April 21, 2012, 7:20 AM — It's turning into a mud-slinging affair in the cloud computing industry.
The familiar debate of open source vs. proprietary IT offerings now seems in full swing in the cloud, and the rhetoric shooting back and forth between some of the major vendors is intensifying. The most recent round really picked up a few weeks ago when Citrix announced it would bring its CloudStack cloud building platform to the Apache Software Foundation, creating a competing model to OpenStack. Before that, OpenStack had been gaining momentum in the open source cloud worlds. While Citrix's move was initially seen as a competition to OpenStack, both companies have more recently taken aim at a common foe: VMware.
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A VMware executive, not to be outdone, wrote a fairy tale themed blog post calling competitors "ugly sisters" and comparing VMware to the Prince Charming and Cinderella that will run off with the customers. The same day as the blog post, a Citrix official wrote a rebuff blog post titled "vCloud or vPumpkin?" predicting VMware's demise at the hands of customers who choose open source cloud deployment models instead. "I'd suggest that the only thing [VMware has] in common with Cinderella is the fact that the fantasy image you've so carefully created is evaporating before your eyes," wrote Peder Ulander of Citrix.
Officials from Rackspace, which is one of the biggest backers of the OpenStack project, have also drawn a line in the sand, though this time aiming their ire at Amazon Web Services. "Amazon's proprietary system cultivates customer lock-in," Rackspace CEO Lanham Napier was quoted as saying in an interview. "We think OpenStack will be the technology standard and our fanatical support will be the service standard. We're trying to create a better service."