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Daichi Nakamura,Cloud Administrator, Nishiki University IT

OpenStack Personas

Nishiki University

  • Daniel Yip (IT Director, Nishiki University IT)
  • Daichi Nakamura (Cloud / System Administrator, Nishiki University IT)
  • TBD User (Researcher using Central OpenStack)
  • TBD User (Researcher managing their own OpenStack?)

"OpenStack is awesome, but you've to be an expert to operate and manage it"

Daily Horizon Usage

30 minutes


Ibaraki, Japan

Nishiki University

Nishiki University is a mid-size university focused on research. They have a mid-sized IT infrastructure that runs many mission-critical applications. They are frequently on the cutting edge of new technologies as they are used as part of the course curriculum and for graduate research studies. They value solid, industry standard technology backed up by vendor support that provides stability, reliability, and security.

How do you use Horizon Today?

Hmmmm, I don’t use Horizon all that much, there are a few things that are easy to do in the GUI - like getting an overview of things. For most things, I use the CLI. The end users do use Horizon quite a bit, for things like spinning up instances and uploading files.

What are your main responsibilities?

I am responsible for operating our OpenStack based private cloud that provides compute and storage resources to researchers at the university.

How do you use OpenStack today?

We use it to analyze lots of research data. We’re a university and have a lot of physicists and other scientists working with huge amounts of data that need a lot of compute resources. We’re also testing some production workloads.

Who are the users of your cloud?

So, there’s more than 100 active users and roughly 35 research projects running on its OpenStack cloud. That research runs the gamut – from analyzing how computers understand text, to conducting hardware research. Some of them submit their jobs to an admin, and we make sure it gets done. Some of the other users have access through Horizon, so they can experiment a bit more -- these are the more developers types, not the scientists. People really appreciate the service; those who use it are really starting to depend on it, which is exciting for us to see.

Are you involved in the OpenStack Community?

I wouldn’t say I’m ‘involved.’ I follow the [operator’s] mailing list and some blogs. I’ve contributed code before -- when we found a bug and patched it. More recently, I've helped with the Operator's User Guide and Security Guide for OpenStack.

What are the key obstacles that you see with OpenStack Today?

We’ve had a few bumps along the way with issues that come up that are new to us. There isn’t always documentation, probably because OpenStack is new, so some of the problems we see haven’t been seen by a lot of other people. That means I have to experiment on my own to solve problems, but you can usually get help from the mailing lists. I do wish sometimes there was more documentation of specific solutions, especially around networking.

Status: Draft

Data source: OpenStack and non-OpenStack Customer interviews

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