Salesforce.com, the preeminent SaaS (software as a service) company, is reportedly joining the open source OpenStack project.
The Wall Street Journal quotes Graham Weston, co-founder and chairman of Rackspace, which is one of the original OpenStack companies, to report the news. The move would be a major endorsement of the open source platform by yet another major technology company. Salesforce.com would join the ranks of Cisco, IBM, Intel, Red Hat, Dell, HP and dozens of others who have thrown support behind the open source infrastructure as a service (IaaS) project.
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Salesforce's addition to the OpenStack project represents one of the first major SaaS companies to join OpenStack. The news would be welcome to OpenStack backers, who fight criticisms that the project is still maturing and not yet ready for enterprise adoption. Enthusiastic backers of the project boast that it could one day be as important of an open source project for hosting IaaS clouds as Linux has been as an operating system.
The Journal article notes that the move could help Salesforce attract new developers to work on its platform. Forbes reports that as part of the move, Salesfroce applications will be available on OpenStack servers.
OpenStack has steadily been adding new supporters in recent weeks. For example, Oracle announced that it had become a member of the OpenStack Foundation, pledging not only financial support, but also committing to ensure its cloud offerings were compatible with open source standards.