Blueflood: A case study in open-sourcing a large piece of infrastructure software

Short Form


The hardest nut to crack in most open sources projects is usually not technical. Figuring out the right ingredients to a successful community is often the difference between successful and less-successful open source projects.


The Blueflood distributed metrics engine was released as open source software by Rackspace in August 2012. In the succeeding months the team had to strike a manageable balance between the challenges of growing a community, being good open source stewards, and maintaining a shipping product for Rackspace. Find out what worked, what did not work, and the lessons that can be applied as you endeavor to take your project out into the open.

In this presentation you will learn about strategies for releasing open source products, pitfalls to avoid, and the potential benefits of moving more of your development out in the open.


Open Source, community, blueflood, monitoring

Speaking experience

Cassandra Summit 2010+2011, SXSW 2012, O'Reilly Strata (NYC+Santa Clara) 2012, Cassandra EU 2012+2013, Berlin Buzzwords 2013+2014, Data Day Texas 2014


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    Gary Dusbabek

    Rackspace, Apache


    An Apache Cassandra committer and PMC member, Gary Dusbabek is a life-long programmer specializing in distributed systems. His past experience includes working with large-scale text and image indexes in the newspaper industry and high-volume advertisement booking software. Recent work at Rackspace includes working on Cassandra full-time and being a founding member of the Cloud Monitoring team. Gary currently works on the Cloud Metrics team that created the open source Blueflood metrics engine.