atul jha


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Random Thoughts: On OpenStack


OpenStack is over 5 years old now.  I have seen the project from days when many pundits claimed its not needed or it is a dead project or what not. These are some of my thoughts about the overall project & where it i s headed.

Community: I think OpenStack is one of the biggest project so far written in python. The latest release has over 5000 developers. Every release has followed a cycle & delivered timely.

Marketing Hype: OpenStack no more enjoys the hype it used to years back, tech scene changes so rapidly. 

Foundation: I think forming OpenStack foundation was one of the best thing happened to the project. The folks are working really hard to push project forward in whatever best possible way they can.

Foundation Members: OpenStack has almost every enterprise backing, check this link if you don’t believe me .  All these organization wants to make money out of it & hence they all have aspirations. Most of them have full time employes hacking/contributing to upstream OpenStack code.

Definition of OpenStack: It has been over 5 years & we have not come to a conclusion what components must/must-not have to make the product “OpenStack Powered” I know Rob & others been working hard on this, not sure when will this be finally a reality.

VC’s putting $$$:  Vc’s believed in Openstack & startups building services around OpenStack ended up getting funded over a billion $. Source

Acquisitions & Closures: In this 5 years tenure we saw a lot of these smaller startups getting acquired by traditional vendors like Piston, CloudScaling, BlueBox.  At same time we heard about Nebula closing down & HP public cloud getting shut.

Job Market: OpenStack created a great job market & even 5 years down the line being an OpenStack developer can get you good $$. If you have contributed upstream then companies will be after you to hire.

The dream of Federated Cloud: I am still waiting to see if  I will even be able to share my workload simultaneously on Rackspace, IBM Cloud or others with single OpenStack dashboard. This dream which was sold to us, I don’t see happening at all.  After fighting with Simon all these years over API I have to agree having Amazon API support as native would have increased OpenStack’s adoption.

Too many install Options: I have to agree many ways to do the same thing can be confusing. Installing OpenStack is still hard and perhaps will always remain so. I won’t be surprised if someone writes a detailed thesis on the installation procedure & options [with comparison to all devOp tools] for OpenStack & upgrading OpenStack.

Pain of managing Install/API doc:  Every new release has 100+ new flags & coordinating with developers or upstream contributor is not an easy job.  Anne & team are doing excellent work. They will love to see your contribution & this is the best place if you want to get started with  contributing to OpenStack project.

PS: I was one of the core OpenStack documentation contributor &  still a community coordinator for OpenStack project in India.

Notes from OpenStack summit, Vancouver

I was very ecstatic  to attend the recently concluded OpenStack Summit in Vancouver. While the summit was the main focal point of my trip, I was elated to bump into my friends and colleagues. After almost five years I was reunited with my very old friend Razique & Heiko.During the initial days of the documentation project I was involved in working with these guys, it was a joy to be reunited again. At the summit I also met Alex & Sam from The New Stack team and we got to discuss about the future of Openstack.

During dinner at Vietnamese food joint, we made a small podcast about the event besides writing down a post on determining the health of the OpenStack project.

Below are some of my notes determined from the overall event itself:

  1. The event venue was simply fabulous where WIFI worked most of the time and saw an attendance of over 6000+ attendees.
  2. The format of the event was modified to include container day as well as OPNFV day, a good initiative to widen the ecosystem.
  3. Seems like everyone is talking about OpenStack , even those who mocked it during inception.
  4. Containers was the buzzword. Everyone was talking about it.
  5. During the initial days, the champions for projects were acquired by traditional vendors.
  6. A lot of developers and early advocates have moved on to newer things which brings about new faces and talent. I guess it is a part of the overall evolution process.
  7. Neutron and OpenStack documentation is still an unsolved mystery and I am not sure if it can be solved.
  8. OpenStack has a total of twelve integrated projects that will explode in a year and the foundation is working on better ways to manage them.
  9. The marketplace where vendors were showcasing product was absolute fun, most of them had no projects specific to OpenStack.
  10. Accepting one click upgrade option inside OpenStack was considered wishful thinking. Now vendors like Red Hat, Mirantis or Canonical will be able to do it for your enterprise.
  11. It was good to see representatives from almost all major system integrators in India attending the summit and wanting to be part of it.

The next summit is to be held  in Tokyo, I personally have no idea if I will be present, but given the opportunity I may just go.Last but not the least thanks to OpenStack Foundation for keeping the project intact for a successful period of five years. Here’s to hoping the momentum continues.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 11.59.08 AM

Sajid, Kavit & Me [Our team of OpenStack India coordinators ]

Technology as we saw in 2014.


I know i am little late in posting this, but wiseman said its better late than none. 2014 was year with announcement all around technology.  It had some surprises as well & biggest of all MSFT taking .Net to open source.

  1. Cloud Foundry foundation announced. This announcement will add more value/credibility to overall project. Other vendors/enterprise will happily contribute to it as its no more under Pivotal`s control.
  2. Microsoft open sources .NET core I get a feeling this move is too late, i would still hope if this gets people to Azure platform.
  3. coreOS announces its own container technology.  Its always good to have choice we will see where rocket project goes in 2015.
  4. Docker adds more battery to core
  5. Octablue gets acquired by Citrix Citrix master stroke, this gets their foot inside internet of things, i have high hopes from Octablue project. Let see what happens after the acquisition.
  6. Eucalyptus gets acquired by HP Eucalyptus is dead & HP gets customers for their private cloud.
  7. OpenStack gets more mainstream Even with wide contribution and popularity a lot needs to be worked on especially the networking i.e neutron project.
  8. Microservies We will see more advocates talking about microservices.
  9. Nodejs is forked Let see what we get from the fork & if every other project adopts/supports the fork. It will be interesting project to watch in 2015.

OpenStack @OSIdays, India 2013

At OSI Days Bangalore, India we OpenStack India team organized a mini-conf. It was well accepted & we had many new faces participating as attendees as well as speakers. You can check the schedule of event here 

Its great to see so many students and professional folks joining our event. Last but not least Q/A session was my favorite part.

Thanks to organizers of OSI Days for graciously granting us venue like they did last year.

Technology as i see in 2014


1. Sql is not dead

Well i remember people calling SQL based databases historic or dead and what not. I don`t see it going anywhere. Oracle will keep minting $$ & on Open Source champions like MySql and Postgres will go along well in deployment with  most web CMS & technology. Even the cloud computing like AWS has extended its support on Postgres

2. WebRTC is kicking butt

In case you have still not heard of WebRTC, you better start looking out for it. The project will change the way real time communication is taking place on web. The fun thing is giants like Cisco and Google are battling it out for theirs as default codec.

3. OpenStack will be Defacto cloud enabler

I don`t give much attention to analysts when they say OpenStack has no real deployments. I clearly seeing the project making great strides in many areas. The modularity of OpenStack allows its component integrated with multiple technology. Companies like ConcurMercadoLibre, Disney are using Swift [Object Storage component of OpenStack]  in real production case. Yes these companies are using various other technology & some are not even using Cloud.

4. Azure & IBM will keep battling out with AWS

Azure & $MSFT will do great with cloud reason, they already have an ecosystem. ex- Office365. Microsoft will tweak there licensing cost to move all there traditional customers to cloud.  Softlayer acquisition by IBM clearly shows the future of cloud in enterprise is AWESOME. Everyone is serious.

5. People will keep talking about Big Data and NoSql

And last not the least people are usual will keep talking about Big Data & NoSql, venture capitals will keep funding startups. In reality you cannot add big data in all the use cases, i would prefer R or Python Panda for doing same stuff on smaller level.

6. PaaS PaaS PaaS baby

Yes platform as a service will remain another dominating topic for CIO & to be discussed among social media circuit. OpenShift & Cloud foundry will keep making technology polished and awesome.


Ubuntu Developer Summit and Me

Attending UDS has been one of the biggest thing happened to me in year 2012 i would say so far. 🙂

Its really great to finally meet people face to face with whom you have been interacting all this while on IRC.

I attended/participated most of the talks on server/cloud/juju during week long conference. I also attended Ubuntu Cloud Summit and was great interacting folks from big cloud based enterprises and to know about there big plans on cloud.

Spent good time with  marcoceppi in the juju room to learn tricks and pieces of juju, i have few more charms in my shoulder. It will be pushed soon to launchpad. 😀

I also met Obino and Hspencer from Eucalypus and folks from Cloudstack and Mysql apart from many others. It was great interacting with them all.

I have been telling this all this while Cloud is big and there is room for everyone, the one innovates faster and gets community/support along with gains the most. 🙂

And last night was total fun, honestly its first time i participated in Karaoke and i did well. 🙂

I have uploaded photographs i took during the summit at Google+  

Last not the least thanks to Canoanical for sponsoring me to UDS and giving me opportunity to be part of such awesome ecosystem.



Newbies guide to joining Cloud Ecosystem !!

Its been over a year i joined the cloud ride. I would be honest with reason to come up with this blog.

Folks walking in IRC channel asking questions which is more related to there OS than the cloud product.

It was like they just had a “joint” and in 30 minutes they want to have there Infrastructure as cloud service running (IaaS). I will not go in details as if it was his professor who forced him to do it in such short timeline or its his boss who wants him to look for FOSS alternatives to available proprietary products.  I have termed “Cloud Hippie

This is why i am writing this blog, just don`t be one of the “Cloud Hippie” 🙂

                                   Before you jump on cloud
Points to ponder
1. building blocks of cloud
As far as i know these are the 3 main building block of IaaS
1.1 OS
Please spend sometime, in case you have never used any Linux Distribution and once your familiar with it move to next. In case you think WTF am talking about, yeah i have seen people wanting to deploy IaaS without basic Linux Admin skill set. 🙁
1.2 Virtualization
Try to read up on what Virtualization is? What is it all about.
Which one you want to use (Kvm/Xen). Basic concept behind it.
1.3 Networking
Its you who knows about your network architecture, number of interface cards you are using and all. How will i know about your routing and sub netting.
2. Knowing your IaaS
Market is full of alternatives Cloudstack/Eucalyptus/Openstack and others.
You have to understand what exactly you want to achieve, set your priorities in place.
2.1 Programming language its written.
It becomes easy to understand how things work if you go through the code.
2.2 Basic idea about each components.
Every IaaS has its own components. If your using Eucalyptus you will find
terms like NC/CC/Walrus & if using Openstack you will find
nova/glance/swift/keystone.  Go through the blog, basic install guide try to know some basics about the service you finally want to deploy.
3. What do you want finally?
So now once you have done your homework.
3.1 Hypervisor (Kvm/Xen)
You will be easily in position to decide what hypervisior you are going to use according to your internal needs.
3.2 Operating system (Ubuntu/Fedora/Redhat)
After reading through basic documentation you can easily decide which distribution it is more easy to deploy and maintain. Remember you also need to get regular security updates, bug fixes as well. 🙂
4. Getting Help
This is the crossroad. You tried everything still in pain/bleeding. It might be bug, your typo in config file or anything.
4.1 Forum
Most projects has a place where people discuss when they are stuck or even when they have something to share. Trust me in most cases many others would have stuck where you are currently.
4.2 Visit IRC
This is where the devs sit, don`t ask ASL there.  Trust me not everyone is paid to answer your questions unlike very few. So be polite and ask questions without demanding or cribbing 🙂
4.3 Go to the mailing list
 Join the mailing list of the project to know more whats happening inside.
5. Contribute
5.1 Report bugs, whats wrong/missing.
Every project needs people to find issues. Launchpad or other hosted platform has inbuilt bug reporting tool. 🙂
5.2 Write a blog explaining your install doc.
Please note any single achievement you have done is incredible, spreading it will help other newbie.
5.3 Help others at IRC/Mailing list.
This is your time to join the flock, help those who are stuck 🙂
5.4 Evangelism
Spread the word in your area, you might be only one with this expertise. It will be really cool to help and get more inside community. 🙂
In case i am still not able to make things clear follow big daddy`s guide ” How to ask question in smart way”

Event Report:, Pune, India is one of the oldest FOSS event in India, this year it was scheduled on 10th and 11th Feb 2012 .

And yes this time i attended it as speaker after failing to qualify last year. 🙂

I spoke on Juju, Ubuntu Cloud Orchestration framework , presentation slides are available here

Few take away for me personally after attending the event :-

1. Moving out of the distro fanaticism.

2. Getting to know more about Mozilla and Wikipedia folks.

3. Socializing with Fedora folks.

4. Finally meeting Arky after 9 yrs. 😀

FOSS events are good way to meet old folks, chat/socialize and exchange ideas.

I met many old timers like mbuf, ramky, runa, karunakar, nager, shariq and greenmang0 , others apart from spending most of my time with Deependra the Eucalyptus magician.

Lastly big thanks to the volunteers and organizers, sponsors(Eucalyptus) for making this event a grand success.

Lastly thanks again to Deeprendra for getting me this shiny beer opener, i  badly needed this. 😀


Openstack beginner`s guide for Diablo/Oneiric released.

Openstack cloudbook is available for download now with Oneiric and Diablo release :–

All infos are available here:-



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