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Definition

CloudStack

Apache CloudStack is an open source infrastructure as a service (IaaS) platform that allows IT service providers to offer public cloud services. CloudStack can also be used by businesses that want to provide their own private cloud and hybrid clouds services on-premises.

CloudStack includes a compute function that allocates virtual machines (VMs) to individual servers, a network function that manages switches to create and manage logical networks, object and block storage systems, an image management function and a cloud computing management interface that supports all of the software stack’s components.

CloudStack allows administrators to deploy and manage large networks of virtual machines running the following hypervisors:

  • VMware
  • KVM
  • Citrix XenServer
  • Xen Cloud Platform (XCP)
  • Oracle VM server
  • Microsoft Hyper-V

Users can manage their cloud deployments through a command line interface (CLI), a RESTful API or Web interface. CloudStack also provides an application program interface (API) that's compatible with Amazon EC2 and S3 to facilitate hybrid cloud deployments.

CloudStack, which was initially developed by Cloud.com, was acquired by Citrix in 2011 and turned over to the Apache Software Foundation in 2012. Development is now governed by the Apache Foundation with code available under the Apache 2.0 license. As of this writing, Apache CloudStack's most recent release is 4.12.0.0.

CloudStack features

CloudStack includes features for:

CloudStack vs. OpenStack

Technology and design-wise, CloudStack and OpenStack are very similar, even though they were each created to meet different goals. OpenStack began as an open source project in 2010 by Rackspace Hosting Inc. and NASA. At the time, Rackspace was developing a storage component for use in its public cloud, and NASA was developing a compute component for its private cloud.

In contrast, the goal of CloudStack has always been to enable service providers and enterprises to create and operate public or private clouds with capabilities equivalent to Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2).

CloudStack vs. CloudMonkey

CloudMonkey v6.0.0 is a rewrite of the original CloudStack tool in Go programming language. CloudMonkey can be used as both an interactive shell and a command line interface for simplifying CloudStack configuration and management in Windows, Linux and Mac OS X environments.

This was last updated in July 2019

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