OpenStack Decides to Remove Hyper-V From Essex Release

02/07/2012 06:03 pm ET | Updated Apr 08, 2012

OpenStack, the largest collaboration on open source cloud computing in the world, decided to remove the code that supports Hyper-V despite a statement from Microsoft that pledged a "commitment" to working with OpenStack to resolve the issues with the unmaintained and broken code. The code would have allowed OpenStack users to deploy OpenStack on a cloud infrastructure that leverages the Hyper-V hypervisor. The code will be removed from OpenStack in conjunction with the release of Essex, the next software release, scheduled for the second quarter of 2012. The OpenStack change log justifies the removal of the supporting code for Hyper-V as follows:

HyperV has been unmaintained for several releases now. The unit tests are superficial, we have no way to test it, noone has stepped forward to maintain it, and for a very long time, we've not had any reports that it works. Furthermore, many improvements have been made across other hypervisor drivers that have not been done in the HyperV driver, so even if it worked, it would only expose a subset of the functionality that the other drivers do.

The change log indicates that "even if it worked," Hyper-V would lag significantly behind the testing process specific to "other hypervisor drivers that have not been done in the HyperV driver." The removal of the code will not impact any production deployments insofar as Joshua McKenty, CEO of Piston Cloud Computing and member of OpenStack's Project Policy Board, commented: "I don't know of any production deployment of it. I don't know of any active development deployment of it."

The more salient issue highlighted by the decision to remove Hyper-V is the lack of adoption of OpenStack by companies with Windows based cloud infrastructures. As noted by James Staten, Senior Analyst at Forrester Research, however, the lack of adoption of OpenStack in conjunction with a Windows Enterprise license is unsurprising given that a company building a cloud on an open source framework is not particularly likely to have an enterprise license for Windows based cloud software. Nevertheless, the removal of Hyper-V illustrates how companies with Windows based cloud infrastructures have yet to experiment with adding OpenStack to their IT environment as an additional cloud operating system, even for pilot or research purposes.

OpenStack currently features the support of 149 companies and over 2300 individuals, with user groups in Australia, Austin (TX), Boston, China, Egypt, France, Indonesia, Japan, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, South Korea and Russia in addition to a Spanish language users group.