Free ‘Introduction to OpenStack’ class offered

OpenStack is a great open-source cloud. It has broad industry support. Indeed, it’s hard to find a major technology company that doesn’t back OpenStack. There’s only one little thing wrong with it: It’s a nightmare to pick up and deploy.

I go to major cloud and open-source conferences a lot. I can always count on many, if not most, of the companies there looking for experienced OpenStack staffers. This starts with techs and goes up to cloud architects and every job in between.

Because of the demand for OpenStack professionals, The Linux Foundation, in partnership with edX, the nonprofit online learning destination founded by Harvard University and MIT, is offering a free Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) OpenStack class: LFS152x – Introduction to OpenStack.

This class will cover OpenStack deployment, management and scaling.

To keep current with their profession, sysadmins of all stripes must have at least basic knowledge of cloud technologies, especially OpenStack,” said Linux Foundation General Manager for Training and Certification Clyde Seepersad, in a statement. “We knew edX was an ideal partner to help increase the pool of talent qualified in OpenStack by providing a platform to make high-quality education easily accessible to people looking to build rewarding careers managing OpenStack clouds.

LFS152x, Introduction to OpenStack, provides an in-depth primer on OpenStack. This course is designed for IT professionals who want a high-level overview of OpenStack and to gain the knowledge required to determine whether OpenStack cloud solutions may meet the IT needs of their organizations. It also serves as a first step for individuals who eventually want to take the Certified OpenStack Administrator exam. In addition, this course helps anyone who wants to set up a small scale OpenStack test environment to gain experience working with OpenStack.

The course covers:

● The origins of OpenStack: Where does it come from and how can you contribute as a developer to the project?

● How to deploy OpenStack: Setup your own lab environment and deploy OpenStack on Ubuntu and CentOS with DevStack and Packstack, respectively.

● How to deploy a virtual machine from Horizon: Get the steps and components that lead to a working and accessible virtual machine.

● An introduction to managing OpenStack from the command line.

● Scaling out your OpenStack cloud by adding Software Defined Networking, object storage, compute nodes, high availability and more.

“Skills development is a key success factor for the OpenStack community,” said Heidi Bretz, director of business development and alliances for the OpenStack Foundation. “The COA program is helping solve this problem, and efforts like the Linux Foundation’s Introduction to OpenStack are a great way to bring the technology to a wide, global audience of professionals interested in developing skills for the next generation of IT careers.”

The course’s cost? Zero.

It includes an introduction with course guidelines followed by seven chapters, each with a short quiz at the end. A final exam is also required in order to complete the course. Students may take the complete course at no cost, or add a verified certificate of completion for $99.

The self-paced course starts October 12. Pre-registration is now available.

It will be worth your time and effort. OpenStack, which used primarily for private clouds, is growing at an unprecedented rate. 65% of OpenStack deployments are now in production. That’s a 33% increase from the previous year.

The demand for individuals who have experience managing this cloud platform has been accelerating. According to the 2016 Open Source Jobs Report from The Linux Foundation and technology job site Dice, 51% of hiring managers say experience with OpenStack and other cloud technologies are driving open source hiring decisions.

This is the third edX MOOC offered by The Linux Foundation. Its first course, Intro to Linux, has reached more than 600,000 students globally and continues to grow in registrations. The second, Intro to Cloud Infrastructure Technologies, became available in June.

Is it worth your time? Let me put it to you this way. The cloud is IT’s future. If you expect to make a living in IT, and you don’t already have cloud skills, at a minimum should should take the Into to cloud course and you should seriously consider taking the OpenStack class. Even if you expect to make your living from Azure, Amazon Web Services, or some other cloud service, OpenStack may still lie along your cloud computing path.

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