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Skip Traditional Virtualization: CoreOS On OnMetal

By Kelsey Hightower, Developer Advocate and Toolsmith, CoreOS

The ability to create machine instances using OpenStack APIs on physical hardware, with the speed and ease we’ve come to expect for cloud deployments is a huge advancement in infrastructure technology. And it’s made possible by Rackspace OnMetal.

And paring OnMetal with CoreOS, a lightweight Linux distribution for massive server deployments, will help you squeeze the maximum value from your hardware.

CoreOS is not your typical Linux distribution. You won’t find a package manager or have to deploy additional automation tools – they’re built in! Our goal is to make sysadmins’ lives easier by making your infrastructure more stable, reliable and resilient, but we don’t stop there. CoreOS raises the bar by providing a platform that enables organizations big and small to easily build highly scalable infrastructures like those used by Internet giants. Now we’ve been matched on the hardware side thanks to Rackspace OnMetal.

We know what you are thinking, how do we do that?

Good question. Linux containers. CoreOS provides a cloud like platform for containers; even on bare-metal. But remember: containers are just where it starts. CoreOS makes it easy to focus on the big picture; running highly scalable and secure infrastructures. Scalability is handle by etcd, which offers service discovery and distributed configuration management, and fleet, which automates distributing containers across your entire cluster of machines.

Security is not an afterthought. CoreOS takes security to the next level. We provide a read-only OS partition and an atomic update service that keeps everything patched and running smoothly. All updates progress through alpha and beta channels before being promoted to stable, which gives the community time to test things out and catch bugs. Once software has reached the stable channel, all machines running CoreOS fetch the updates and stage them to a secondary root partition. Updates can then be applied automatically or based on a policy that you define.

Why use CoreOS on OnMetal?

CoreOS and OnMetal have a lot in common. Both platforms provide a focused solution for building next generation infrastructure. You’ve chosen OnMetal because you want high performance and you want it fast, which is what CoreOS was designed for. CoreOS lets you skip traditional virtualization and make the leap to high performance application deployments using Linux containers and leverage advanced tooling to manage it all.

The combination of Rackspace OnMetal and CoreOS gives you the ease of spinning up machines with the click of a mouse, the scalability of the cloud and the raw horsepower of running on bare metal.

About the Author

This is a post written and contributed by Kelsey Hightower.

Kelsey has worn every hat possible throughout his career in tech and enjoys leadership roles focused on making things happen and shipping software.

Kelsey is a strong open source advocate focused on building simple tools that make people smile. When he is not slinging Go code you can catch him giving technical workshops covering everything from Programming, System Administration, and his favorite Linux distro (CoreOS).


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