Since it launched two years ago, the open-source cloud computing platform OpenStack has won over an impressive array of tech backers, including Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Citrix. But not IBM.
That is about to change, according to this OpenStack contributor page, which lists IBM as a participant as of February 2. There has been no announcement, but Krishnan Subramanian over at CloudAve certainly spotted this and got the word out. Another, more official-looking OpenStack contributor page makes no mention of IBM.
OpenStack was launched by Rackspace and NASA in 2010 to furnish an open-source cloud computing platform alternative to what VMware, Amazon Web Services and others offered. Last fall, Rackspace turned leadership over to a more independent OpenStack foundation to run.
While each of the big tech companies that back OpenStack has its own proprietary cloud products, they all are hedging their bets by joining the open-source effort in case it winds becoming popular. As part of their backing, they contribute technology to the effort and support that technology. OpenStack is now available in beta. Ultimately, the idea is that each of the big tech companies would have its own version of OpenStack, but all of them would be interoperable.
IBM, which has an arsenal of hardware, software and middleware at its disposal, has done better than most legacy software companies of moving in both the open source and commercial software world. It was, for example, largely responsible for the success of Eclipse, the open-source Java framework it launched and then released to an independent foundation.
An IBM did not respond to requests for comment; an OpenStack spokeswoman had no comment.
It could be that one or both companies are holding off on a formal announcement — IBM’s big PartnerWorld Leadership Conference kicks off tomorrow in New Orelans. This is the kind of announcement that would be ideal for that venue.
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