One of the most frequent questions I have been asked since the acquisition of Cloud.com by Citrix has been around the future plans for aligning the commercial CloudStack platform acquired from Cloud.com with OpenStack, the popular open source initiative supported by both Citrix and Cloud.com that has so far attracted over 1,100 like-minded cloud developers and 80 member companies.

The first point to underscore is that CloudStack and OpenStack are highly synergistic by design. They share the same core principles, architectures and beliefs about how real clouds should be built. Bringing them together in this acquisition is a key part of our strategy.

As a founding member of Openstack.org, Citrix is the second largest contributor to the project and has membership on both the OpenStack policy board and oversight committee. None of this will change with the Cloud.com acquisition. In fact, we believe it will help accelerate our support.

So…what does “accelerate our support” actually mean? Let me start by laying out some of the cool things you can expect our combined engineering teams to work on over the next six months.

Between now and the end of calendar year 2011, our plan is to:

  • Release a Citrix tested and verified version of OpenStack, along with a cloud-optimized version of Citrix XenServer (announced at our Synergy conference as “Project Olympus”).
  • Add support for OpenStack APIs into an upcoming release of Citrix CloudStack, allowing organizations to leverage existing OpenStack tools to manage infrastructures deployed via Citrix CloudStack.
  • Deliver a common, intuitive management interface that provides manageability of both the Citrix CloudStack and OpenStack platforms.
  • Add support for bi-directional migration paths between the Citrix CloudStack and OpenStack platforms.

In short, the work we are doing to bring these pieces together will leverage some of the best and brightest brains in the business – both inside and outside of Citrix – furthering our commitment to the vision of openness and ensuring our customers and partners have world-class resources for delivering their world-class cloud strategy.

Christian Reilly
Chief Cloud Architect
Cloud Platforms Group