But cost and complexity woes remain as public cloud adoption easily surpasses private cloud sales
Up to 80 percent of IT pros in the UK have moved or are planning to move some of their workloads onto OpenStack, according to a study by SUSE.
But despite this heady uptake, those quizzed are also worried about how difficult it is to install private cloud and OpenStack, and if they’re going to suffer vendor lock-in.
A lack of OpenStack skills in the market is also a cause for concern amongst IT professionals in the UK, with 89 percent of UK respondents claiming this lack of skill-sets is making them reluctant to choose private cloud options.
SUSE conducted just 110 interviews in the UK for its study, nowhere near enough to get a full snapshot of OpenStack in the UK in 2016, but 451 Research’s OpenStack investigation last summer backs up the SUSE study’s claims about a lack of OpenStack skills.
451 found that running cloud on an OpenStack distribution is more expensive than running commercial cloud with firms such as VMware, Red Hat and Microsoft, citing the extra cost that has to be factored in to hire skilled OpenStack engineers.
“Finding an OpenStack engineer is a tough and expensive task that is impacting today’s cloud-buying decisions,” said Owen Rogers, analyst at 451 Research.
But SUSE thinks private clouds are the future for many enterprise workloads, even those that are business critical, according to SUSE UK manager Danny Rowark.
“This new report clearly demonstrates that UK businesses are keen to adopt private cloud,” said Rowark.
“With cost as a primary motivator for UK businesses to move to the cloud, an open source solution can play a key role in enabling organisations to implement a private cloud solution – reducing costs, driving innovation and agility, as well as providing freedom from vendor lock-in.”
But the tide seems to be going against private cloud, for now, which is bad news for OpenStack vendors.
Last month, IDC found that revenue from public cloud infrastructure sales grew by almost 26 percent to $4.6bn (£3.21bn) in the third quarter of 2015, beating private cloud infrastructure sales, which only grew 18.8 percent.
Also in January, findings from a Synergy Research Group study claimed that 2015 was a year where the growth rate for public Infrastructure and Platform as a Service (IaaS/PaaS) services hit 51 percent, outgrowing the private and hybrid cloud segment, which grew at 45 percent.
And so it falls onto SUSE and its peers to sell hard the benefits of OpenStack in 2016, benefits such as flexibility and custom-tailored platforms, whilst removing the fears of vendor lock-in, complexity and cost.