OpenStack cloud adoption continues to rise but challenges remain


The adoption of OpenStack is going up and increasingly seen as a cost effective alternative to public clouds, according to a new survey released by cloud software provider Talligent.

The survey results of almost 650 virtualisation and cloud IT professionals, published in the inaugural State of OpenStack report, finds OpenStack deployments are likely to accelerate beyond the development environment once in place. Lab environments are expected to go from 43% to 89% among respondents in 12 months, with QA and test environments going from 47% to 91% in the same timeframe.

Alongside the comparisons with the cost of public cloud, claimed by 61% of respondents as a driver for OpenStack adoption, a desire to improve responsiveness for IT service delivery was also highly cited (59%), as well as the high cost of legacy IT and avoiding vendor lock in.

Yet there are issues which still need to be overcome. According to the report, users of OpenStack are more likely to say complexity is increasing, while evaluators of OpenStack are inclined to say the opposite. So who is right? Almost one in three (30%) respondents said they were using  OpenStack to support projects or workloads, compared with a similar number (32%) who were evaluating it but not using it. Among the biggest challenges cited by respondents were finding talent to manage and operate the system, deploying VLAN-based networking, and installation complexity.

Overall, however, the survey results reflect positively on OpenStack, according to Talligent CEO Sanjay Mishra – and not altogether unsurprisingly, the Austin-based firm offers OpenBook, a product which allows organisations to monetise off OpenStack. “These survey findings are another positive indication that OpenStack is continuing to grow as a preferred method of building private and hybrid clouds for businesses of all sizes,” said Mishra.

Writing for this publication back in July, CSC chief enterprise architect David Auslander argued OpenStack was ready for the mainstream, but the right approach was vital. “At its heart, OpenStack is a pluggable, modular architecture where new components can be spun up easily,” he wrote. “The best practice here is to roll out the core services and then only add the ancillary services that are necessary.”