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An OpenStack management guide for the enterprise

Last updated:May 2018

Editor's note

Unlike AWS, Azure and Google, OpenStack is an open source cloud computing platform. This offers an enterprise more flexibility in terms of cloud infrastructure deployment and can help alleviate vendor lock-in concerns.

This flexibility, however, often comes at the cost of complex OpenStack management challenges. In addition to being more of a DIY cloud platform for enterprises, OpenStack constantly evolves. While this means new functionality around containers, security and more, it also introduces more moving parts for cloud admins to manage.

Fortunately, there are a number of native OpenStack management services, third-party tools and best practices that can help simplify the deployment and ongoing operation of the platform. Use this comprehensive guide to navigate the ins and outs of the OpenStack platform and overcome the toughest management hurdles.

1Container management on OpenStack

As enterprises seek greater workload portability across hybrid and multi-cloud models, containers are often the answer. With the popularity of Docker and Kubernetes, the OpenStack community has evolved the platform to support these services, alongside some native container tools. Through Magnum, for example, users have access to popular container orchestration engines, including Kubernetes. Additional tools, such as Kolla and Kuryr, enable enterprises to deploy production-ready containers and connect them to other containers and VM instances. However, some of these container services still have some growing up to do.

2Manage OpenStack security and testing

There are potential risks with any cloud platform, but OpenStack security challenges are especially unique, given the technology's open source nature. What's more, some of the platform's security components are still relatively immature -- though admins should expect new functionality in the future. Either way, with proper testing strategies and a large community to turn to, enterprises can protect their OpenStack cloud from threats and downtime.

3How much do you know about OpenStack?

OpenStack has many components, such as Nova, Heat and Glance, that cover a range of services -- but do you know what each of them does? Put your knowledge to the test.

4Review these OpenStack definitions

The first step toward successful OpenStack management and deployment is to know these key terms and tools.

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