In July 2010, NASA and Rackspace, a publicly held, cloud-computing company, launched OpenStack — an open-source software project whose goal is to provide a free alternative to buying services from public cloud-computing providers or paying expensive license fees for commercial cloud software. OpenStack provides an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) capability by combining two technologies: compute, a NASA technology that provisions virtual machines at massive scale, and object storage, a Rackspace technology that reliably stores billions of objects distributed across standard hardware.
As part of the OpenStack project, NASA and Rackspace waived their intellectual property rights and released the software under an Apache 2.0 or open-source software license that allows anyone to use, modify, and redistribute the software freely.
Today, OpenStack is a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technologists producing an open source cloud computing platform for public and private clouds. The project aims to deliver solutions for all types of clouds by being simple to implement, massively scalable, and feature rich.