I am frequently asked by analysts, users, the media and even other vendors about the production readiness of OpenStack, to which I affirm in the positive. There are also often questions about the differences between the various OpenStack distributions and offerings. I answer whenever possible by drawing the distinction between OpenStack as the open source project and as the products and services available to help make it a production-ready cloud platform. If you are unclear about the difference between an open source project and a product, I hope this blog post serves as a useful primer. I will highlight the concept of OpenStack as a service offering (yes, Cloud-as-a Service is a thing) to the concepts of project and product, using our Rackspace Private Cloud (RPC) as the canonical example for both a product and a service. To help illustrate the distinctions, I will discuss the differences between the three offerings by examining three categories:
Excuse the slightly cataclysmic title of this post, but the first post for 2012 in the CloudU notebook series is one which hopefully will get you thinking about your career and the changes it is going to undergo over the years to come.