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Red Hat CloudForms

Product
The name of the base system (platform): Red Hat OpenStack Platform
Developers: Red Hat
Date of the premiere of the system: July, 2011
Last Release Date: 2019/02/08
Technology: Cloud Computing,  IaaS - Infrastructure as service,  PaaS - Platform As A Service - the Business platform as service

Content

CloudForms is the solution of Red Hat for creation of private and hybrid clouds and management of them, by means of infrastructure as service (IaaS, Infrastructure-as-a-Service).

OpenShift ― the cloud platform available in the form of service on the websites of Amazon and expected developers.

CloudForms allows to create quickly cloud services, scooping resources practically from where it is necessary: from the physical systems, the systems of virtualization, public clouds of the certified cloud providers of Red Hat ― Amazon EC2 Fujitsu IBM Savvis. CloudForms is not tied to the specific platform: the solution works at a basis of means of virtualization VMware, Microsoft Hyper-V and Red Hat.

Development History

2019: Red Hat Cloudforms 4.7

On February 8, 2019 Red Hat announced release of Red Hat Cloudforms 4.7, upgraded version of the complex scalable tools for management of IT infrastructures. CloudForms 4.7 offers expanded support of Red Hat Ansible Automation and additional abilities to integrate at the level of the equipment, simplifying control of IT-systems in hybrid cloud environments.

As the Gartner research company claims, "the focus in use of cloud computing at the enterprises was shifted towards hybrid and multicloud environments. By 2020 75% of the organizations will pass to one of two of these models".

According to Red Hat, for transition to hybrid cloud infrastructures corporate customers first of all are required to manage and control capability physical, virtual and private cloud environments. The released version of CloudForms helps to provide the unified and coordinated management with local and virtual IT resources, providing them to end consumers of IT services on the principles of self-service according to the set politicians.

Red Hat CloudForms is responsible for local components of IT infrastructure within a set of the solutions Red Hat for management of hybrid clouds, and Red Hat Ansible Tower implements functionality of automation during the work with public cloud services. Together two of these solutions form a single system of management of all components of a corporate IT landscape, providing process automation and standardization of system configurations, increasing the general stability and reliability of systems.

CloudForms 4.7 is more closely integrated with Red Hat Ansible Automation and allows to use directly more functions of automation, for example, to perform workflow (workflows) Red Hat Ansible Tower directly from the CloudForms interface that simplifies building of complex circuits of automation. The integrated opportunities of the solutions Red Hat help to accelerate deployment of IT-systems, at the same time increasing stability and performance of services.

Red Hat CloudForms 4.7 offers the improved integration tools with software solutions of suppliers of the network and infrastructure equipment, including platforms Nuage Networks Virtualized Services Platform (VSP) and Lenovo XClarity. As a result, CloudForms can be applied to management of both virtual and multicloud environments, and physical components of network and computing infrastructure. And the improved integration allows to execute preparation of physical components by analogy with virtual that considerably simplifies a final stage of preparation and operation of the equipment.

«
In conditions when transfer of applications in hybrid IT infrastructures became a priority task for many corporate customers, effective management of physical, virtual and private cloud components of such infrastructures becomes a necessary condition of successful transition to technologies of a hybrid cloud. Red Hat CloudForms 4.7 is focused on the solution of this task and intended for those who aim to use public cloud services in a tandem with local corporate infrastructure. The solution allows to increase controllability of data centers and at the same time to provide unity and coordination of management of all variety of local IT resources.
Joe Fitzgerald, the vice president of Red Hat for the direction of management systems[1]
»

2018: Red Hat CloudForms 4.6

The Red Hat company, solution provider with the open code, in March, 2018 submitted the next version of the CloudForms system. Thanks to automation as fundamental functionality of Red Hat CloudForms of version 4.6 helps to accelerate deployment and updating of IT systems and services. It occurs by process optimization of preparation of IT resources at increase in the general stability and performance of systems.

In the whole Red Hat CloudForms 4.6 develops the management concept multicloud environments on the basis of automation provided to CloudForms 4.5. The provided version offers expanded support of Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform and Red Hat OpenStack Platform at the level of means of the automated preparation of infrastructure components and scaling. The list of means Ansible extended, allowing to address them directly from CloudForms. In particular, CloudForms can execute the scenarios Ansible and also see and be connected to the IT resources unrolled by means of Ansible.

Besides, thanks to cooperation with producers of Red Hat CloudForms 4.6 hardware provides management not only with hybrid cloud environments, but also hybrid IT infrastructures now. In addition to virtual and multicloud environments, CloudForms of version 4.6 also supports detection of IT resources in physical infrastructures and management by them using the central panel. It allows administrators to control local computing powers, to analyze the impact of infrastructure changes on workloads and to solve problems of maintenance of infrastructure.

The Red Hat CloudForms 4.6 system is already available to customers with the operating subscription.

2017

Red Hat CloudForms 4.5

On May 4, 2017 the Red Hat company announced the version of CloudForms 4.5. She offers the approach to work with multicloud configurations based on technology of automation Ansible.

Transformation of corporate IT environments into the dynamic virtual infrastructures operating in the structure of corporate data centers and public cloud services complicates implementation of problems of self-service, regulation, ensuring compliance, resource management, billing and capacity planning. Red Hat CloudForms 4.5 simplifies and accelerates start of completely automated IT services which allow end users to manage independently resources throughout lifecycle with observance set the politician, at the same time increasing transparency and controllability regardless of location of resources.

Advertizing Ansible, (2016)

Ansible is the simple, powerful system of setup and deployment of IT systems without use of software agents intended for automation of the repeating actions using a simple and clear programming language. Ansible supports work with computing systems, network devices, applications and modern work benches, allowing to describe visually and well technology processes and components of IT infrastructure in scenarios of automation Ansible Playbooks which then are performed by "engine" Ansible.

Ansible is integrated into the structure of Red Hat CloudForms 4.5. This step simplifies deployment of Red Hat CloudForms in corporate environments, depth and width of a scope of IT services are increased by the built-in automation equipment of the Red Hat platform.

Result of integration of Ansible into the structure of Red Hat CloudForms 4.5:

  • The directory of services – each element of the directory may contain the scenarios Ansible Playbook for work with the OpenStack Orchestration templates (Heat), Amazon Web Services (AWS) CloudFormation Microsoft Azure Stack, VMware vApp and other components now that allows administrators to create and start quicker various services for end users.
  • Regulation – administrators can use the scenarios Ansible Playbooks for application of the different IT politician models that simplifies conformity assessment of the unrolled systems, control of security and resource optimization.
  • Ansible ecosystem – in Red Hat CloudForms it is possible to use more than 10 thousand ready scenarios Ansible Playbooks and more than one thousand integration modules which are available as IT services and can be used for application the politician and ensuring compliance.

«
The advanced opportunities of automation provided mass distribution of Ansible and strong support from community, having led this technology to class of strategic. Therefore integration of Ansible into the version of Red Hat CloudForms 4.5 became an obvious step on the way to control automation by multicloud environments. Red Hat CloudForms offered an arsenal of cloud management tools earlier, and with the built-in support of Ansible we do a big step forward, offering clear language of automation and considerably facilitating creation of the solutions intended for deployment, maintenance, optimization and security in hybrid and multicloud environments.

Joe Fitzgerald, vice president of Red Hat and head Management
»

Red Hat is going to publish CloudForms 4.5 on the Red Hat Customer Portal portal until the end of May, 2017.

Red Hat CloudForms 4.2

Red Hat updated the platform of management of hybrid clouds of CloudForms, having released release 4.2 which gives to users enhanced capabilities. CloudForms allows the organizations to manage several types of clouds, including public and private and also platforms on the basis of containers.

CloudForms 4.2 is based on ManageIQ Euwe release open source which debuted on December 20, 2016 Red Hat purchased ManageIQ in December, 2012 for 104 mln. dollars.
The senior director on product management of Red Hat CloudForms Geert Jansen explained that between ManageIQ open source and CloudForms with providing technical support on a commercial basis are available some distinctions. "CloudForms includes commercial library of generation of PDF and is based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux instead of CentOS" — he explained.
Other difference between ManageIQ and CloudForms consists in lifecycle of software. Releases of ManageIQ appear approximately each six months. Jansen noted that after an exit of new release of ManageIQ technical support of the previous release and release of corrections for it stop.
"On the other hand, according to our model of a corporate subscription releases of CloudForms are supported for three years, allowing clients to use the same release up to three years" — he told.

Advanced metrics and data on events belong to the improved features of release of CloudForms 4.2 for Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform. Jansen explained that in a case with Microsoft Azure now with the help API- the Azure Resource Manager interface additional metrics, including data on RAM, a disk and network input-output gather. In a case with Google Cloud Platform the new version of the platform uses Google the Cloud Monitoring API interface for monitoring of use of resources now.

"Both improvements allow to make more exact reports and CloudForms add new features in clouds, such as payment and demonstration of the consumed resources (chargeback and showback), support of managing directors the politician and disturbing signals, recommendations about the choice of resources and the analysis of trends of their use" — Jansen told

He also noted that collection of a payment for the consumed resources in relation to containers appeared in CloudForms 4.1. It allowed to set quotations on use of containers in reports on payment and demonstrations of the resources consumed in the past. He added that CloudForms 4.2 improves this functionality, entering additional report types and filters, including use of the tags and tags synchronized with the Red Hat OpenShift platform.

CloudForms represents not only technology of management of hybrid clouds, but also a crucial element of strategy of Red Hat aimed at management of OpenStack clouds. CloudForms is included in Red Hat OpenStack Platform where it is the main platform of management of transactions as with cloud resources which are represented by OpenStack, and with infrastructure resources at which OpenStack works.

Jansen reported that in CloudForms 4.2 there are many new features for management of OpenStack, including management of tenants, support of regions and zones, assignment of the floating IP address, management of backup and data recovery and also their instant pictures, visualization of topology and additional support of response to events (eventing). Besides, he noted that network management and new means of integration of storage for management of storage of objects and blocks are added.

CloudForms is also crucial element of strategy of Red Hat focused on management of containers. Jansen noted that CloudForms is included in Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform as technology of management of transactions.

2016: Red Hat CloudForms 4.1

On June 30, 2016 the Red Hat company submitted the version of CloudForms 4.1 management systems for hybrid "clouds" which got support of Google Cloud Platform Hat CloudForms 4.1[2].

According to the statement Red Hat, the version of CloudForms 4.1 offers additional flexibility and freedom of choice at the organization of a hybrid environment using cloud platforms Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services.

Representation of a role of devices and architecture of CloudForms, (2016)

In this version support of software-defined networks SDN is implemented that expands possibilities of application of the solution Red Hat as the unified management system for software-defined data centers. By means of integration with Ansible Tower the version of CloudForms simplifies automation of complex IT processes, extends on simpler, focused on cloud use conditions.

CloudForms is the complex open platform of management of a physical, virtual and cloud environment, supports technologies of containers. The solution facilitates deployment of modular services, offering a self-service portal and providing a full stroke of management of services, the politician of compliance, both for a newly created IT environment, and for the operating configurations helps to reduce risks due to determination. CloudForms offers the developed means of capacity planning, reporting and submission of accounts for use of resources.

The support of the Google Cloud Platform environment developed by participants of the dug-out ManageIQ project in cooperation with Google company provides managements of lifecycle of virtual machines of Google, including work with politicians and cost determination.

Support of SDN networks

Red Hat expanded a functional scope of the platform of management, moving from computing components towards networks and storage systems. CloudForms 4.1 provides network management in the OpenStack Networking environments (Neutron) Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform and Microsoft Azure. New SDN- the means of CloudForms developed in cooperation with Nuage Networks provide detection and network element management and also evident representation of their communications with other parts IT infrastructures, told in the company.

Integration with Ansible Tower

The built-in integration tools with Ansible Tower open ample opportunities for program process automation of preparation and providing complex applications and services. In particular, CloudForms 4.1 can perform the automation tasks written in the Ansible language, addressing Ansible Tower. Integration allows to use the scenarios Ansible for work with the directory of CloudForms services that, according to developers, simplifies configuration of modular services.

Other additions of CloudForms 4.1

Expanded support of Microsoft Azure, including support of images, events, metrics, functions of preparation on the basis of private images and also complete management of lifecycle is provided. Besides, CloudForms 4.1 implements functionality of introspection of VM and the containers SmartState Analysis on the Microsoft Azure platform, simplifying transition to methodology of DevOps and the principles of self-service and also supports application in public cloud environments the politician and rules of control of compliance which were available only in local configurations earlier that allows to limit use of foreign software.

The upgraded version of a system offers:

  • the updated model of charge of costs, including setup of currencies and price levels;
  • functions for work
  • * Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform,
    • SmartState Analysis,
    • cards of intensity of use of resources,
    • support of permanent volumes of data;

  • the optimized interface of self-service, including the interface of a basket of purchases and the remote console.

Red Hat CloudForms 4.1 is available to loading to subscribers.

«
We constantly hear from customers that they are required to increase quickly capability hybrid "clouds" and, as a result, the single system of management for physical, virtual and cloud environments is necessary. It also offers CloudForms. Now CloudForms not only supports the leading cloud platforms, but also simplifies automation of IT transactions due to integration with Ansible.

Joe Fitzgerald, vice president for products and services of Red Hat
»

2015: Red Hat CloudForms 4

On December 9, 2015 the Red Hat company announced release of the version of Red Hat CloudForms 4 - management systems for hybrid cloud environments.

In this version of a system support of Microsoft Azure and expanded management of containers are organized.

Representation of Red Hat CloudForms
  • Support of Microsoft Azure. Following a rate of recently announced partnership of Red Hat and Microsoft, CloudForms provides with management of workloads and resources of a cloud platform Microsoft Azure.

  • Support of containers. The growing plans of the corporate sector for transfer of workloads to rails of container technologies require enhanced capabilities of introspection of architecture. CloudForms 4 provides transparent management of workloads in the environment of OpenShift Enterprise by Red Hat and infrastructures on the basis of OpenShift, allowing to control all communications in a chain from a container to components PaaS, and then to level IaaS or a physical host.

  • Expanded means of self-service and operation. The improved panels of monitoring and the chart CloudForms help with clearer and evident understanding of interrelations between the different cloud platforms and container hosts working in the mode of normal operation.

Red Hat CloudForms supports automatic search and resource analysis for operational control of platforms Amazon Web Services Hyper-V Microsoft Azure OpenShift by Red Hat OpenStack, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization and VMware. The software solution provides the centralized automated application corporate the politician of compliance to requirements and regulations of resources.

«
CloudForms 4 marks an important step on the way of evolution of management tools hybrid clouds. Support of containers provides the unified management of broader spectrum of cloud platforms. We are also glad to provide new fruits of strategic partnership of Red Hat and Microsoft in the form of long-awaited support of the Microsoft Azure platform. Besides, Red Hat CloudForms 4 is an all-around champion among the dug-out management systems for cloud environments on number of the supported hybrid platforms.
Joe Fitzgerald, vice president for products and services of management of Red Hat
»


Open ManageIQ project

Red Hat CloudForms 4 is the third version of a management system created on the platform of the open ManageIQ project which was started by Red Hat in June, 2014 based on source texts before ManageIQ acquired company. The ManageIQ project integrates developers, service providers, system integrators, representatives of the academic environment and end users and creation of the innovation unified platform of management for cloud environments sets as the purpose. From the moment of release of the latest version of CloudForms the ManageIQ project received a number of significant additions from the following participating organizations: Booz Allen Hamilton is the code for integration of ManageIQ with the open cloud broker Project Jellyfish who was provided in 2014 as the tool for more smart, simple and intuitive management of cloud services. Project Jellyfish formed a basis of the new user interface of self-service in Red Hat CloudForms 4.

Nuage Networks – the connected module CloudForms for management of software-defined networks of SDN, will be a part of the next version of CloudForms. Produban – IT department of Grupo Santander bank considerably improved possibilities of the ManageIQ project on charge of costs and drawing of accounts.

Availability

Red Hat CloudForms 4 is available to loading to all customers with the corresponding subscription.

«
Thanks to integration of management tools of Red Hat CloudForms and the Microsoft Azure platform, an ecosystem of Red Hat and Microsoft offer the customer big flexibility and the bigger choice. We are glad that expansion of strategic cooperation of our companies helps customers to cope with modern calls of the hybrid heterogeneous world.
Corey Sanders, director of the computing Microsoft Azure direction
»

«
We are glad that could work successfully with Red Hat and community ManageIQ over implementation of control functions by software-defined networks of SDN in the CloudForms system. Expanding use of cloud platforms, our customers look for methods to ask and consolidate operational management and to make so that it met to their level requirements to networks. Using the automation equipment and abstraction of network components of our Nuage Networks Virtualized Services Platform (VSP) platform, the solution CloudForms provides the centralized orchestration of computing and network resources in complex cloud environments.
Sunil Khandekar, director of Nuage Networks
»

2012: CloudForms

Red Hat announced in June, 2012 commercial release of the long-awaited CloudForms IaaS-platform and at the same time providently requalified it to the open platform of management of hybrid clouds.

Originally CloudForms was positioned as the standard cloud IaaS-platform. The forefront of the company concerning CloudForms and OpenShift was discussed in May of last year, but from those in the field of cloud computing there were many other projects among which it should be noted at least two cloud platforms open source - OpenStack and CloudStack which were more focused on wide community of developers.

Red Hat is a platinum organization member of Openstack Foundation and one of the main donors in OpenStack.

In April, 2012 Red Hat reported that it will create an own cloud IaaS-distribution kit based on OpenStack. The platform of management of hybrid clouds of CloudForms which will support OpenStack is also intended for work with the PaaS-offer (the platform - as - service) to Red Hat under the name OpenShift.

Originally the OpenStack project was developed by Rackspace and NASA, but now it is sponsored by more than 175 companies, including Dell, Intel, AMD, Rightscale and IBM. Public support to OpenStack was given even by VMware which integrated with Piston Computing in creation of the OpenStack level for VMware Cloud Foundry.

During a four-hour teleconference on June 6 the director of Red Hat of technology Brian Stephens recognized that the functionality of CloudForms is partially blocked with other IaaS-solutions based on an open source code, especially in spheres of self-service and automation, but accented that CloudForms is the comprehensive open platform for management of hybrid clouds including management of applications.

According to him, CloudForms gives significantly more, than just automation over virtualization that is a total characteristic of basic IaaS-platforms. 'Overlapping on a number of functions is quite possible, however everything that you can make using some other offers, is to build cloud automation over the virtualized environment and to turn it into a cloud environment'.

CloudForms gives, for example, the chance to create hybrid clouds, managing them and the applications working in the mixed private and public cloud infrastructures.

With CloudForms users can construct the hybrid cloud integrating a private cloud with some entrusted public cloud like Amazon or Rackspace. They can also use the same Application Blueprint and politicians for many private clouds, public clouds and technologies of virtualization, speak in Red Hat.

CloudForms represents a part of an IaaS-stack of Red Hat, including Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Enterprise Virtualization, JBoss Enterprise Middleware and a stack of Red Hat Storage.

CloudForms is based on Red Hat DeltaCloud API open source, but will support completely the OpenStack distribution kit from Red Hat.

Notes