they want. Primarily, OpenNebula users are companies or research centers that require commercial support and customizations to build a cloud solution fitting into their data center. OpenNebula allows any type of cloud to be built: public, private or hybrid; and it is capable of working with any data center.

“Our experience is that one single cloud solution does not fit all the requirements and constraints from any data center. We provide our partners with technology and services to build their custom cloud solution, product or service,” said Ignacio Llorente, co-leader of the OpenNebula open-source project and chief executive advisor of C12G Labs.

“Cloud is about integration. A cloud infrastructure should fit into the existing services in the data center. It should be a technology that can be adapted and customized to work into any environment,” says Llorente. “So they need a company-specific cloud distribution  to meet the performance, integration and configuration requirements of their target infrastructure, processes or use cases.”

Clouds on the horizon

C12G is also working on an Enterprise Edition of OpenNebula, with additional features for business and large-scale environments.

Over the past year, the CERN IT department has been evaluating several flavors of cloud software for production-level usage in the future.

“Right now,” says Sebastien Goasguen, who has been closely involved in this work, “OpenNebula is the best solution we’ve tested so far.”

Danielle Venton, EGEE. Curious about the name? C12G is a numeronym of CloudComputing.

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