OpenStack Architecture Design Guide—Now Available for Download | TechWell

OpenStack Architecture Design Guide—Now Available for Download

The OpenStack project recently celebrated its fourth anniversary. So where is it going next? Already a major force in the commercial and hybrid cloud markets, it has come a long way since its beginnings as a mash-up of the NASA Nova compute and the Rackspace-backed Swift object storage projects.

As OpenStack has developed along the way, many organizations that have wanted to deploy OpenStack-based clouds have struggled with the lack of best practices for the many different use cases. To address the well-known gap in architecture design best practices documentation, the OpenStack Architecture Design Guide is now available for download.

Since OpenStack architecture design has always been a bit of a mystery to folks who have not had the opportunity to get their hands deep in the coding process, this new book is a welcome addition to the OpenStack documentation library. For anyone who needs to design a cloud environment, OpenStack or otherwise, it is quickly apparent that while the cloud is highly flexible, to get the most out of a cloud investment it is important to define what the cloud will be used for by creating and testing use cases.

The OpenStack Architecture Design Guide, the third book published with the sponsorship of the OpenStack Foundation, was written by twelve people from a wide variety of companies, big and small, bringing with them a cross section of experiences in designing and building real-life OpenStack environments of all types.

Using the Book Sprint methodology developed by Adam Hyde, the team cranked out an amazing 60,190 words, fifteen-some graphics, and 168 pages in only five very highly caffeinated days. Nick Chase’s blog nicely sums up the extremely agile experience.

This guide concentrates on identifying important design considerations for common cloud use cases and provides examples based on these design guidelines. The more common use cases covered in the guide include:

  • General Purpose
  • Compute Focused
  • Storage Focused
  • Network Focused
  • Multi-Site
  • Hybrid Cloud
  • Massively Scalable
  • Special Cases (clouds that don’t fit into those categories, such as multi-hypervisor)

The guide does not aim to provide explicit instructions for installing and configuring the cloud, rather it focuses on design principles as they relate to user requirements combined with technical and operational considerations.

Like the OpenStack Operations Guide and the OpenStack Security Guide before it, the OpenStack Architecture Design Guide is a living document. Architects and designers are encouraged to improve and add to the content by submitting patches.

For all those folks that have been waiting on the sidelines because of a lack of component maturity, things are definitely improving. However, for all the architects who have been tasked with building an OpenStack public, private, or hybrid cloud in whatever stripe or flavor today, the OpenStack Architecture Design Guide is available electronically free of charge as part of the OpenStack body of documentation.

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