Cloud Services

Mirantis Woos Comms With Cloud, NFV Synergy

Cloud and NFV are joined together. Carriers are adopting cloud infrastructure as a foundation for next-generation agile services, with NFV providing the network flexibility to meet the needs of cloud customers.

And NFV isn't just an enabler for the cloud. NFV also uses the cloud to deploy virtual network functions where they're needed most, rather than locking VNFs into particular servers and locations.

Mirantis Inc. , the leading OpenStack distribution provider, is looking to ride that virtuous cycle into greater success with comms providers. Earlier this month, it introduced a few key NFV partnerships. Now it's updating its OpenStack distro with new capabilities for resilience at scale.

Some 40% of Mirantis's business comes from service providers, including AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Vodafone Americas , Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT) and Telstra Corp. Ltd. (ASX: TLS; NZK: TLS), Boris Renski, Mirantis CMO and co-founder, tells Light Reading. These are companies adopting New IP networks in the face of competition from disruptors such as Amazon Web Services Inc. .

"NFV is one of the biggest use cases for deploying OpenStack to date," Renski says. OpenStack provides the Virtual Infrastructure Management (VIM) component of NFV, for an interface between VNFs and the underlying SDN network and hardware.

Earlier this month, Mirantis announced partnerships with NFV vendors Citrix Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CTXS), Metaswitch Networks and Overture Networks Inc. on integrating OpenStack with VNFs. Mirantis is also partnering on NFV with telco blockbuster Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC), as well as network security supplier Palo Alto Networks Inc. , and joined the Open Platform for NFV Project Inc. last year.

In addition to its NFV partnerships, Mirantis followed up Wednesday with a new version of its OpenStack distribution, addressing concerns that OpenStack is still unstable and not ready for mission-critical deployments. (See Mirantis Updates OpenStack Distro for Enhanced Stability, Support.)

While previous versions of Mirantis OpenStack were focused on making deployments easier, Version 7.0 is designed to make the software "the most resilient at scale," Kamesh Pemmaraju, VP, product marketing and technology alliances, tells Light Reading.

"Day One is getting it up and running. Now what do I do from here?" Pemmaraju says.

Mirantis OpenStack Version 7 includes tools for running clouds with hundreds of nodes. Network operators will be able to use the software to migrate instances from hosts marked for maintenance; for network topology management; scaling north-south traffic with a distributed virtual router; integrating container platforms, including Cloud Foundry and Kubernetes; and deploying multiple Hadoop or Spark big data clusters in parallel. The new version is based on the most recent Kilo release of the cloud platform.

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Mirantis is also extending support for its distribution from two years to three.

Mirantis secured its OpenStack leadership a month ago with a second $100 million funding round and strategic relationship with Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) Mirantis said at the time it will work with Intel to improve performance in scale, storage, network integration and big data support.(See Mirantis Secures OpenStack Kingpin Status With $100M Round, Intel Collaboration .)

Mirantis's main rival is Red Hat Inc. (NYSE: RHT), which was an early investor in Mirantis before the two became rivals. Red Hat recently introduced its Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform 7 with security and networking enhancements aimed at telcos.

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to [email protected]

Mitch Wagner 10/8/2015 | 3:27:13 PM
Purity test Pemmaraju named another competitor, HP, which has its own Openstack implementation. He said, however, that he hasn't heard from HP in a  quarter and questioned HP's ongoing commitment to OpenStack. 

He also said Mirantis positions its value add that it's a pure-play offering. Red Hat and HP want you to work with their other products and services. Mirantis only does OpenStack — they work with everybody.
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