OpenStack Interoperability Testing, Certification Gain Significance

by Ostatic Staff - Oct. 09, 2014

Although it is only four years old, the OpenStack cloud computing project is already having a profound impact on the plumbing and architecture of many data centers. Yesterday, I reported on how Network functions virtualization (NFV) is becoming synonymous with OpenStack, and how NFV and OpenStack could effectively rip out the proprietary infrastructure found in network deployments at many organizations.

To do that, though, IT administrators have to gain confidence in the interoperability of tools and applications that they depend on with open infrastructure platforms like NFV and OpenStack. That's where interoperability testing and certification comes in, and the OpenStack Foundation and Canonical are ramping up their efforts in this area.

Today, Big Switch Networks announced that it is the first networking vendor to be recognized with the OpenStack Foundation's OpenStack Compatible mark. The OpenStack Compatible mark is given to vendors that interoperate with recent releases of the OpenStack software stack and can demonstrate compatibility and an ongoing commitment to interoperability. Big Switch Networks collaborated with Mirantis to secure the OpenStack Compatible mark and is now the only vendor recognized as OpenStack Compatible for a data center networking fabric optimized for both Neutron and Nova networking environments. Its drivers are featured on the OpenStack Marketplace and Driverlog websites.

The OpenStack Foundation is going to play a bigger and bigger role in certifying networking and data center technologies as interoperable with OpenStack, but it is not the only organization doing so. Canonical announced the opening of the Ubuntu OpenStack Interoperability Lab (OIL) late last year, and it features some really heavy-hitting tech partners including Cisco, Dell, EMC, HP, IBM, Inktank/Ceph, Intel, Juniper and VMware. The lab is focusing on integration testing and more, and one reason it is notable is that many OpenStack deployments are built on Ubuntu as a base platform.

Many of the companies partnered with Canonical on the ab are also big contributors to OpenStack, and many have their own deployments based on the platform. OpenStack is still a young project, but ensuring its interoperability and compatibility with popular tools, hypervisors and platforms is essential. As IT departments test the OpenStack waters this year, lab tested results could play a key role in their decision making.