During this year’s Citrix Summit, we released Citrix CloudPlatform 4.5 (powered by Apache CloudStack). Citrix CloudPlatform (CCP) has long been touted by many as the most mature and robust option for building an Infrastructure as a Service IaaS cloud. This list of organizations using it helps to back up this claim (see graphic below). Version 4.5 takes the carrier-grade characteristics of an already great platform and turns it up to 11!
Great names like Disney and Autodesk really highlight how best of breed companies are choosing this technology. That being said, perhaps the most telling thing about the kinds of customers who are choosing CCP is how many can be categorized as telecommunications companies (telcos) or service providers (SPs).
CCP has been running at the heart of public clouds for companies like KDDI, Datapipe, NTT, BT and KT for years. During that time the team learned a tremendous amount about what’s really required to operate a cloud at scale with strict availability requirements.
Many of these learnings came together in the spring of 2014 when we kicked off the CCP 4.5 project. In planning for 4.5, we decided to attack this on a number of fronts:
- Deep analysis of issues – we reviewed feedback we had reported by Service Providers over the past 12 months and targeted specific remedies for the most important
- Improved upgrade – We improved and simplified the upgrade procedures for moving from one version to another, and along the way reduced the upgrade time for the Virtual Router by an order of magnitude. This is critical for an operational environment with real availability requirements.
- Adopted static code analysis – We used it to ferret out coding practices that could lead to latent bugs
- We put in place new code coverage tooling to highlight areas of the code that weren’t well tested so that we could target additional testing there
- Adopted more stringent code review processes – we put this measure in place to ensure that new code was always reviewed by multiple developers
- Improved automated testing – We made a massive increase in the number of automated test-cases that we run nightly
- Improved patch process – We’ve also overhauled and streamlined our patch release process to help us get the latest fixes out to customers as quickly as possible
- Synchronized Releases – We released CCP 4.5 and XenServer 6.5 on the same day — with both products supporting each other. This means that customers can use the latest hypervisor with the latest IaaS on day one
All these factors came together to ensure that CCP 4.5 is the best release that we’ve ever done and that it is the best possible choice for customers looking to run mission critical, carrier grade cloud infrastructure. We’ll be following up with more releases in 2015 that build on this to ensure that CCP remains the best choice.