“I’d like to think that Martian life can be found with an OpenStack platform,” Rob McMahon of Red Hat told participants at the first OpenStack Days in Poland. Red Hat is currently working with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.


The inaugural OpenStack Days Poland event drew more than 300 users, upstream developers, operators and vendors to the Copernicus Science Center in the heart of Warsaw, Poland on March 22.

Although Warsaw is Poland’s capital city—and according to “Forbes,” a hotbed of startups and multinational tech companies’ European branches—this meetup traces its roots west to Wroclaw, the Silicon Valley of Poland, according to some event speakers.

Wroclaw’s large technology community formed an OpenStack group and held five local meetups before planning this Warsaw-based event designed to attract the attention of both users and developers from throughout Poland. The event is also considered the first meetup for the just-forming Warsaw- and Krakow-based Openstack user groups.

The audience came from throughout Poland and beyond, with several dozen users and some upstream developers, including Dragonflow’s PTL Omer Anson. Photo: Heidi Joy Tretheway.

Indeed, there was good-natured arguing (over beers) about which city was best among those hailing from Krakow in the south, Gdansk in the north, Warsaw in the center and Wroclaw (say it VROT-swahv) in the west.

Sponsors and speakers hailed from all of these locations—and from both local companies and multinational vendors that are familiar names in OpenStack. A handful of attendees came from Ukraine and other neighboring countries, and a few presentations were in English, but most in Polish.

If you can’t learn Polish, at least learn Polish cooking. Here, both potato-onion and strawberry pierogis are under construction at Polish Your Cooking. Photo: Heidi Joy Tretheway.

“I think many companies in Warsaw are adopting OpenStack rapidly now because there is a strong ecosystem of companies that can make it happen with a lesser learning curve,” a local representative from one OpenStack sponsor company said. “This year, we’re seeing much more rapid adoption and companies moving to large-scale deployments.”

Some of the organizations mentioned as running OpenStack are the browser Opera, the Central and Eastern European online auction site Allegro, and one of the largest Polish hosting providers Nazwa.

Cloud services provider OVH noted that it hosts more than 80 petabytes of data on Swift through its Dropbox-like infrastructure offering, and it will soon launch a new public cloud from a data center near Warsaw. OVH customers include Mailjet, Villeroy & Boch, and PrestaShop.

The market hall of vendors and sponsors was busy nonstop, with the “hallway track” very popular throughout the event. Photo: Heidi Joy Tretheway.

Rob McMahon, director of cloud for Red Hat’s EMEA region, told the audience that NASA is deploying the Red Hat OpenStack platform for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory; NASA increasingly relies more on cloud computing capabilities to process requests from flight projects and researchers working with mission data.“I’d like to think that Martian life can be found with an OpenStack platform,” he said.


This is Heidi Joy Tretheway’s first visit to Warsaw and her fourth cycle leading OpenStack’s User Survey. She was thrilled to see many other presenters quoting aspects of the User Survey and shared a sneak peek at the April 2017 statistics with attendees.