Open source cloud computing slow to catch on, survey finds

The open source cloud computing market has been heating up in the last year with momentum for OpenStack building, Citrix CloudStack spinning out of OpenStack to be its own project and Eucalyptus slowly gaining tractions. But a new report from cloud management company Zenoss finds slow adoption of these open source platforms so far.

In the survey of more than 600 members of Zenoss' open source community, fewer than 1 in 5, 18%, said they have deployed an open source cloud management platform. Maturity of the projects, lack of support and security were the top-cited reasons for the lack of adoption.

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Of users that do deploy open source cloud platforms, OpenStack is the most commonly deployed platform, claiming almost 50% market share among these users surveyed. The project, backed by Rackspace, HP, Dell, IBM, Cisco and other tech heavyweights, has come under some criticism recently from Gartner. The project recently released its sixth version of the OpenStack code.

CloudStack, which is backed by Citrix but managed by the Apache Software Foundation, is the second most popular with 19% of adoption, followed by Eucalyptus at below 10%. Despite the low adoption rates, 43% of respondents said they are thinking about deploying an open source cloud in the future.

The report notes some other interesting figures about overall cloud adoption, finding that VMware is the dominant hypervisor in the enterprise, powering three-quarters of virtualized environments. KVM, Microsoft Hyper-V and Xen each followed in terms of their prominence, with about one-fifth of respondents noting they use those hypervisors. Only 16% also said they were using a platform as a service (PaaS), although 30% of those who said they are not said they are interested. As a comparison, another recent survey of more than 750 respondents by North Bridge Venture Capital partner Michael Skok found that 82% of users were using a software as a service (SaaS) application. A Gartner report recently found that SaaS has by far the most investments in it so far, with it being a $14 billion industry compared to the $6 billion infrastructure as a service (IaaS) market and the $1.2 billion PaaS market.

Network World staff writer Brandon Butler covers cloud computing and social collaboration. He can be reached at BButler@nww.com and found on Twitter at @BButlerNWW.

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