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From Paul Querna <>
Subject [PROPOSAL] Libcloud Project
Date Tue, 27 Oct 2009 06:59:36 GMT

I would like to propose incubating the existing Libcloud project to
join the ASF:

Proposal  Wiki: <>

Libcloud is a unified Python API around many common cloud services
provider, and I believe it could benefit greatly by joining the Apache
Software Foundation.  I also believe the ASF needs more Python
projects, and more projects involved in the developing cloud
infrastructure.  We still need a few mentors, so feel free to signup

We would appreciate feedback and comments on the proposal.

Full proposal is bellow.



Libcloud, a unified interface to the cloud


libcloud (<>) is a pure python client library
for interacting with many of the popular cloud server providers. It
was created to make it easy for developers to build products that work
between any of the services that it supports.


    * Provide unified API for manipulating servers instances across
many hosting providers who provide an API to manipulate instances.
Current API includes: list, reboot, create, destroy, list images, list

    * (future) Provide utilities for manipulating and creating server
images in many formats. (See the independent Stacklet project for

    * (future) Provide unified API for storing large objects on
popular hosting provider storage APIs.


While there are some projects to create open standards for
interoperability within the cloud, most have failed to gain widespread
adoption. Libcloud takes the approach of exposing a unified API to
cover multiple vendor's APIs, and in the future to support standard
APIs, assuming they become prevalent.


There is a strong need in the developing cloud infrastructure for a
community supported, high quality, and vendor independent tool set for
managing servers and their resources. When new servers are just an API
call away, traditional infrastructure models are changing quickly.
Having a good library built around Apache's values and tradition will
enable new server infrastructure to evolve much more quickly.

Initial Goals

Libcloud is an existing open source project, with patches from many
different contributors. We view the moving to Apache as a way to
improve this community, and look into future APIs around creating
server images and large object storage.

Current Status

Libcloud is already open source under the ASL 2.0:

    * Libcloud Website <>
    * Libcloud Mailing Lists <>
    * Libcloud Source Control <>


Libcloud has involvement from members of both the ASF and other open
source projects. Communication is driven by both IRC and E-Mail lists.


Currently libcloud has several contributors, but not a large user
community other than a few companies. We would like to increase our
userbase as part of the incubator process.

Core Developers

Alex Polvi who wrote most of the original code is familiar with open
source from working at OSUOSL and at Mozilla. Tom Davis drove much of
the re factoring of the initial code base. Jed Smith, Ivan Meredith,
Jeremy Orem, Jerry Chen and Paul Querna (ASF member) have all
contributed mainly to developing provider specific drivers.


Currently there are not many Apache communities involved with cloud
computing or python based infrastructure. We believe introducing such
a community is a good thing for the Apache Software Foundation.

Known Risks

Orphaned products

libcloud is being used actively by Cloudkick to develop services. It
is a core part of our ongoing infrastructure improvements.

Inexperience with Open Source

libcloud was open sourced in July 2009, during OSCON. Core
contributors include former employees of Mozilla and an ASF member.

Homogenous Developers

Much of the initial development was done by Cloudkick, but much of the
core design was re-factored by the community, and many of the drivers
for each provider have been contributed by 3rd parties.

Reliance on Salaried Developers

The majority, but not all, of the developers are paid by their
employer to work on libcloud at this time.

Relationships with Other Apache Products

Libcloud doesn't share many attributes with existing Apache projects
due to it being in Python and addressing a new need.

A Excessive Fascination with the Apache Brand

Libcloud project seeks to build a last community around cloud API
interoperability, and is not fascinated with any short term gains of
being associated with the Apache Brand.


TODO: links to related material on Cloud APIs/interop (?)

Initial Source

Initial source is contained completely inside the libcloud github repository.

External Dependencies
    * zope.interface
    * For Python =< 2.5, a JSON Parser such as SimpleJSON is required.


Uses standard Python APIs for SSL/HTTPS.

Required Resources

Mailing lists

    * libcloud-dev
    * libcloud-commits
    * libcloud-private



Issue Tracking

    * JIRA (LCLD)

Initial Committers

    * Alex Polvi <alex>
    * Dan Di Spaltro <dan.dispaltro>
    * Ivan Meredith <ivan>
    * Jed Smith <jsmith>
    * Jeremy Orem <jeremy.orem>
    * Jerry Chen <github>
    * Paul Querna <pquerna>
    * Tom Davis <tom>



    * Paul Querna

Nominated Mentors

    * Paul Querna

Sponsoring Entity

    * Incubator PMC

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