One of the main quality’s users love about OpenStack is that it’s a modular architecture with interconnected components with a foundation backing it to provide rapid development and expansion of features and services. To measure trends, improvements, and actual requests for functionalities; every year user surveys are conducted.
These surveys are a critical tool in closing the feedback loop between Open Infrastructure operators and the upstream contributors who are building the software. By sharing technical implementations, feature requests and software challenges, operators are directly impacting the development and roadmap of the open source software.
The OpenStack User Survey has been fielded since 2013, and the OpenInfra Foundation does annual analysis (August to August) to identify new users, uncover trends and better understand the architectural choices made by OpenStack users.
Organizations completing the 2021 OpenStack Deployment User Survey include CERN, the German Climate Computing Centre, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Societe Generale, Vingroup and Workday. Hundreds of additional organizations have requested to remain confidential.
The OpenStack Survey results
So, what does the 2021 user survey tells us? It was a pretty good year for OpenStack. Over 300 OpenStack deployments were logged this year, including a significant number of new clouds—in the last 18 months, over 100 new OpenStack clouds have been built, growing the total number of cores under OpenStack management to more than 25,000,000.
According to the OpenInfra Foundation, 79% of all OpenStack clouds are used in production, while 13% are under development and 8% are in the proof-of-concept stage. Over 200 deployments were recorded as interacting with another cloud. When asked which clouds their deployment interacted with, 53% of the respondents selected AWS, 40% selected Azure, 30% selected GCE, 34% selected another OpenStack private cloud, 13% selected an OpenStack public cloud and an additional 8% said other. Despite running multiple clouds, most respondents indicated that OpenStack powers more of their cloud infrastructure than any other platform.
The survey also shows a shift in deployment tools: 68 percent of OpenStack users use Container orchestration or a PaaS tool to manage applications on the OpenStack deployment while the other largest percentage uses Ansible as deployment tool.
The 2021 OpenStack User Survey revealed significant OpenStack growth over the last year. Mostly, the demands are being driven by modern use cases such as containers, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, 5G, network function virtualization (NFV), and edge computing.
And lastly, several new services have seen increased adoption. For example, according to the OpenInfra Foundation, the use of Ironic, a project that provisions bare metal, nearly tripled between 2016 and 2021. Other projects with growing traction include Octavia, which provides load balancing capabilities, Manila for file system sharing between instances and OpenStack Charms which provide rich life cycle management capabilities for services.
These are all interesting developments; mostly because OpenStack is growing along with the current technologies and developments within the cloud infrastructure market. Creating an infrastructure which future-proofs business models and application platforms!