Recently Iâ€™ve embarked down a course to get OpenStack up and running on the Raspberry Pi. Before we get too deep into the particulars, letâ€™s talk about why such a thing should be done. What could one gain by running OpenStack on the Pi? Who would use it? and more.
For me, there are a few reasons:
- Because Awesome!
- Cost, Power, Portability
- Education, etc
First and foremost, this is a project I undertook because wellâ€¦ it seemed just that, awesome. No other reason. What do I mean by awesome? Well, theyâ€™re Raspberry Piâ€™s which, while slick, can be quite boring unless you give them something to do. It also met some of my other requirements for â€˜awesomeâ€™:
- Use a new tool
- Learn a new thing
- Put something together in an unexpected way
In this case, I got to learn a bit about LXC, Docker, recompiling the kernel, and a bit about ARM, Raspian (the Debian derivative for the Pi).
Cost, Power, Portability
The Piâ€™s are cheap and relatively low power. Theyâ€™re also tiny. As in, one can fit a small cluster into a laptop bag and travel places with it. This makes things like running a training class or operating Hack Days at a local school much easier.
Education here, comes in a few flavors. As mentioned before, I get a bit of education in all sorts of new tools and things. However, what Iâ€™m referring to specifically, is an LXC / Docker setup on the Pi, in conjunction with OpenStack (or another cloud flavor) would make facilitating a temporary hackday / classroom setup extremely easy.
I am sure there are plenty of reasons (more than plenty) of reasons to go down this road. There are indeed lots of new options in the low cost / power market that would also be a bit easier to peruse as well (NUC, and the Intel / Arduino board). But then, none of those things are a Pi.