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Thursday, 02 October 2014 17:04

The top Open Source Cloud Projects for 2014

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OpenStack is the top overall Open Source Cloud project followed by Docker and KVM, however problems with poor documentation is hampering the take up of Open Source projects 

OpenStack has a clear lead as the best overall Open Source cloud project according to a survey by Linux.com. Ahead of Linuxcon Europe in Dussledorf (13-15 October) Linux.com has revealed the findings of a survey at CloudOpen Linux Foundation event in Chicago.

The survey asked respondents to choose the best open source cloud project in five different categories, including Hypervisor/Container, Infrastructure as a Service, Platform as a Service, configuration and management tools and storage.  

OpenStack was overall the most popular project with Docker second – interestingly OpenStack started four years ago whereas Docker is less than two years old but has already established itself as one of the fastest growing open source projects.

In the hypervisor category, KVM received 48% of the vote, followed by Docker with 28%. It is interesting to note that Docker was chosen by more respondents than Xen, which received 15% of the vote.  Xen is an established hypervisor used in some of the world’s largest and most sophisticated cloud services.

OpenStack was the clear favourite among IaaS platforms with 63% of the vote, followed by Apache CloudStack with 18%. Among PaaS platforms, OpenShift was the clear winner with about 54% of respondents choosing it over CloudFoundry which had about 36% of the vote.


However while OpenStack scored highly as the solution users would like to user, when users were asked what they actually used most often, the results looked very different. OpenStack held just 13% of the votes, with CloudStack in a close second place with 11.5% and KVM in third place with 10.5%. Docker was down in joint 10th place with Ceph and Juju (see graph above).  

Respondents were also given an option to list their platform of choice not listed under ‘other’ category. Among IaaS platforms, there were a handful of platforms different from the four choices provided (OpenStack, CloudStack, OpenNebula & Eucalyptus), making up about two per cent among total responses.  Among PaaS platforms, write-in alternatives to OpenShift and Cloud Foundry made up to 10% of responses, though not all were open source projects. For example, Marathon and AppScale were two write-ins listed multiple times. Heroku was also commonly mentioned but it's not open source.

Approximately 47% of the voters cited poor documentation as the biggest challenge contributors face while deploying the projects they use the most. In second, 39% of the voters said complex installation steps posed the biggest challenge, followed by difficult configuration management with 23% of the vote.

As you would expect Github is the most popular development platform, with about 67% of respondents using it. Text editors are still a rage, with 60% of respondents making use of them, while only about 32% using full-fledged development platforms. A sad three per cent of respondents don’t use any source control mechanism at all!

Docker is the open source project that most respondents said they would like to contribute to, with 21% responding so indicating the popularity of the Docker open source project. Among the contributors, about 43% were independent contributors.

So what would you have voted for? We'd be interested to hear your opinions leave a comment below. 

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