Apache CloudStack 4.1.0 emerges from incubation

More contributors are lining up to support to the open source project, improving its odds against rival OpenStack

The Apache CloudStack project today announced Version 4.1.0 of the CloudStack, signaling that the cloud orchestration platform continues to thrive since emerging from the Apache Incubator in mid-March.

The 4.1.0 release includes news features such as an events framework, API-request throttling, and Amazon Web Services-style regions. It also includes major changes in the codebase, aimed at making the platform easier for developers, along with a new structure for creating RPM/Debian packages and the full adoption of Maven as a build tool.

This new release of CloudStack should be heartening to supporters of the platform, which has been down a long and winding road since being acquired by Citrix in 2011 -- then handed it off to the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) last year. In March of this year, the ASF approved CloudStack as a TLP (top-level project), helping the open source cloud software effort further establish its independence from Citrix.

When Citrix submitted CloudStack, most of the contributors to the code base were the company's own engineers. Since then the project has garnered more help -- much from users of the software. At the end of March, 164 contributors had made 16,795 commits to the code base, representing 1,161,748 lines of code; it now has had 17,933 commits made by 184 contributors, representing 1,668,112 lines of code, according to the Black Duck Ohloh repository of statistics about open source projects.

The influx of contributors is key for CloudStack as it takes on rivals such as OpenStack, which currently has over 1,000 contributors, and Eucalyptus, which has seniority over the other two platforms and boasts very tight technical ties to AWS. The jury is still out as to who is winning that battle (or if anyone can "win" at all).

The new release of CloudStack includes a laundry list of new features. Among them is the new Events Framework, which provides an event bus with publish, subscribe, and unsubscribe semantics. Also included is a RabbitMQ plug-in that can interact with AMQP (Advanced Message Queuing Protocol) servers.

CloudStack 4.1.0 also includes L3 router functionality in the Nicira NVP plug-in, including support for KVM. Additionally, there's an API-request throttling capability, intended to prevent attacks via frequent API requests.

Other features include egress firewall rules for guest networks; the ability to resize root and data volumes; a reset SSH key to access VMs; support for the EC2 Query API; and autoscaling support in conjunction with load balancing devices.

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