Cloud: Technology or Operations Model?

Greg DeKoenigsberg gdk at
Wed Jan 20 21:56:08 UTC 2010

On Wed, 20 Jan 2010, David Huff wrote:

>> Tools that help our users do what?  It can't be cloud stuff because at
>> that point it's circular reasoning.
>> 	-Mike
> Well there are three components of cloud stuff
> 1) The images that run the guests, the hypervisor, or node.
> 2) Cloud management, They manage not only the underlying nodes but also
> the guest on the nodes.
> 3) The guests
> The problem is that Fedora fits into all of these places.  For the EC2
> users we are focused on #3, for Ovirt, RHEV-H, and other cloud
> deployments #1, and for Fedora infrastructure we are focused on all
> three but mainly #2?
> So how do we approach this?

By bounding the handful of problems that we *know* we need to solve that 
pertain to "cloud".

There can be no doubt that "getting Fedora images to work on EC2" falls 
under "cloud".

There can be little doubt that "getting Fedora images to work on other 
public clouds" also falls under cloud, and one hopes that the processes 
bear some resemblance to one another.

There can be little doubt that "moving a workload from this public cloud 
to that public cloud" falls under cloud, since that's largely the 
point of Deltacloud -- although there is some doubt about how many people 
will be keen on that particular use case.

There's all kinds of doubt about "private cloud", and where that separates 
from plain ol' "managing a bunch of VMs" -- which is why, I think, we 
start with the public cloud cases.  Because (a) we really *need* to get 
those squared away so that Fedora doesn't end up with lots of crappy 
images floating around the public cloud providers, and (b) getting those 
use cases straightened out will give us some insights (I hope) about how 
private clouds work, and the differences between "private cloud" and 
"plain ol' VM management".  Which may be vanishingly few, and dependent 
largely upon context.

Here's a use case I hear described all the time:

* Developer has hot idea.

* Developer asks for IT resources from Big Bastard Company to implement 

* IT staff at BBC says "fill out these fifty forms and we'll get back to 
you a fortnight after never ever."

* Developer plunks down credit card for EC2 instance and expenses it as 
"lunch for client", since the monthly cost is roughly equivalent.

* Developer gets cool proof-of-concept working on cloud!  While 
inadvertently ending up dependent on lots of particular "cloud-isms", 
like, say, Amazon's Elastic Block Storage.

* Boss says "WANT".

* IT staff says "oh crap, now how do we move this thing in-house?"

One day this discussion may have more meat.  One day Deltacloud may be 
more relevant.  One day the relationships between public and private 
clouds will be crystal clear.  In the meantime, I just wanna see people I 
know using the *public cloud* as it exists today to solve actual problems, 
so we can be speaking from a position of understanding, rather than 
talking hypotheticals.


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