The big HPC labs that may not be Oracle customers for much longer still need tech support. This is where Whamcloud, Xyratex, Cray, and DDN come in. They will offer support for Lustre file systems (and maybe even IBM and Hewlett-Packard will do so if the mood strikes them now that Oracle is backing away from traditional HPC system sales). OpenSFS wants to fund the companies that are offering that deep support to make sure someone is doing it. The non-profit also wants to fund the development of features to stabilise and then scale Lustre, as well as fund whatever future file system will be created to store data on exascale-class systems many years hence.
Dan does a good job of summarizing the Lustre community landscape today, but he doesn’t factor in the formation of HPCFS, another new Lustre non-profit modeled after successful open source projects like Apache and Mozilla. Both groups seem to have similar goals to keep Lustre viable, but I’m thinking the road to the future falls in the shadow of Oracle’s Dark Tower.