||This article needs additional citations for verification. (October 2012)|
|Stable release||Grizzly (2013.1.1) / May 10, 2013|
|License||Apache License 2.0|
OpenStack is an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) cloud computing project that is free open source software released under the terms of the Apache License. The project is managed by the OpenStack Foundation, a non-profit corporate entity established in September 2012 to promote, protect and empower OpenStack software and its community.
More than 150 companies have joined the project among which are Intel, AMD, Canonical, SUSE Linux, Inktank, Red Hat, Groupe Bull, Cisco, Dell, HP, IBM, NEC, VMware and Yahoo!. It is portable software, but is mostly developed and used on operating systems running Linux.
The technology consists of a series of interrelated projects that control large pools of processing, storage, and networking resources throughout a datacenter, all managed through a dashboard that gives administrators control while empowering its users to provision resources through a web interface.
OpenStack is committed to an open design and development process. The community operates around a six-month, time-based release cycle with frequent development milestones. During the planning phase of each release, the community gathers for the OpenStack Design Summit  to facilitate live developer working sessions and assemble the roadmap.
In July 2010, Rackspace Hosting and NASA jointly launched a new open source cloud initiative known as OpenStack. The mission of the OpenStack project was to enable any organization to create and offer cloud computing services running on standard hardware. The community's first official release, code-named Austin, was made available just four months later with plans to release regular updates of the software every few months. The early code comes from NASA's Nebula platform as well as Rackspace's Cloud Files platform. Early on in the history of the project, Ubuntu  Linux distribution decided to adopt OpenStack.
OpenStack has a modular architecture that encompasses following components:
- OpenStack Compute (code-name Nova)
- OpenStack Object Storage (code-name Swift)
- OpenStack Image Service (code-name Glance)
- OpenStack Identity (code-name Keystone)
- OpenStack Dashboard (code-name Horizon)
- OpenStack Networking (code-name Quantum)
- OpenStack Block Storage (code-name Cinder)
Several components have been added for the next release:
- Metering (Ceilometer) - https://launchpad.net/ceilometer
- Basic Cloud Orchestration & Service Definition (Heat) - http://wiki.openstack.org/Heat
Compute (Nova) 
OpenStack Compute (Nova) is a cloud computing fabric controller (the main part of an IaaS system). It is written in Python and uses many external libraries such as Eventlet (for concurrent programming), Kombu (for AMQP communication), and SQLAlchemy (for database access). Nova's architecture is designed to scale horizontally on standard hardware with no proprietary hardware or software requirements and provide the ability to integrate with legacy systems and third party technologies. It is designed to manage and automate pools of computer resources and can work with widely available virtualization technologies, as well as bare metal and high-performance computing (HPC) configurations. KVM and XenServer are available choices for hypervisor technology, together with Hyper-V and Linux container technology such as LXC. In addition to different hypervisors, OpenStack runs on ARM.
Object Storage (Swift) 
OpenStack Object Storage (Swift) is a massively scalable redundant storage system. Objects and files are written to multiple disk drives spread throughout servers in the data center, with the OpenStack software responsible for ensuring data replication and integrity across the cluster. Storage clusters scale horizontally simply by adding new servers. Should a server or hard drive fail, OpenStack replicates its content from other active nodes to new locations in the cluster. Because OpenStack uses software logic to ensure data replication and distribution across different devices, inexpensive commodity hard drives and servers can be used.
In Aug 2009, Rackspace started the development of Swift, which is a complete replacement for the Cloud Files product. The initial development team consists of nine developers.
Block Storage (Cinder) 
OpenStack Block Storage (Cinder) provides persistent block level storage devices for use with OpenStack compute instances. The block storage system manages the creation, attaching and detaching of the block devices to servers. Block storage volumes are fully integrated into OpenStack Compute and the Dashboard allowing for cloud users to manage their own storage needs. In addition to simple Linux server storage, it can use numerous storage platforms including CloudByte, Coraid, IBM Storage (Storwize family, SAN Volume Controller, and XIV Storage System), GlusterFS, Ceph, Linux LIO, NetApp, Nexenta, Scality, SolidFire and HP (StoreVirtual and StoreServ 3Par families). Block storage is appropriate for performance sensitive scenarios such as database storage, expandable file systems, or providing a server with access to raw block level storage. Snapshot management provides powerful functionality for backing up data stored on block storage volumes. Snapshots can be restored or used to create a new block storage volume.
Networking (Quantum) 
OpenStack Networking (Quantum) is a pluggable, scalable and API-driven system for managing networks and IP addresses. Like other aspects of the cloud operating system, it can be used by administrators and users to increase the value of existing datacenter assets. OpenStack Networking ensures the network will not be the bottleneck or limiting factor in a cloud deployment and gives users real self service, even over their network configurations.
Dashboard (Horizon) 
The OpenStack Dashboard (Horizon) provides administrators and users a graphical interface to access, provision and automate cloud-based resources. The extensible design makes it easy to plug in and expose third party products and services, such as billing, monitoring and additional management tools. The dashboard is also brandable for service providers and other commercial vendors who want to make use of it.
The dashboard is just one way to interact with OpenStack resources. Developers can automate access or build tools to manage their resources using the native OpenStack API or the EC2 compatibility API.
OpenStack Identity (Keystone) provides a central directory of users mapped to the OpenStack services they can access. It acts as a common authentication system across the cloud operating system and can integrate with existing backend directory services like LDAP. It supports multiple forms of authentication including standard username and password credentials, token-based systems and AWS-style logins. Additionally, the catalog provides a queryable list of all of the services deployed in an OpenStack cloud in a single registry. Users and third-party tools can programmatically determine which resources they can access.
The OpenStack Image Service (Glance) provides discovery, registration and delivery services for disk and server images. The ability to copy or snapshot a server image and immediately store it away is a powerful capability of the OpenStack cloud operating system. Stored images can be used as a template to get new servers up and running quickly and more consistently if you are provisioning multiple servers than installing a server operating system and individually configuring additional services. It can also be used to store and catalog an unlimited number of backups. The Image Service can store disk and server images in a variety of back-ends, including OpenStack Object Storage. The Image Service API provides a standard REST interface for querying information about disk images and lets clients stream the images to new servers.
Amazon Web Services compatibility 
Some of the prominent users include:
- Rackspace Cloud 
- HP Public Cloud – runs a variant of Ubuntu Linux 
- MercadoLibre.com – MercadoLibre has over 6,000 VMs managed by OpenStack 
- AT&T – joined OpenStack in January 2012
- KT (formerly Korea Telecom) 
- Deutsche Telekom has created a "Business Marketplace", whose functionality is based on OpenStack
- Wikimedia Labs
- Hostalia of Telefónica Group - offers an on-demand Virtual Private Cloud based on OpenStack 
- Red Hat OpenShift PaaS solution. See Openshift website.
- Zadara Storage - offers Cloud Block Storage based on OpenStack 
- Mint Services - offers IaaS and Block Storage based on OpenStack 
- GridCentric - offers virtual machine optimization solutions based on OpenStack 
- Piston Cloud Computing
- RHEL 
Release history 
|Release name||Release date||Included Component code names ||Notes|
|Austin||21 October 2010||Nova, Swift|
|Bexar||3 February 2011||Nova, Glance, Swift|
|Cactus||15 April 2011||Nova, Glance, Swift|
|Diablo||22 September 2011||Nova, Glance, Swift|
|Essex||5 April 2012||Nova, Glance, Swift, Horizon, Keystone|
|Folsom||27 September 2012||Nova, Glance, Swift, Horizon, Keystone, Quantum, Cinder||Openstack Folsom Architecture|
|Grizzly||4 April 2013||Nova, Glance, Swift, Horizon, Keystone, Quantum, Cinder|
See also 
- Cloud computing comparison
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- "GrizzlyReleaseSchedule - Wiki". Wiki.openstack.org. Retrieved 2013-04-04.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: OpenStack|
- Official website
- #openstack on freenode
Video lecture