Dell Demonstrates Commitment to Open Source Software, Developer Communities

Project Sputnik , initiated to create a developer laptop, will result in an official Dell product in Autumn 2012

August 8, 2012
  • Project Sputnik , initiated to create a developer laptop, will result in an official Dell product in Autumn 2012
  • New partners, technologies to accelerate customer cloud development and value from big data

Dell recently announced the expansion of three open source software and cloud computing initiatives:  the formalisation of Project Sputnik resulting in a Dell product in autumn 2012, its Dell’s Emerging Solutions Ecosystem to include Pentaho and Datameer, and enhancements to Dell’s OpenStack-Powered Cloud Solution and the Dell | Cloudera solution.

Dell to Officially Launch Project Sputnik

Originally a six-month exploratory pilot to create an Ubuntu-based developer laptop, Dell is taking Project Sputnik from pilot to product this autumn.  At that time the company plans to deliver an official developer laptop based on the Dell XPS 13 with Ubuntu 12.04LTS preloaded, available in select geographies. Made possible by an internal innovation fund, the system will offer developers a complete client-to-cloud solution. The included software will allow developers to create “microclouds” on their laptops, simulating a proper, at-scale environment, and then deploy that environment seamlessly to the cloud.

“Project Sputnik is a great example of the employee-driven innovation we built Dell’s incubation programme to enable,” said Nnamdi Orakwue, executive sponsor of the Dell incubation program and executive assistant to Michael Dell. “This project represents the first of many new ideas Dell employees will test with customers or partners through the program, and we look forward to supporting Sputnik to be successful as it becomes a product this autumn.”

“Since we announced project Sputnik a little over two months ago, we have continued to be amazed by the amount and quality of interest and input we have received,” said Barton George, project Sputnik lead and director Dell’s web vertical marketing. “By listening to developers, Dell can provide them with solutions and products to help make them more productive and allow for greater innovation.”

New Partners

As a new member of Dell’s Emerging Solutions Ecosystem, Datameer has completed Dell’s certification process with its Datameer Analytics Solution (DAS) that enables business users, analysts and data scientists to access, analyse and visualise massive amounts of data. Dell is offering DAS in conjunction with its Apache Hadoop solutions.

Pentaho joined the Ecosystem with its Business Analytics Solution, which couples data integration with business analytics to easily access, integrate, visualise, explore and mine business data. Datameer’s business intelligence platform uses a spreadsheet user interface; while Pentaho leverages a graphical extract, transform and load (ETL) environment for creating and managing Hadoop MapReduce jobs.

“With our partner programmes, we can meet customers where they are,” said John Igoe, executive director, Dell open source Cloud and Big Data Solutions. “For those with in-house developer expertise, Emerging Solutions Ecosystem partners can help quickly help fill gaps in your cloud or big data taxonomy.  These cloud and big data solutions are key to the future of IT, so Dell is committed to bringing these and future technologies to enable customers’ to quickly and cost effectively stand up OpenStack cloud or Hadoop clusters.”

New Technologies

To help customers build cloud infrastructure, Dell’s OpenStack-Powered Cloud Solution is now available with additional server, networking and services options, and in additional regions including the UK, Germany and China. Along with OpenStack Essex, customers can buy with Dell 12th generation PowerEdge servers including the R720, R720XD, or PowerEdge C servers; PowerConnect or Force10 switches; services from Dell, Canonical or Mirantis.

To quickly stand up a big data cluster, the Dell | Cloudera Solution is now available with additional server, networking and services options, and in the UK, France, Germany and the Netherlands. Along with CDH4, customers can buy this solution with Dell 12th generation PowerEdge servers including the R720, R720XD, or PowerEdge C servers; PowerConnect or Force10 switches; services from Dell and Canonical.

Dell SecureWorks recently leveraged this solution, which includes Cloudera’s distribution of Apache Hadoop running on optimised Dell PowerEdge C2100 servers, and delivered with joint service and support along with the Dell Crowbar software framework, a Dell-developed installer to speed and ease bare-metal deployments. These combined resources helped SecureWorks accelerate the deployment of a robust Hadoop environment by more than six months, and helped to slash the organisation’s storage per gigabyte costs from seventeen dollars to 23 cents.