OSS Technologies Which Are Key to Container, Microservices Adoption

Charlotte Dunlap – Principal Analyst, Application Platforms

Summary Bullets:

• Vendors are supplementing platform services via OSS tools and frameworks
• OSS drastically improves time-to-market for next-generation architectures and technologies

I’ve just wrapped up a spring tour of app platform vendor conferences. Despite the fact that innovative technology rollouts promise Netflix-like continuous delivery of modern apps, I’ve got some concerns. Inevitably while attending smaller technology sessions during said conferences, I’d encounter parties from both sides of the DevOps equation expressing frustration and confusion around how to implement modern hybrid cloud app development solutions.

Naturally there is a lot of well-deserved buzz surrounding next-generation architectures (e.g., microservices and serverless computing) and formats (e.g., containers), yet developers are struggling to work out how to bring monolithic on-premises apps into containerized microservices projects. Vendors are starting to heed the call to improve offerings through new tools and frameworks aimed at simplifying modern app development/deployment which supports CICD, (continuous integration/deployment) and to that end they are tapping into open-source software (OSS) communities for cutting-edge technologies. These modern platforms focus heavily on the need for new levels of infrastructure abstraction so customers can focus on business problems versus the mechanics of making the underlying pieces work together. For example, developers are moving into the phase of wanting to write microservices to achieve more efficient app development and continuous delivery, without having to work out all the logistics of containerization, orchestration, or even eventually serverless computing.

Vendors are stepping up. Last week Red Hat, whose business model is built around OSS, acquired Codenvy, a technology partner whose enterprise solution is built on the popular Eclipse Che technology and integrated into Red Hat’s OpenShift platform to abstract infrastructure complexities. (Please see Red Hat’s Codenvy Acquisition Strengthens Container Strategy; Next Focus Should Be Microservices Framework , May 26, 2017). And Oracle this spring acquired Wercker for its Docker-based automation technology which will help shore up its microservices framework. (Please see DockerCon 2017: Containers Market Segment Becomes Highly Competitive as CXOs Prioritize Next-Gen DevOps, April 20, 2017).

The move to the cloud requires significant expertise in the DevOps process, prompting the importance of more granular tools which support app scalability, management, portability, common patterns and event-based programming models. This will only be achieved by leveraging key open-source software technologies. Here are a handful of important OSS technologies vendors will heavily leverage in the next six months:

• Eclipse Vert.x: Event-driven toolkit that runs on JVMs to support app scalability

• Eclipse Che: Simple web-based IDE, which is next-gen Eclipse IDE

• MicroProfile: Java EE subset which supports modern architectures including microservices

• Kubernetes: Automated deployment, scaling, and management of containerized apps

• Fabric8: Development platform for Kubernetes to create cloud-native apps and microservices

• Funktion: Event-driven Lambda programming model for Kubernetes

• Docker: A tool which automates the deployment of containerized apps

• TensorFlow: A software library by Google for machine learning

• Spring Boot/Spring Cloud: Tools for building common patterns in distributed systems

• Cloud Foundry: OSS multi-cloud PaaS.

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