Cloud: Technology or Operations Model?

Jeremy Katz katzj at
Thu Jan 21 04:17:13 UTC 2010

On Wed, Jan 20, 2010 at 4:56 PM, Greg DeKoenigsberg <gdk at> wrote:
> 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.
>> Well there are three components of cloud stuff
>> 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".

Which is *exactly* why I think that trying to propose some general
purpose "cloud" group is an effort that's just going to be filled with
hot air.  Which is exactly what happens on *every single cloud group
that exists today on the internet*.  And it happens because of a lack
of consensus around what the term means.  I have one meaning, you have
another, dhuff has a third, and so on.

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

If we're saying this is the purpose of the group, then let's say it.
Don't tip toe around it or try to make it out to be some general
overarching, incredible effort.  Doing this and *just this alone* is
more than enough reason for existence.  And by constraining the scope,
yes, it means some people feel like "their need" isn't being covered.
But that's okay.  They can coordinate the people interested in their
need.  The nice thing is that then there's some way that we can say
that a group is successful.

> 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.

bwahaha.  bwahahaha.  bwahahahahahahahha.  :-)

One cloud != another cloud.  There are pretty fundamental differences
in their operating models that aren't something you just abstract
away.  And those differences are actually kind of important and part
of why people will choose one cloud provider over another.  The
differences end up having a distinct impact on everything from systems
management to how you want to build out apps on top of them.  Those
differences become even more pronounced at the level of "running the
OS under the constraints imposed by the provider's environment".

> 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.

I'd actually change this statement a little bit.  I want to see people
I know using EC2 to solve actual problems able to in good conscience
use Fedora without having to worry about it being several year old
versions of Fedora.  The sort of second level on top of that would
then to being able to use Fedora in Fedora-y ways rather than the
bastardized ways that you end up having to do some stuff with EC2
today.  Which the encompasses a huge amount of stuff including have
kernels/ramdisks that can be used, Fedora images actually being
available, it being possible to build one's own Fedora-based image for
your own problems, etc.

Stating it like this means that we have a _real_ concrete thing to
target.  Not some ephemeral, undefined "cloud" to argue about what is
constituted by it.

- Jeremy

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