Caution: Articles written for technical not grammatical accuracy, If poor grammar offends you proceed with caution ;-)
If you have been looking into Openstack as a standardized api for your cloud infrastructure you have undoubtedly realized how complex it is to get an Openstack environment up and running. VMware Integrated Openstack or VIO takes the deployment of Openstack and literally makes it brain dead simple. I mean let’s face it, if I can deploy it then you know it’s simple 😉 About a year ago started down the path of deploying open stack into the MoaC lab. The project was very short lived because I just didn’t have weeks to dedicate to getting it done. Fortunately VIO has been released and I can now implement Openstack in the Moac is about an hour. No that wasn’t one of my many typos you may find in my articles I did mean to say “an hour”.
Before you say why should I buy Openstack from VMware when it’s an open source project, let just say because it’s free! Well sort of. It’s free for all customers with vSphere Enterprise Plus, vSphere with Operations Management Enterprise Plus or vCloud Suite. Chances are if you are interested in Openstack you fit into one of these buckets and you can get it for free.
What is deployed as part of VIO?
So what do you get when you deploy VIO. Well for starters you get 13 vm’s built out and configured for you automatically by the VIO installer. Not only does the installer do all the work for you, but the implementation is a production ready solution. Redundant Load Balancers, Redundant Controllers, Redundant Memcache Servers, Redundant RabbitMQ servers and a three node MariaDB database cluster. Oh and if you are using NSX it gets even better. Pre-configured distributed firewall rules, edge deployment and integration with Neutron. Who can argue with that? Oh and have I mentioned that it is Openstack? The API’s are unchanged by VMware. They are the same API’s nothing added or removed so you are not locked in. The deployment is released in accordance with the Openstack standards.
Wait I heard it only supports vSphere?
You did hear correctly. It only supports vSphere as a hypervisor, but is that really a bad thing? There are many benefits to this. Just think about having end to end support for your Openstack deployment. The benefits of that alone huge. Calling one support line that can handle it all. Aside from that you get all the great benefits that vSphere has offered for years. Don’t get me wrong I love open source software and I run a ton of it, but KVM just doesn’t compare to the reliability, simplicity, and features of vSPhere. Anyway only vSphere is supported, but there is nothing wrong with that in my book.
How does this compare to vRA?
How does VIO compare to vRA? It doesn’t! OpenStack is not a competitor to vRA. Openstack is a standardized API, that’s it. It doesn’t have any compliance, governance, lifecycle, etc that vRA provides. I will say the vRA installer can learn a little something from the VIO installer. Openstack is really nothing more than a standardized way for developers to write code that can interact with your infrastructure. You can feel free to start throwing old fruit, but that is what it is. Don’t get me wrong I’m not downplaying the value is a unified API for your infrastructure. Openstack is awesome and having a standardized API is invaluable, but it’s not the same as vRA.
There are many other benefits to using VIO especially if you are or will be using NSX. Over the next few weeks I will be going through the VIO setup and publishing more information on the benefits and value of VIO so be sure to check back and see what it’s all about.