Mirantis pitches a do-it-yourself OpenStack cloud

OpenStack is coming into its own, at least if you count the number of companies delivering OpenStack-based cloud infrastructure. But with variety comes confusion. Who do you go with? Rackspace(s rax)? Red Hat(s rhat)? Hewlett-Packard(s hpq)? Cloudscaling? SUSE? Ubuntu? Internap(s inap)? Someone else? Storage from one vendor, compute from another? Mirantis is pitching itself as just the company to sort out the best OpenStack technologies for a given implementation.
The systems integrator is now offering its prescriptions for the best “Do it yourself” OpenStack for your needs, said Boris Renski, co-founder of the Mountain View, Calif.-based company.¬†Mirantis, a member of the OpenStack Foundation board, says its already delivered more than 30 OpenStack deployments for companies including The Gap, PayPal, Internap, Webex (s csco), Internap — even NASA, the great grandaddy of OpenStack itself.

Here’s the thing about OpenStack — techies inside companies often want cloud computing capabilities and have the wherewithal to test them out but not the time or energy to knit together the disparate pieces that go into an OpenStack cloud. Mirantis says it can offer that OpenStack infrastructure — having already vetted the best, most stable OpenStack components and deliver them in a fixed time for a fixed amount, Renski told me.

Mirantis says it does the due diligence to keep up with which vendor has the most stable implementation of all the OpenStack subsystems and provides a blueprint based on those.

Moves like this show that OpenStack is gaining maturity. In the past, systems integrators ¬†often acted as the arbiters to offer the best technologies for different use cases — Novell file-and-print servers, Microsoft desktop operating systems, Lotus collaboration software — and then tied them together into a coherent whole. The idea then as now is to prevent vendor lock-in, which remains a key concern in the cloud just as it was inside a company’s server room.