#Opinion: Fight your own roots

Thank you, Red Hat. If I needed one more proof for your state of mind, you have delivered it to me.

The Advantage of Enterprise Linux over Community Projects

I totally get, why Red Hat is sending out such an email: They want to convice their potential customers of buying their Enterprise Linux. I actually second that – they need to pay their bills.

But this tone?

First of all: Linux IS a community effort. Even Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) is in great parts developed by a community inside and outside Red Hat. Linux on its own is community-driven, has always been and will always be.

Second: They are completely right in regard to TCO. The TCO is not defined by the list price, but by reaction times, quality of reactions, quality of support, etc. Absolutely right. But: That does not imply the usage of an Enterprise Linux. What is this, anyway? A vendor-locked version of Linux?

Third: What do I actually need an Enterprise Linux for, anyway, if I consider a cloud stack? Back in the days, when we were running our workloads directly on Linux, one needed something special, I get that. A linux with the ability to run for years, with awesome patching mechanisms avoiding downtimes.

But those times are gone, specificially for Container Workloads. They are running on top – or, to be more precisly, operated by – Kubernetes. And Kubernetes is not tied to one only machine, it works on a pool of resources. One can easily remove a worker node (or even a master node) from a running cluster, without affecting the workloads too much. This basically eliminates the need for an Enterprise Linux with awesome uptimes, a Linux (without Enterprise) would be good enough. Because Enterprise simply doesn’t matter anymore – your resource pool is breathing anyhow, all the time. Any modern community Linux would work just fine here!

There is no need for an Enterprise Linux anymore!

So, there you have it. This email is an evidence of fear. But is not your fear, although they want to scare you. It is Red Hats fear, it is Microsoft’s fear, it is the fear of those, who understand their Linux or their OS as the basis of everything. Truth is: Linux and any other OS are just commodity. They don’t weight as much anymore as they did back then.

And, if you think further about it, the same message is true for your (Vendor Locked) Kubernetes-stack. And for your (Vendor Locked) Cloud Foundry-stack. And for your (Vendor Locked) OpenStack-stack. What do you need them for? They basically offer the same functionality as the community version (give or take some special features who appear to just a very small minority), but they only run on Red Hats Linux, with Red Hats Storage, etc. – which typically is called Vendor Lock!

Featurewise, in regards to functionality, with respect to patching and fixing, the community versions are on the same level as their Enterprise cousins. But they don’t lock you in, and with the right software stack (read: VanillaStack), they even come with the last things that set those Enterprise Stacks apart from basic community projects: Commercial Support (with up to 24/7 availability) and easy-to-use integration. Which directly impacts the TCO – towards being more reasonable and affordable than compared to those of Red Hat products, for example.

Vendor lock always makes you pay more.

Then again: What exactly do you need your Enterprise Linux for? What would you attend such a webinar for? What exactly is your benefit, besides the nice swag you get?

Think of that.

Open as in Vendor-Lock

If you’re in the market for cloud software, specifically something based on Linux and Kubernetes, you’ll be penetrated by companies who claim their products would be open-source, and therefore would not lock you in.

Well, that’s a lie…

Let me explain that.

If you look at companies who claim to be the “biggest open-source company in the world” or “the biggest independent open-source company in the world“, their products are open-source. This means, one can look into their sources.

For most people, this implies it would impose no vendor lock on them. Because open-source. At least that is, what they interpret, when reading of “true open-source” or “open open-source”. Truth is, that this is a lie.

Obviously, Kubernetes and related technologies are open and actually impose no vendor locking on you. But if you were forced to run a specific Linux (which costs a lot and provides challenging subscription terms), then one would call this: A vendor lock.

Purposefully implemented vendor locks

This kind of vendor locking is considered to be very negative, since it is willingly imposed on a platform (Kubernetes or OpenStack or Cloud Foundry, just to name a few), which is actually open and on its own undemanding in regard of its underlying Linux flavour.

The same is true for something some companies call “Enterprise storage”, which typically is Ceph. Which is only running on these companies Linux distributions, opposite to what Vanilla Ceph is able to do. Or for company-specific versions of OpenStack or Cloud Foundry – all which are limited to the specific platforms.

The point is: These limitations are artifical. There might be reasons for doing that, but for whatever reason it is done – it still remains a vendor lock.

Open-Source != Vendor Agnostic

So, next time, when you look into one of their offerings, you should read what they actually say: “We offer you our heavily customized versions of those awesome vanilla projects, so you have to stick within our ecosystem”.

And you should remember, that “open-source” does not mean “vendor neutral” or “vendor agnostic”. These terms have nothing to do with each other – proprietary solutions can be vendor-agnostic and open-source software can be vendor-locking.

And you should consider deciding for a true open-source and vendor-agnostic solution. Which would be VanillaStack.

A symbol of freedom

To me, things as the channel tunnel are signs of freedom and peace. We should never forget how the world looked like 75 years ago.

Having this in mind, I enjoy doing business as a German in each European county, regardless of being a member of EU or not. And especially I enjoy doing business and meeting awesome people in the UK, where I’ll stay until sunday.

#europe #peace #business #ceo #cloud #cloudnative #cloudexcellence

Go and vote!

In September 1939, World War II began, causing a minimum of 60mio casualties. Just six years before that, in January 1933, the last free elections were held in Germany – allowing the Nazis to take over and to start their match towards total war.

European Flag, picture taken from https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Europe

When there is one thing to take away from that, it is to do the right thing: Go, and cast your vote at the European Elections this Sunday.

There is no sense in remaining at home or in trying to utilize the internet for any kind of outrage or hoping something will change without standing up for it: That will not change anything, because that does not matter in the end, that’s just noise.

Just go and vote, since the moment of truth is at the elections and if you want to convince people of your opinion, reach out to them and talk to them. One by one.

Vote on Sunday!

Life at Cloudibility (XIV):What makes us unique and why is worth fighting for it

logo_cloudibility_rgb_transparent_square_smallTL’DR:

Cloudibility is about mindset and culture, about respect and values. We will ensure it stays that way, we will focus on these aspects and will emphasize them even more, even if it might imply some pains. Because, it is worth it. We are worth it.

The long text:

At Cloudibility, we strive to be special. We try to live a different kind of mentality compared to more traditional corporations. We try to work in cross-functional, self-organized teams and with an “If it’s not there, then let’s build it”-attitude. Approaches like “we always did it that way” or “I am the boss and tell you what to do” are not part of our mindset.

But, what is our mindset instead?

Well, our mindset is the mindset of a Startup. We’re active minds. We want to create, shape and solve, instead of griping and moaning. We understand not everything might be in place or working out to our satisfaction – but we don’t see this as an issue, instead we try to set up and create the missing parts on our own, we try to iterate and deliver.

We value the freedom of every individual to learn, to understand and to improve – but we understand this freedom not as something which ends in itself, but something which can only be lived when we also work hard to ensure our stability as a company.

We love our customers, since they allow us to earn our well-deserved money – but we don’t fear them or simply do what they want us to do, instead we’re striving to support them the best we can and with the best outcome possible for them. Supporting our customers is way more than simply accepting tasks – it is about understanding our customer’s needs, seeing issues and solving them, even proactively and perhaps even without ever getting honored for doing so. It is not about sitting in meetings and simply being present, it is about ownership, acting and delivering results.

We love our colleagues and we love working with them, not against them. We’re not trying to “lead” them by expressing negative narratives or by imposing any kind of male dominance, instead we try find solutions and try to convince our fellow team members with arguments. Collaboration, not dominance, is the key for us – even if the better argument might not be our own argument.

It is also about the way we express ourselves – not aggressively or loud, instead being open and respectful to and with each other.

There are many more things that make up for the Cloudibility mentality, have a look at our Leadership Principles and understand them the way they are meant: As principles, to be weighted and prioritized against each other ever and ever again, in each and every situation we are confronted with – not every principle will be applicable to every situation, but it should give you something to think about and to act upon. And try to understand their implications when being lived.

And realize: We insist of living them.

What does this imply?

Cloudibility is very much about mindset, reflection and culture. It is about the way we want to interact, about the way we want to execute our daily business and about the way we want to see ourselves. Since we are growing, it becomes very important to stick to our convictions, to act instead of trying to react, to save ourselves from becoming a more traditional, hierarchically organized and executing company. Because, that’s not what we are and that’s not what we want to be in the future.

We believe in a more modern, agile and active approach to things. We believe in the power of teams instead of embracing those egoistic problem-solvers to be found quite often. We believe in a more substantial, more social, more ecological and more human approach of work and interacting, without being weak or exploitable or allowing others to weaken or exploit us.

And we will grow even more in the next months to come.

And that’s why we emphasize on culture and mindset. That’s why we feel like living and understanding our Leadership Priniciples is that substantial. And that’s why we favour mindset and culture over technical skills and existing expertise.

We are Cloudibility, and we will continue to be it!

Promised.

Kauflust (IV): Surface Go (English edition)

A smaller Surface Pro? Powerful enough to master all everyday office- and business-applications? Starting around 449,– EUR? Give me that Surface Go!

LRM_EXPORT_37065968901674_20180902_104605247

Surface Go with Type Cover, Surface Pen and mug of coffee

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Liebe Clara (*), …

(This is the German version of my Dear Clara (*), …-article I posted some minutes ago)

Ich bin nicht der Techniker-zu-Deiner-Verfügung

…ich bin nicht der Techniker-zu-Deiner-Verfügung, als den Du mich eventuell ansiehst, weil ich unter Umständen einige Informationen teile, vielleicht Dinge weiß, die Dich interessieren oder wir uns gegebenenfalls mal in der Vergangenheit getroffen haben, ein paar Worte miteinander wechselten oder uns gar beim Turniertanzen gemessen haben.

Wenn Du mich also im sozialen Netzwerk Deiner Wahl etwas fragst, dann gibt es kein Universum, in dem Du von mir erwarten kannst, dass ich Dir innerhalb von Minuten, Stunden oder sogar Tagen antworte. Du wirst Deine Antwort bekommen, jedoch nur zu einem Zeitpunkt, an dem es mir auch passt.

Nebenbei (auch wenn es sich vielleicht anders anfühlt): Ich bin nicht sonderlich aktiv in sozialen Netzwerken unterwegs, ich schaue da vielleicht jeden zweiten Tag hinein, habe keinen FB-Messenger installiert, ja ich benutze noch nicht mal die Standard-Apps für das jeweilige Netzwerk auf meinen mobilen Geräten und habe sämtliche Benachrichtigungen dieser Netzwerke abgeschaltet.

Deshalb tue mir bitte einen Gefallen: Erspare mir, von Dir im sozialen Netzwerk Deiner Wahl gestresst zu werden, und das noch nicht mal 48 Stunden nach Deiner Anfrage. Es wird nicht dazu führen, dass ich schneller oder qualitativ hochwertiger antworte, aber es wird definitiv dazu führen, dass Du dir von mir eine Breitseite und eine geharnischter Antwort einfängst. Und wenn Du Pech hast, dann blogge ich sogar darüber und wenn Du ganz viel Pech hast, rutscht mir sogar Dein echter Name raus, Clara. Deshalb: Frage und frage auch nach – Du sollst Deine Antwort auch haben. Erwarte sie aber nicht in Echtzeit oder zeitnah, deshalb frage lieber zeitiger. Erspare mir Deinen Frust und Deinen Stress, sonst bekommst Du das genau so zurück.

Danke Dir, Clara!

Beste Grüße,

Karsten

(*) Name aus nachvollziehbaren Gründen geändert

Dear Clara (*), …

I am not a Technician-at-your-Disposal

(Deutsche Version dieses Beitrags)

…I am not a Technician-at-your-Disposal, even though I am perhaps sharing quite a lot of information, perhaps may have quite a lot of knowledge in regards to things you are interested in and we perhaps met at some time in the past, had a conversation or two or even battled with each other in a ballroom competition.

So, whenever you ask me something in some social network, there is no world in which you would have the right to expect an answer from me within minutes or even days. I WILL answer your question, but at a point of time, when it fits into my life as well.

Additionally, although it might look differently, I am not following social networks very closely. I am looking into them not more often than every second day, I have no FB-messenger or similar software installed, I actually refuse to use the default applications for such networks and I have turned off any notifications from those networks (Twitter, Facebook, etc.).

Therefore, kindly hesitate to stress me in your social network of choice not even 48 hours after your inquiry. It won’t improve my reaction time, it won’t give you a better answer, but it will guarantee you my frustration and a harsh response. So, do me a favor, Clara: Ask me, but ask me in time. Expect an answer and perhaps remind me of that answer (you deserve it), but don’t bug me or lay your stress and frustration on me, since I will answer you in exactly the same way then.

Thank you, Clara!

Truly yours,

Karsten

(*) Name changed for some obvious reason