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Which new OpenStack projects will enhance container support?

OpenStack updates last year helped boost container support on the open source platform -- but are there any new enhancements coming down the pike?

Open source platforms, like OpenStack, are constantly evolving in terms of how they support new technologies, such as containers.

The OpenStack community is committed to implementing and improving container support, and recent OpenStack projects and updates suggest this. For example, the Liberty release of OpenStack in October 2015 implemented the Magnum module to support three leading container orchestration engines: Docker, Google Kubernetes and Apache Mesos. In addition, the Ironic module in OpenStack can support bare-metal container deployment.

But there are more OpenStack container updates in the pipeline. Several new OpenStack projects aim to improve support for containerized workloads in OpenStack, and simplify multi-tenant container management for production environments. Beyond Magnum and Ironic, two noteworthy OpenStack projects in development include Kolla and Murano.

Kolla provides container and deployment tools for operating OpenStack clouds in which each OpenStack service runs in a Docker container. The idea is to provide a more complete and uniform container environment where components can connect and scale with minimal manual intervention. Kolla can deploy Ironic services, allowing the same container deployment on bare metal. Kolla can also deploy OpenStack storage modules such as Cinder, Ceph and Swift.

Kolla is ready for evaluation, but it may be some time before it is ready for production use.

Murano, another OpenStack project in the works, offers an application catalog that developers and cloud administrators can use to publish applications in the cloud from the OpenStack Horizon dashboard. Murano can also access applications from public repositories including the OpenStack Community App Catalog, Google Container Repository and the Docker Hub or Registry. Murano allows for full application lifecycle management, and simplifies the deployment of packaged applications.

Versions of Murano have been available since OpenStack's Juno release in 2014, but it continues to evolve and improve integration with other OpenStack projects and services.

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Which OpenStack projects have you found most helpful for container deployment?
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