Canonical Pushes OpenStack Managed Service With ‘Your Cloud’

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Canonical is offering to build and operate OpenStack cloud infrastructure either on-site or using a customer’s service provider of choice

Canonical has announced initiatives intended to encourage use of its Ubuntu Linux operating system for running cloud-based services, including the Your Cloud managed service and a cloud appliance called the Orange Box.

Under the Your Cloud offering, Canonical said it will build, support and maintain a cloud based on Ubuntu and the OpenStack platform for $15 (£9) per server per day, either hosted on the customer’s own premises as a private cloud or using a service provider of their choice. Your Cloud was announced at the OpenStack Summit in Atlanta, Georgia, on Wednesday.

Ubuntu is currently accepting registrations of interest for Your Cloud on its website. The announcement follows the release of Ubuntu 14.04 LTS last month, the first version backed by a long-term commitment to integrate the OpenStack framework.

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Orange Box

Also on Wednesday, the company announced the Orange Box (pictured), a 40-core, 10-node computing cluster packaged in a portable case and allowing the rapid deployment of cloud infrastructure.

The 290mm by 213mm by 545mm box ships with Ubuntu 14.04 LTS 64-bit with Canonical’s JuJu orchestration tools and the company’s “metal-as-a-service” software for hardware configuration. The appliance is suitable for OpenStack, the Cloud Foundry platform or Hadoop clusters, Canonical said.

Each node includes an Intel i5-3427U processor, 16GB of DDR3 RAM, 120GB of SSD storage, an Intel HD 4000 GPU, and an Intel gigabit network interface controller, with four of the 10 nodes including an solid-state drive and one including a Wi-Fi adapter and a 2TB hard disk drive.

Each node is connected to a gigabit switch with 802.1q VLAN support; the unit exposes six Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports on the rear panel, along with three USB and one HDMI port. The unit weighs 17kg when empty or 32kg with accessories loaded. Pricing for the base configuration starts at around £7,500 in the UK, and training is available from Canonical engineers on deploying its cloud tools.

IBM collaboration

Canonical said it is working with IBM on its cloud technologies, with the IT giant contributing to JuJu and working to integrate JuJu with OpenStack’s orchestration framework, called Heat.

The two companies are also working together on the Oasis standards body’s Topology and Orchestration Specification for Cloud Applications (Tosca) initiative, which is aiming to standardise ways of describing processes to create or modify web services.

Canonical has created a mobile version of Ubuntu, and secured its first two manufacturing partners for Ubuntu Mobile in February.

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