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Why Open Source Software Is the Key to Hybrid Cloud

date: May 14, 2019

In previous posts, we’ve talked about the benefits of the hybrid cloud. We’ve also offered some guidance about making the transition to the hybrid cloud. So you know about the “whys” and “hows” of moving to the hybrid cloud.

But those are really just two parts of a trifecta. The third part, and the topic of this post, focuses on one of the main keys to success with hybrid cloud: open source software.

The age of open source has arrived

As a recent article in Linux Journal observed, attitudes about open source software have significantly evolved over the last 30 years. Once regarded quite dubiously by mainstream enterprises, open source is now freely accepted and utilized by many of the world’s most successful organizations, including Netflix, Apple, and the United States government. Some of the leading tech companies that were early enemies of open source are now among its most strident and impactful supporters.

Back in 2009 the open software market was forecast to top $8 billion within a few years. But the market blew past $11 billion in 2017, and the current MarketsandMarketsforecast predicts that the open source software services market will hit nearly $33 billion by 2022. That will represent a compound annual growth rate of almost 24%.

So the age of open source has truly arrived. Case in point is Googles recently announced partnering with many open source service providers, including DataStax. But why is open source so essential for hybrid cloud success?

Enabling hybrid cloud success with open source software

Consider the definition of hybrid cloud: A computing environment that incorporates infrastructure from multiple platforms and data centers.

That single, simple sentence encapsulates the power of the hybrid cloud. Because it enables organizations to utilize the optimal set of resources for their application workloads, hybrid cloud offers businesses and public sector agencies the ability to maximize the benefits of the cloud while minimizing costs.

How DataStax leverages open source

DataStax offers the only active everywhere database for hybrid cloud. It is, quite simply, the best available distributed database for hybrid cloud environments. But without open source, the DataStax solution wouldn’t be possible. That’s because DataStax utilizes the power of Apache Cassandra™, an open source, distributed, NoSQL database.

Cassandra provides five key benefits that make hybrid cloud and DataStax Enterprise (DSE) so powerful:

  • Scalability: Cassandra has the ability to both scale up (adding capacity to a single machine) and scale out (adding more servers) to tens of thousands of nodes.
  • High availability: Cassandra’s masterless architecture enables the quick replication of data across multiple data centers and geographies. This feature powers the always-on benefit offered by DataStax.
  • High fault tolerance: Cassandra provides automated fault tolerance. Cassandra’s masterless, peer-to-peer architecture and data replication capabilities support a level of system redundancy that ensures full application speed and availability, even when nodes go offline. And this capability is fully automated—no manual intervention is required.
  • High performance: In today’s business climate speed is essential. Cassandra architecture minimizes the instances of high latency and bottlenecks that so often stifle productivity, and frustrate both internal users and customers. This is further enhanced in DSE, which offers more than 2x the performance of standalone open source Cassandra.
  • Multi-data center and hybrid cloud support: Designed as a distributed system, Cassandra enables the deployment of large numbers of nodes across multiple data centers. It also supports cluster configurations optimal for geographic distributions, providing redundancy for failover and disaster recovery.

Simply put, the very best database solution for the hybrid cloud just wouldn’t exist without open source software. And that’s just one example among countless others that serves to illustrate how essential open source is in enabling the best benefits of the hybrid cloud.

Remember: there’s no such thing as free open source software

As everyone likely knows, the acronym “FOSS” stands for free, open source software. But putting open source software to work for your organization’s hybrid cloud initiative will not be free. As this ComputerWeekly article observed, “Open source is not ‘free’ because every deployment has a cost associated with it, but what it does allow for is choice, and an organization can go down one of two routes in adopting it.”

Those two routes, or choices, in implementing open source are:

  • Install, manage, and support the open source software yourself and incur the training and learning-curve costs
  • Pay a professional open source services provider to implement and support the open source solution

And sometimes, a combo of the two approaches might be best.

But even though FOSS isn’t free, it can provide you with a wonderful range of lower-cost options for transitioning to hybrid cloud. And you can at least get started with free training on DataStax Academy and you can also download DataStax Distribution of Apache Cassandrafor free.

Apache Cassandra™ Architecture (White Paper)

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