Sean Roberts, director of technical program management at @WalmartLabs, delivered the news last night at an OpenStack 6th birthday celebration. It was an informal gathering of more than 200, organized by the SF Bay OpenStack group on Meetup and held at the headquarters of Datera in Sunnyvale, Calif.
This isn’t about a big corporation trying to muscle in on open source. Walmart has made a serious push into DevOps in recent years. And Roberts is also a leader in the OpenStack community at large; he’s been a board member and remains a project leader, and he helped organize major events such as the OpenStack fourth-birthday party in 2014.
In arguably bigger news, yesterday’s party included cupcakes. There were also five-minute lightning talks about various OpenStack subjects, which is when Roberts gave his OneOps spiel, but … cupcakes!
OneOps Unstops DevOps
OneOps originated with a three-person startup of the same name, which Walmart acquired in 2013. Judging by Roberts’ statement that the company has used the platform in production for three years, Walmart put OneOps to work almost immediately.
The result has been a transformation of Walmart’s software development, “especially the dot-com part of the business,” Roberts said.
OneOps is software for managing the lifecycle of an application — one practical effect being that it makes it easier to move an application from one cloud to another. It does this by modeling the cloud environment on its own, so developers don’t have to primp the app for the specific environment of, say, Google Cloud Platform or IBM Cloud.
That’s one of the downsides to the public cloud: lock-in. If you get all cozy with, say, Amazon Web Services (AWS), you can become dependent on its APIs and architecture. It can be difficult to move applications to another cloud such as Microsoft Azure.
OneOps can also be used for orchestrating OpenStack, which could make the cloud platform easier for operations to deal with. “People complain about problems managing Day 1 and Day 2 implementations of OpenStack. Everyone complains about it. I did at Yahoo,” Roberts said, referring to a past job.
So, Roberts and others are thinking that OneOps’ development could be accelerated by moving the project under the OpenStack umbrella. The idea is still germinating. Roberts said he’ll be presenting it to OpenStack user groups, and he’ll also bring the idea to OpenStack’s midcycle operations meetup, which starts Aug. 25 in New York.