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The Advantages of Supporting OpenStack

August 14, 2019 By BlueAlly

As mentioned in my previous DevOps blog, OpenStack is one of the cloud platforms with growing popularity in the market and it’s already supported by the Dialogic® BorderNet® SBC and other Dialogic products. Support for OpenStack often becomes an added-value driver for customer interest in our offerings.

So, what is OpenStack?

OpenStack emerged as a means to meet the need of IT organizations with multiple servers and a desire to better share their resources, maximize utilization, scalability, and availability, and give clients multitenant shared services in the form of a private cloud. OpenStack has moved beyond legacy IT infrastructure and is being deployed as IaaS (infrastructure as a service), comprising an open-source cloud operating system with a collection of open-source software projects that allow users to develop and manage a cloud infrastructure, plus provide flexibility to developers building services and applications on top of it.

In more detail, OpenStack consists of a number of components providing mainly compute, storage, and network services. These components interact via a network layer, which provides SDN (Software Defined Networking) and integration with third-party network infrastructure providers. If you’d like to see a map of all the components, check out this diagram posted on the site.

The Basic Services

As mentioned, OpenStack is a collection of projects, also called Services. Below is a quick description of the basic Services for a classic OpenStack deployment, which make up the Controller node, Compute node, and Network node, and are implemented in the BorderNet SBC. (I am a part of the SBC development team, hence the focus on that product. OpenStack is also supported by other Dialogic products such as PowerMedia® XMS and Dialogic BUZZ™.)

  • The Controller node runs the management portions of the Compute, Network, Identity and Image services, the networking plug-in, and Horizon – the dashboard web-based self-service portal.
  • The Compute node, based on Nova project, runs the hypervisor portion of Compute that operates virtual machines. By default, Compute uses KVM as the hypervisor.
  • The Network node, based on Neutron project runs, the Networking plug-in and several agents that provision tenant networks and provide switching, routing, and other networks services.

Other key services fall into the categories of Storage, Shared Services, and higher-level Services, and some of them are utilized by the BorderNet SBC.

OpenStack Storage Services

  • Swift, the Object Storage Service, stores and retrieves unstructured data objects via RESTful (http) API, with highly fault tolerant data replication and scale-out architecture.
  • Cinder, the Block Storage Service, contains the disks provisioned to tenant virtual machine instances. It provides persistent block storage to instances, facilitating creation and management of block storage devices.

OpenStack Shared Services

  • Keystone, the Identity service, provides the authentication and authorization service for other OpenStack services, as well as a catalog of endpoints for all services.
  • Glance, the Image service, stores and retrieves virtual machine disk images. OpenStack Compute makes use of it, during instance creation and provisioning.
  • Ceilometer, the Telemetry service, monitors and meters the OpenStack cloud for billing, benchmarking, and performance.

OpenStack Higher-Level Services

  • Heat, the Orchestrator, manages multiple cloud applications by using either a native HOT-based template format or a CloudFormation based query API.
  • Trove, the Database service, provides scalable and reliable Cloud Database-as-a-Service functionality for both relational and non-relational database engines.
  • Sahara, the Data processing service, provides capabilities to provision and scale Hadoop clusters by specifying parameters like Hadoop version, cluster topology, and nodes’ hardware details.

The Benefits of Using OpenStack

OpenStack makes it much easier to develop and manage a cloud-based infrastructure and transfer that advantage onto customers. The BorderNet SBC can enjoy the advantages of additional built-in services, such as orchestration and telemetry, which provide workload provisioning and monitoring services, interacting with the Neutron service to communicate with compute and storage resources.

OpenStack application portability among private and public clouds allows customers to choose the best cloud for their applications and workflows without been locked into a specific vendor. Having support for OpenStack gives the BorderNet SBC the ability to be used on any OpenStack-powered cloud.

The Future

OpenStack is under continuous development, released every six months, and already has been widely adopted across the IT community. There is no doubt OpenStack will continue to be a significant competitor to the leading cloud vendors. As OpenStack continues to grow in popularity and maturity, becoming a robust cloud infrastructure framework, we have to ensure that Dialogic products will not stay behind. That’s why our BorderNet SBC and other products are already supporting it, with the vision to be much more integrated in the future.