Most of the media talk about cloud computing focuses on the public cloud, but many businesses have opted for either private clouds or some form of hybrid cloud solution that combines private and public cloud hosting. Open source cloud solutions allow companies to reap many of the benefits of cloud computing while also getting the flexibility and customization that open source systems afford.
The following are some popular open source solutions for private and hybrid cloud computing:
OpenStack – Created from a collaboration of NASA and Rackspace, OpenStack offers a scalable open source cloud solution for both public and private clouds. It is currently one of the largest projects and has the backing of many large commercial enterprises.
Xen Cloud Platform – Xen, which is most widely known for its hypervisor visualization solution, also offers XCP, a turnkey open source solution for “out-of-the-box” virtualization and cloud computing. It allows its users to build enterprise-ready public and private clouds.
CloudForms – Red Hat has become a trusted provider of enterprise Linux server solutions, and it also now offers an open hybrid cloud solution in CloudForms. Its strong point is its flexibility and customization that covers both private on-premise needs and public cloud applications.
Apache CloudStack – Dissatisfied with the direction of OpenStack, Citrix broke away and started its own open source cloud, CloudStack, which is now an Apache project. Like the others on the list, CloudStack is flexible enough to work with public clouds, private clouds, and hybrid cloud systems. It is a turnkey solution offering a complete IaaS (infrastructure as a service) stack for cloud computing.
The options for open source private cloud computing are many. If you need flexibility, a hybrid solution, and are willing to make the effort to customize and build upon an open platform, the private cloud might be right for your organization.