Cisco has made a name for themselves by selling network gear and servers to cloud providers across the nation, but seems to have finally come around to the idea that they may need to get on board the open source train if they have a hope of competing in the new IT market. Now, Cisco is making a foray into the world of open source by contributing to the building of Open Stack – an open source cloud project – and according to Lew Tucker, their chief technology officer, Cisco recognizes that the cloud is all about developers.
This is a big step for a company that has shied away from open source projects until now, and it appears that Cisco is finally going to make a move toward catering to developers rather than simply selling their products as a way to get ahead. Under a mandate of providing “everything as a service,” Cisco intends to provide Network as a Service (NaaS) to the Open Stack platform, something it hopes will help the project gain more traction. Currently, Open Stack has two components – Compute and Object Storage – but Cisco is convinced that network management is going to be something that the project will need in order to give developers the kind of support they require to design some of the best new APIs on the cloud market.
Cisco appears to be taking the route of spending money to make money, and for the moment appears to be going in the right direction. Support of Open Stack and other high-end cloud projects will only raise Cisco’s profile in the cloud community, something it will need as the cloud becomes more mainstream and competition for IT dollars begins to heat up across the board.