Feeds

Dell cuddles Canonical for big Ubuntu fluffer love

Credibility marathon

Top three mobile application threats

Dell is working with Canonical to help customers float Ubuntu-powered open-source clouds while also cozying up to developers.

The hardware maker, better known for flogging PCs and servers running Linux's chief OS rival Windows, is working with Canonical on plans to take the sweat out of setting up Ubuntu clouds on its data-hungry Poweredge C 1100, 2100, and 6100 1U-to-4U servers.

Dell's director of cloud software solutions John Igoe has promised The Reg that reference implementations for Dell's servers running the Amazon-cloud-ready Ubuntu will be ready in the "next few months".

The Ubuntu-based blueprints are being created so that aspiring fuffers outside the top-tier of web properties can implement clustered compute and storage clouds without calling on special services or customized products.

Dell had been talking to Greenplum to include its open-source business intelligence software tools in the planed stacks — at least, that was, before Greenplum's acquisition by EMC.

Hadoop, the open-source distributed computing and data storage framework, is also in the frame.

Igoe told The Reg in a recent interview that Hadoop "has a very major role to play", and could feature in Dell's open-source plans because of its scalability and customer base.

He noted however that Hadoop has been held back by its complexity — but "Dell could help solve that through partnerships".

Igoe works in Dell's Data Center Solutions Group that's home to the Dell super servers behind some of the web's biggest properties such as Bing and Salesforce.

Since Dell's acquisition of service provider Perot Systems, Igoe has been hunting down Perot employees experienced in Hadoop and other software.

Dell's work on an open-source comes as it announced pre-integrated server, networking and storage stacks. The company is targeting Java and Python applications in retail, gaming, and social media for the hardware. According to Igoe, Dell's avoided Windows because "it wouldn't fit".

It's the addition of Ubuntu to the hardware mix, though, that has really tweaked developers' interest in a company they'd normally associate more with churning out commodity hardware and flirting with Linux on netbooks.

"The one that gets their [customers'] attention is Canonical: we want to show people we are thinking outside the box," Igoe said. "Canonical has a credible solution with people, based on the Eucalyptus and Amazon cloud."

Ubuntu uses Amazon EC2 APIs and Amazon Machine Images in its server-based Enterprise Cloud variant. Ubuntu is also bundled with Eucalyptus, the open-source cloud infrastructure for server clusters which supports many different clients and is also compatible with Amazon's EC2 APIs.

Canonical claims 12,000 downloads of its cloud server, having worked with some customers on setting up their Amazon-liked clouds.

Igoe noted it has been difficult for Dell to gain credibility in software. Dell hopes to gain customers by offering modular software options instead of a single stack. The work with Canonical follows on the heals of the companies' collaboration tuning Ubuntu for netbooks.

Igoe called Dell's move into software a marathon, not a sprint, with acquisitions such as Perot providing a strategic step.

In a shot at IBM, Igoe claimed Dell can gain further credibly by offering a neutral offering because it's not bound by a legacy of the company's own proprietary server software. ®

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Captain Kirk sets phaser to SLAUGHTER after trying new Facebook app
William Shatner less-than-impressed by Zuck's celebrity-only app
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.