Hewlett-Packard is on fire. IT giant Hewlett-Packard on Thursday announced a deal to buy Eucalyptus Systems, an early cloud-software startup. HP did not disclose the financial terms of the acquisition, which is aimed at building up the company’s ability to help firms build computing homes in the cloud.

As part of the deal, Eucalyptus CEO Marten Mickos will join Hewlett-Packard as a senior vice president, he takes over as general manager of HP’s cloud computing business, replacing Martin Fink. Marten Mickos now leads the company’s OpenStack private-public cloud effort, he will report directly to HP CEO Meg Whitman. Mickos is a big name in the open-source community, he founded a startup called MySQL, and built it into a business powerhouse that sold to hardware specialist Sun Microsystems for $1 billion in 2008, both Sun and MySQL are now part of software company Oracle.

Eucalyptus is widely known in the cloud space as being an open-source offering that gives private cloud companies the tools they need that work seamlessly with Amazon’s cloud service. It sells software for building a private cloud that fits seamlessly with Amazon Web Service’s API (application programming interface), which means that customers can easily move data (back and forth) between their data centers and Amazon cloud. It helps organizations and companies pool together their resources such as computing, network, and storage which in turn gives end-users the ability to tap on-demand resources with hybrid and private clouds. 

Founded in 2007, based in Goleta, Ca., Eucalyptus raised $55 million in funding from venture capital. Investors include benchmark capital, BV Capital, Institutional Venture Partners, and New Enterprise Associates.

Eucalyptus claims a couple of big customers on board- Handset giant Nokia and IT company F-secure. Before HP’s acquisition, Eucalyptus was awarded over $55 million in funding from venture capital, although the exact figures have not been revealed, many speculate that the acquisition that’s its was a 9-figure deal.