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OpenStack Superuser

Today, we’re announcing the beginning of something new and exciting for OpenStack.

Superuser is a new online publication dedicated to the experiences of individuals who are running OpenStack clouds of all sizes, across all industries.

Topics will range from very actionable how-tos, case studies and architecture profiles to tackling less-tangible, strategic initiatives such as culture change, dev/ops, cost and vendor management.

Why are we launching a new publication?

One of the biggest benefits of the OpenStack community is the opportunity for knowledge sharing and collaborative problem solving among peers. There is a growing community of systems administrators, engineers and cloud architects and who are now running OpenStack in production and are eager to share their stories, compare notes, and have frank conversations about the problems they’re encountering and how to solve them.

Because the community is so large, distributed and fast-moving, it’s easy to duplicate efforts, and valuable information doesn’t always make it from one user group meetup conversation to the next design summit session. Based on feedback from the user community, we think there’s an opportunity for the Foundation to help aggregate content and create a destination specifically for OpenStack operators.

Our goals are to:

1) engage and help create a forum for the operator community

2) aggregate the vast amount of content being created and shared in various locations

3) promote and recruit participation for our community resources like documentation, the operations and security guides, training, and ask.openstack.org.

How will the publication be delivered?

Superuser will be an online publication that lives at superuser.openstack.org.

We aim to produce approximately three unique pieces of content per week — including news stories, topical feature stories, case studies, video interviews, and Q&As with operators — supported by a breadth of curated content that will be syndicated from the blogs/channels and our user community, ecosystem and analyst community.

How can you get involved?

We’re seeking the involvement of community members like you to help us shape the editorial direction, identify leads, make connections and contribute content. Your job will be to help us listen, and to make sure we’re giving a platform to the right voices.

Send us an idea for a story, a link to something the community should know, provide feedback to editor@openstack.org.

Subscribe to our newsletter, where we’ll periodically send you a digest of the latest Superuser happenings.

We’ve enlisted the help of volunteers in the community who have experience running OpenStack clouds to serve as members of our Editorial Advisory Board.

If you’re interested in helping shape the content, please subscribe to our editorial team mailing list[link]. This is where we will discuss story ideas, review editorial calendars, and solicit feedback from our editorial advisors and the user community.

The road ahead

“This publication was built to chronicle the work of superusers, and their many accomplishments personally, professionally, and organizationally. Our goal is to amplify their impact. Over the coming weeks and months, we’ll bring superusers together to share their stories, and in so doing help shape this new economy in a way that benefits us all.”

Check out Jonathan’s inaugural Superuser post, where he talks more about why Superuser was started, and what’s in store for the community and the publication.

And above all, we’re proud to introduce Superuser!

Open Mic Spotlight: Masayuki Igawa

MasayukiThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Masayuki Igawa is a software engineer at NEC Solution Innovators, Ltd. He has worked there for 15 years on a wide range of software projects, and developing open source software related to Linux kernel and virtualization. He’s been an active technical contributor to OpenStack since the Grizzly release. He is an OpenStack Tempest core member. You can follow him on Twitter at @masayukig.

1. How would you explain your job to your grandmother?

I’d like to say, “I’m contributing code to OpenStack!”
Because my grandmother really knows computer/internet/cloud/open source!

Sorry, it’s a joke… :-P

2. Get creative — create an original OpenStack gif or haiku!

OpenStack has unlimited possibilities
Beautiful and elegant UI/UX is
Coming soon

3. How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you lear in college? On-the-job?

I’m self-taught, but also have on-the-job training about code. I started coding when I was 12 years old. I copied many BASIC codes from magazines by my hands. I studied bio-chemistry at university. So I spent some time cutting and pasting DNA of e.coli, actually. And on-the-job, I learned languages such as assembly, C, Java, Ruby, and Python.

4. Where is your favorite place to code? In the office, at a local coffee shop, in bed?

Starbucks is my favorite place. And, my office is good but there are a lot of harmful noises for coding. So, holidays are good for the office.

5. What is your favorite example of OpenStack in production (besides yours, of course!)

My favorite is ConoHa VPS (https://www.conoha.jp/). This is not “cloud”, though. But this is one interesting OpenStack deployment because it’s very different from Amazon web services.

Open Mic Spotlight: Lucas Gomes

lucasgomes_headshotThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Lucas works for Red Hat on the OpenStack Ironic project as a core developer. He was born in Brazil, but currently lives in Dublin, Ireland. When not playing with computers he likes traveling, hiking and reading fantasy books.

1. How would you explain your job to your grandmother?

Well… I can definitely try.

Grandma, let’s think for a moment that you’re a computer, a special type of computer… you’re a computer that make cakes and today you’re going to try a new cake recipe written by me.

My job is to write that cake recipe, and for that I start by listing out all the ingredients that my cake needs. Then, below that, I write a step-by-step guide that tells you what to do with those ingredients: mix, mash, stir, bake, etc…when I’m finished, I’m going to hand my new recipe to you (the computer) and you’re going to follow the instructions to make me a cake.

I think that might work.

2. What new OpenStack projects do you think will have a significant impact on the cloud market in the next year?

I would say TripleO. In my opinion, one of the biggest hurdles to OpenStack adoption is how difficult it is to install and configure it. TripleO is here to solve that problem, but it goes beyond. It’s also about upgrades, continuous integration, deployment and a reference architecture. I think that having a fully integrated, upstream way to install, upgrade and operate OpenStack will make a big impact.

3. What does “open source” mean to you?

For me, open source is the right thing to do. It gives you access to a community that is working towards a common goal and not wasting time reinventing the wheel. So, the open source methodology just works, and works better.

4. Where is your favorite place to code? In the office, at a local coffee shop, in bed?

I quite enjoy working from home and I think I’m more productive because of the lack of interruptions. But I also like the fact that once per week I can get to meet with other Red Hat folks in the Dublin office to socialize and to learn a tad more about what everyone is currently working on.

5. What publications, blogs, mailing lists, etc do you read every day?

The openstack-dev mail-list. For the rest I mostly use Google Plus. It’s nicely integrated with my email interface, so I pretty much rely on following the right people that are relevant to the areas I care about.

Open Mic Spotlight: Simon Pasquier

simonpasquier_headshotThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Simon has been an OpenStack Active Technical Contributor since early 2013 when I joined the XLcloud project. XLcloud is a collaborative project (funded by the French government) that involves academics and companies. It aims at demonstrating the feasibility of High Performance Cloud Computing platform based on OpenStack. More specifically, we’re looking at remote rendering, autoscaling, capacity planning and plenty of other cool stuff. Prior to this, my background was with Linux systems and networking. It proved to be a perfect fit for OpenStack where, sometimes you have to get your hands dirty to make it work. :-) 

1. What new OpenStack projects do you think will have a significant impact on the cloud market in the next year?

For me, Heat is going to get a lot of attention because orchestration is a no-brainer when you deploy complex infrastructures in the cloud (like XLcloud does for virtual clusters). The Heat team is definitely committed to building a great service, and also very careful to integrate with other initiatives such as TOSCA.

Most of all, the guys are very responsive and friendly with newcomers.

2. How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you learn in college? On-the-job?

I studied mostly C and C++ in college but I’ve learned much more during my professional life. I’ve used different languages before Python (Ruby, Perl, Javascript) and I find it very helpful. To be a good developer, you don’t need to know a language at your fingertips, but rather take out the best of every community.

3. What does “open source” mean to you?

For me, it is all about collaboration and not simply sharing the code. What is important is to recognize any contribution: coding (of course) as well as testing, bug reporting and documentation. Making decisions in the open is also a key component.

Even though there’s a lot of space for improvement, OpenStack encompasses this vision and pushed the “open source” paradigm one step further (see how it has inspired other projects such as OpenDaylight). Finally working on open source projects is a great way to improve your technical and human skills.

4. What is your favorite example of OpenStack in production (besides yours, of course!) 

At the first OpenStack Rhone-Alpes meetup, Gavin Brebner from HP Cloud did a great presentation explaining how the Q&A team was testing, qualifying and stressing their infrastructure. The talk was really enlightening as he listed all the challenges you have to tackle for keeping a large cloud up and running.

5. What publications, blogs, mailing lists, etc do you read every day?

Planet OpenStack and the openstack-dev list, of course. :-)

But I’ve got plenty of other blogs in my reader:

Open Mic Spotlight: Joshua Hesketh

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Joshua Hesketh is a software developer for Rackspace Australia working on upstream OpenStack. He works from his home in Hobart, Tasmania. Joshua is currently President of Linux Australia, previously the co-chair for PyCon Australia and a key organizer for linux.conf.au. He has an interest in robotics having recently completed a degree in mechatronic engineering. Check out his blog here

1. Finish the sentences. OpenStack is great for _______. OpenStack is bad for ______.

OpenStack is great for freedom. OpenStack is bad for proprietary competitors.

2. How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you lear in college? On-the-job?

I’m self-taught – which might explain some of my bad habits! I learned a bit during university while picking up most of my knowledge from being involved in open source projects.

3. What does “open source” mean to you?

To me, open source is a superior development model in which everybody wins – from the users, to the developers and businesses involved. Much more value can be gained from using open source where you can build on the shoulders of giants, collaborate on complicated problems and avoid vendor lock-ins. As users you have the flexibility to use a product to its fullest potential whilst, as developers, having the ability to modify and customize it as needed.

4. Where is your favorite place to code? In the office, at a local coffee shop, in bed?

I love working from home. I get to wake up to this view every morning. When I’m not at my home office I spend hours at my favourite cafe, Villino, working while enjoying a flat white.

joshview

5What drew you to OpenStack?

One of the big drawcards for me is the community within OpenStack which is really special. It’s such a large and active project, with hundreds of developers all working in unison. The sense of community is reflected in everyone being nice, approachable and willing to go out of their way to help solve your problem. Everybody is working towards the same goal – to better OpenStack.

This is one of the great success stories of the project – being able to scale its developer base so well. Granted, there are still issues in the getting started pipeline as a consequence of size, but overall the project is very well managed. I am a very big fan of the structure and operation of the OpenStack Foundation. The membership models and egalitarianism are very well set out.

Open Mic Spotlight: Steve Martinelli

steve_martinelliThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Steve Martinelli is an OpenStack Active Technical Contributor and a Keystone Core Developer located at the IBM Canada Lab. He primarily focuses on enabling Keystone to better integrate into enterprise environments. Steve was responsible for adding OAuth support to Keystone and is currently adding Federated Identity support to Keystone. In his spare time he also contributes to OpenStackClient as a Core Developer. Though usually swamped with code reviews, his summer Wednesday nights are reserved for playing in the IBM softball league. You can follow him on Twitter @stevebot

1. Get creative — create an original OpenStack gif or haiku!

Here’s a haiku:

Code, test, submit patch.
Oh no, forgot to rebase.
Jenkins, I failed you.

If we’re talking gifs, I can’t compete with: http://openstackreactions.enovance.com/.

2. How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you lear in college? On-the-job?

I learned to code at school, but I’ve learned how to support, test, and build projects while working. When learning a new language, I avoid using books. I generally use an online tutorial to get a development environment up and running, then have the API handy while I poke around. When getting ramped up on an existing project, like Keystone, I find that going through the code, documentation, and running the test suite with a debugger enabled is enormously helpful.

3. What does “open source” mean to you?

My inner developer wants to say … ‘Free as in Beer, Speech and Love’: http://www.flickr.com/photos/joshuamckenty/6747269389/

But, I’ve learned that it’s much more than that. ‘Open source’ software can drive and accelerate an industry. It can ensure many companies agree upon a standard, and move on to the more interesting aspects of what the technology can do.

4. Where is your favorite place to code? In the office, at a local coffee shop, in bed?

It depends on what I’m doing that day. If it’s something that requires a lot of thinking, then I like to work from my desk at home, where it’s relatively free of distractions, and very quiet. If I’m just dabbling in code, or working on something more ‘mechanical’, then I’m good as long as I have a place to sit.

 5What is your favorite example of OpenStack in production (besides yours, of course!) 

I really like what the folks at CERN are doing. They are really pushing for Keystone to have Federated Identity support. Plus, who doesn’t like smashing subatomic particles together at nearly the speed of light?!

Open Mic Spotlight: Sascha Peilicke

Sascha PeilickeThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Sascha Peilicke is a cloud software engineer for SUSE, where he works on the company’s OpenStack, Crowbar and SUSE Cloud business areas. He is also an open SUSE community member, core contributor and package/maintenance update reviewer. He resides in Nuremberg Germany. Follow him on Twitter @saschpe

1. What random or unique items are in your bag or backpack right now?

Headphones, an umbrella and an air pump. Nothing can go wrong with these.

2. Where is your happy place? Favorite place to visit, vacation, decompress?

The hammock on my balcony – I just installed it yesterday again after temperatures in Germany surpassed 19 degrees Celsius.

3. What publications, blogs, mailing lists, etc do you read every day?

A whole lot, I’d say. I am following a range of mailing lists covering OpenStack (of course), openSUSE, Go, Python, Django, and general Linux. On the other hand, I’m a heavy (Tiny Tiny) RSS user and read a long list of IT industry and developer blogs.

4. What do you think OpenStack will be used for in 20 years, 50 years!?

It will provide just about everything as a service by then. It will be feature-complete with VIMaaS (VIM as a Service) and end the long-raging editor wars.

5. If you couldn’t be a developer, what would your dream job be?

Bar owner next to the Mediterranean Sea. Ideally at the Côte d’Azur or Liguria (Italy).

Open Mic Spotlight: Charles Beadnall

charlesbeadnall_headshotThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Charles is currently VP of Engineering at GoDaddy. Previously, he was responsible for the ad and personalization platform at Yahoo!, and before that was in charge of infrastructure at Metaweb, and systems architecture at VeriSign. Connect with him on LinkedIn here

1. What new OpenStack projects do you think will have a significant impact on the cloud market in the next year?

Neutron, Ironic and Anvil. Neutron improves and standardizes the way we manage and interact with networked devices. Ironic completes the compute platform: not all workloads are optimized for virtualization. Anvil does a good job filling the installation gap for large deployments with packaging and standardization of OpenStack itself.

2. What does “open source” mean to you?

Open source means constant re-evaluation and optimization. Leveraging a community to streamline code and prevent the commercial software bloat: Linux vs. Windows.

3. What is your favorite example of OpenStack in production (besides yours, of course!) 

Yahoo! since I pulled the team together and they continue to push the envelope with scalability and stability.

4. What do you think is the single most important factor for the success of OpenStack users in 2014?

Getting more hosting companies to adopt and provide OpenStack API-compatible services.

5. What drew you to OpenStack?

I was initially involved at a previous company in an evaluation of Eucalyptus, CloudStack and OpenStack. At the time, Eucalyptus was endorsed by Amazon and CloudStack had the largest stable production deployments. OpenStack had an active, growing and inclusive community and high levels of testing. We chose OpenStack at that point and subsequently at GoDaddy as well. Hindsight is 20/20 – the OpenStack community and capabilities have definitely grown faster.

Open Mic Spotlight: Ryan Brady

ryanbradyThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

Ryan Brady lives near Jacksonville, NC with his wife and 2 children. He enjoys running and woodworking. He’s a Senior Software Engineer at Red Hat where he works primarily on the TripleO project for OpenStack. Follow him on Twitter @rjbrady

1) How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you lear in college? On-the-job?

I started out tinkering on my own. I got my first professional programming job while serving on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps. Through both college courses and writing a lot of code on the job, I learned a lot and continued down the path I’m on now. I’ve been very luck to work with very talented programmers over the years who taught me many things I couldn’t find in a textbook. I’ve also continued tinkering on my own time for fun working on embedded devices and web projects. I feel like I’m still learning something new every week.

2) What does “open source” mean to you?

Freely available to view, modify and distribute. I think it applies to more than source code, but that is debatable.

3) Where is your favorite place to code? In the office, at a local coffee shop, in bed?

I love to work at home. Most of the time it’s in my home office, but during the spring and fall I love to work for short periods of time from my back porch. The lack of a commute allows me a little extra time every day to devote to development and has the obvious economical and environmental benefits.

4) What is your favorite example of OpenStack in production (besides yours, of course!)

I was very impressed by the deployment at CERN to help process data from the LHC.

5) What drew you to OpenStack?

My initial draw to OpenStack was to investigate it for software development and testing. I was impressed by what I saw and when I was offered the chance to work on it full time, I immediately said yes.

Open Mic Spotlight: Ghe Rivero

1gw1qZzThis post is part of the OpenStack Open Mic series to spotlight the people who have helped make OpenStack successful. Each week, a new contributor will step up to the mic and answer five questions about OpenStack, cloud, careers and what they do for fun. If you’re interested in being featured, please choose five questions from this form and submit!

After ten years as a system administrator in a university data center, Ghe joined StackOps in early 2012 to work on a solution for managing your own clouds and those of third parties effortlessly with OpenStack. His first contributions to OpenStack can be traced back to 2011 in neutron project (quantum, by then) and working on the OpenStack Debian packaging team. After that, in late 2012, he became part of HP as a cloud automation and distribution engineer mainly focused in TripleO and Ironic projects. He works from home in Salamanca, Spain, and loves outdoor activities like hiking and cycling, photography and traveling. You can get in touch with him on Twitter at @GheRivero.

1) What drew you to OpenStack?

I first met OpenStack during a virtualization project for some web services. Plain virtualization was ok, but didn’t fulfill all of my desires. So while looking for cloud solutions, OpenStack crossed my path and I fell in love with it. It was free, open and having the backup of great companies was a plus. But what really caught my attention was a growing community willing to welcome new developers. The OpenStack community is one the most enthusiastic I’ve ever met, with all of us working for different companies and collaborating.

2) Where is your favorite place to code? In the office, at a local coffee shop, in bed?

It all depends on the task I’m dealing with. I love coding by night in my standing desk at home, but in office hours, I really like going to an old library. The silence and calm of the place help me to focus and forget about almost everything. I almost get locked in a couple of times because I lost track of time!

3) What does “open source” mean to you?

It’s the best place to start working on a project, be recognized for your efforts, work in community and share your knowledge and ideas. What I really like about is that in spite of it starting as a computer movement, it has spread to many others places. We can start talking about open culture, with the copyleft and creative commons licenses, open data, Wikipedia and all kind of siblings, and even open democracy with the Iceland’s new crowd-sourced constitution. Openness is everywhere, and the right way to do things. I can’t imagine where we’d be by now if someone would have patented the fire and started charging for it when it was discovered.

4) How did you learn to code? Are you self-taught or did you lear in college? On-the-job?

I learned some basic coding skills in college, but in my previous job as a sysadmin I was not very fond of that and tried to avoid it, and delegated as much as possible. After some pitfalls, I decided to take matters into my own hands and start working on some free software projects (GNOME desktop and Debian) and start learning not only about coding but also about community.

5) What new OpenStack projects do you think will have a significant impact on the cloud market in the next year?

OpenStack is a pretty mature project despite being only three years old, so the core functionality is the keystone for a growing ecosystem around it, but it’s getting more and more complicated to be installed and operated, so projects like TripleO and Ironic will have a great impact during the next year.

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