How to Make OpenStack Work for You

Posted on by Martin Pollock | Updated:
Reading Time: 3 minutes

What is OpenStack?

If you are looking for a way to manage your cloud computing, OpenStack is the platform for you. An open-source and free-to-use platform, OpenStack is a worldwide solution for all of your cloud-related concerns. Here is a quick OpenStack tutorial on how to get the most out of it and make OpenStack for you.

Understanding The Main Components

Like most cloud computing platforms, OpenStack is built from many components, each designed to help the platform operate smoothly and efficiently. The main components include:

  • Cinder: Also known as block storage, Cinder takes care of all storage-related tasks, and by fully integrating services with OpenStack (adding, removing, and creating new blocks (block devices) within a server), allows you to minimize your hardware resources. All OpenStack users can manage Cinder via a simple dashboard.
  • OpenStack Neutron: Resolves networking-related queries. 
  • Swift: A sophisticated storage system for both objects and files.
  • Horizon: OpenStack’s dashboard.
  • Ceilometer: Telemetry services and billing.
  • Nova: This is the mainframe or computing engine used for managing vast numbers of virtual machines.

Understanding the main components of OpenStack will help you manage your cloud environment and optimize it to work in your favor.

OpenStack is Made for Everyone

You can download and install OpenStack today through some of the various distributors and fully customize it with the services you require. In addition, IT companies such as Intel, Red Hat, Dell,  Huawei, and many others have adopted OpenStack and made it part of their cloud management. You would be surprised how many cloud platforms already have OpenStack integrated with their cloud toolkit. 

Being an open-source cloud computing platform, OpenStack supports all types of cloud environments. The latest OpenStack release was on the 14th of April, 2021, and it is called Wallaby. You can check the official installation guide and information on the company’s official website.

In addition, you can discover many tools that will help maintain your OpenStack deployment and its lifecycle. Some of the recommended frameworks include:

  • TripleO (OpenStack on OpenStack)
  • Kayobe
  • Kolla-Ansible
  • OpenStack-ansible
  • OpenStack-charms
  • Bifrost
  • OpenStack-helm

OpenStack has a few shortcuts to avoid. Here are a few tips on avoiding some of the most common ones:

  • Always make sure that your hostname and DNS resolution are correct.
  • Your service ordering must be correct. Don’t wait until rebooting a particular host to find out your service ordering is incorrect.
  • The use of a log aggregator is highly suggested as logs for many user operations are not optimal.
  • Often clean your database backups, and pay extra attention to database modifications.
  • Use Nova match as RPC failures make debugging very difficult.

Remember to upgrade as often as possible, and plan ahead to avoid a few headaches. OpenStack’s official deployment guide is an excellent resource for deploying an environment.

Benefits of OpenStack

Since its release in 2010, Openstack has continued to improve. Then, it was known as Nebula and was designed and managed by an IT company called Rackspace in collaboration with NASA. Today, it is the largest cloud computing platform globally, managed by the OpenStack Foundation, promoting its software and a community of users, developers, and contributors.

As it is an almost perfect platform, it has numerous benefits which you can enjoy. Some of the most important ones are:

Ever-Evolving Security

All the data used and uploaded is secured and protected. Therefore, security is an essential factor, and it is constantly being worked on and improved.

Open Source

OpenStack is open source allowing you to modify the software according to your company’s needs. For example, you can add additional features, edit the existing ones or upgrade them.

Access to Your Network Worldwide

The best part is that if you decide to upload your entire IT infrastructure to the cloud, you can access it anywhere in the world for as long as you need it to, without any restrictions. In addition, end-users can manage their physical, bare-metal machines with OpenStack Bare Metal Provisioning. You start by creating and populating your environment, configuring your network, and deploying the necessary changes. 

OpenStack has complete automation and maximum availability, which makes it unique. As a result, it is a great launching point for designing your desired cloud infrastructure. 

A Solution To Most Computing Problems

It is time to start your first OpenStack Project now that you understand what is OpenStack and how it operates.  Before you know it, you will have a growing enterprise, all fully protected and uploaded to the cloud. 

Cloud computing is the way of the future. It saves money and allows you full access and management of your infrastructure. While OpenStack has not peaked, it has reached its tipping point, and many Fortune 500 organizations are deploying OpenStack as a base of their IT organization and management.

Liquid Web offers Dedicated Servers for any solution you are looking to deploy. Contact our sales team today to set up your solution.

Avatar for Martin Pollock

About the Author: Martin Pollock

Martin is a tech-savvy, experienced customer and now a support technician with more than two years of experience in the field. He's a gamer at heart that also loves psychology and astronomy and would never miss a good game of basketball, even if it rains.

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