OpenNebula cloud — bigger than expected in business

Barb Darrow | gigaom

OpenNebula, the European-rooted open-source cloud platform is used by more businesses and in more countries than many might expect. At the ripe old age of 7, OpenNebula remains a quiet force compared to say, OpenStack.

OpenNebula — the open-source cloud behind the European Space Agency and CERN – may be bigger in private industry business than many may have anticipated.

According to new survey data from C12G Labs, the company behind OpenNebula, 43 percent of 600 users responding are in business accounts compared to 17 percent in research, and less than 10 percent in academia. Maybe this shouldn’t be a shocker given that OpenNebula’s customer page lists such companies as Akamai, Dell, IBM, SAP and Telefonica.

OpenNebula: world traveler

Also a bit surprising was that geographic distribution was much more heterogeneous than expected for a technology born and raised in Europe. Sure, nearly half (49 percent) of respondents are in Europe or Russia but a healthy 23 percent are in North America where the open-source cloud buzz is much more around the newer OpenStack cloud platform backed by Rackspace, IBM, HP, Cisco, and other tech powers and OpenStack’s slapfight with CloudStack and Eucalyptus, two other open-source cloud platforms vying for the limelight (and customers.)

What gets lost in that hubbub — which will doubtless ramp up next week at the OpenStack Summit, is that OpenNebula is more mature and battle tested than its competitors.

OpenNebula should get more credit, said Carl Brooks, cloud analyst for Tier1 Research. “I am a big fan because it’s so organically driven  … it’s seven years old, it’s parked in some of the biggest organizations out there, and that all happened without a massive wave of hype,” Brooks said.

Other fun facts

Most of the respondents (79 percent) are deploying OpenNebula in private not public cloud. The KVM hypervisor was most popular with 42 percent of respondents using it. VMware was second at 27 percent — although VMware was the preferred hypervisor of 55 percent of the big deployers — those with 500 or more nodes.

Ignacio Llorente, director of OpenNebula will be at Structure Europe next week to discuss how truly interoperable cloud technology can transform business. Based on OpenNebulas traction so far, he knows whereof he speaks.


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