I already had written about it, after Netflix announced they will provide some of their tools as open source. Now it happened. In its new 3.3 release Eucalyptus has integrated exactly these Netflix tools and offers more functionality for the first time in terms of availability and management for applications within a private cloud infrastructure. Furthermore, new Amazon Web Services (AWS) related functions are provided.
New features in Eucalyptus 3.3
Eucalyptus 3.3 was extended in addition to the Netflix tools with AWS-compatible features such as auto scaling, load balancing, and CloudWatch. With Auto Scaling rules can be created to support workloads with additional virtual machines automatically when a certain load limit is reached. Here, the mechanism is supposed to be exactly the same as on the public cloud infrastructure of the Amazon Web Services. Furthermore, it is now possible to scale workloads automatically to AWS.
Chaos Monkey, Asgard and Edda
The Chaos Monkey is a service running on the Amazon Web Services searching for Auto Scaling Groups (ASG) and randomly kills instances (virtual machines) per group. The software has been developed flexible enough that it also works on platforms other cloud providers. The service is fully configurable, but by default runs on ordinary weekdays from 09.00 clock until 15.00 clock. In most cases, Netflix has written its applications so that they continue to function when an instance suddenly having problems. In special cases this does not happen consciously, so that their own people have to fix the problem in order to learn from it. The Chaos Monkey only runs a few hours a day so that the developers can not 100% rely on it.
Asgard is a web interface that allows to control the deployment of applications and a manage a cloud. Netflix itself uses Asgard to control its virtual infrastructure on Amazon Web Services.
Edda is a service that Netflix uses to continuously retrieve its needed AWS resources via the AWS APIs. Edda can search through the active resources and find out the status. The background of Edda is that virtual instances in the cloud are constantly in motion. This means that they can fail and new ones need to be started. It’s the same with IP addresses that can be re-used by different applications. Here it is important to keep track of where Edda supported.
Netflix originally wrote these tools for the AWS cloud infrastructure. Through the open source release, and Eucalyptus adaptation, they can now also be used in a private cloud.
Cooperation: Eucalyptus and Amazon Web Services
In March 2012, the Amazon Web Services and Eucalyptus had announced a collaboration to better support the migration of data between the Amazon cloud and private clouds. The collaboration is structured differently. First, developers from both companies should focus on creating solutions to help enterprise customers to migrate existing data between data centers and the AWS cloud. Furthermore, and more importantly, however, is that customers should be able to use the same management tools and their knowledge of both platforms. In addition, Amazon Web Services will provide Eucalyptus with further information in order to improve compatibility with the AWS APIs.
The first fruits of this cooperation with the Eucalyptus Release 3.3 can now be carried. Eucalyptus approaches ever closer to the functions of Amazon Web Services. My theory, that the Amazon Web Services may use Eucalyptus to build CIAs private cloud, is not entirely unjustified.
Acquisition not unlikely
CEO Marten Mickos seems to come a little closer to his goal. During a conversation in June 2012, he told me that his first act as the new CEO of Eucalyptus was to pick up the phone, call Amazon and to express an interest in working together.
As I already wrote it in the article “Netflix releases more Monkeys as open source – Eucalyptus Cloud will be pleased” Netflix has played strong in the arms of Eucalyptus with the publication of its Monkeys. This will not least to strengthen the cooperation of Amazon Web Services and Eucalyptus, but make Eucalyptus for Amazon more attractive as takeover target.
Why I am of this opinion, I have described in detail in “Amazon acquires Eucalyptus cloud – It’s merely a matter of time“.