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VMware Steps Up PaaS Effort with Micro Cloud Foundry Beta

VMware on Wednesday released the beta of Micro Cloud Foundry, a complete version of its Cloud Foundry Platform as a Service (PaaS) designed to run on developers' PCs or Macs.

The Palo Alto, CA-based virtualization vendor announced the initial Cloud Foundry release in April, billing it as the industry's first open PaaS offering and a "new generation of application platform, architected specifically for cloud computing environments." IDC analyst Al Hilwa saw the Cloud Foundry release as an important strategic move that positioned VMware as "another emerging pole for Java developers."

With Micro Cloud Foundry, VMware is providing support for what it calls "high-productivity frameworks," including its own Spring for Java, but also Scala, Grails and other JVM-based frameworks; Ruby on Rails; the Node.js JavaScript engine; and the MongoDB, MySQL and Redis application services. The company plans to provide additional support for VMware's vFabric cloud app platform in future releases, according to VMware Product Marketing Director Dave McJannet.

"We're really focused on the developer with this release," McJannet said. "We want to make it as simple as possible for them to build complete cloud apps locally, without having to install and configure databases or other middleware components. We think this will of great interest to the developer community as a simple way of building applications and embracing that PaaS experience on their own laptops."

Java developers write code for the Micro Cloud Foundry in the Eclipse-based SpringSource Tool Suite (STS). Rails and Node.js developers use a command-line version with VMware's VMC client for scripting routine procedures.

All the frameworks supported on Micro Cloud Foundry are also supported on Cloud Foundry, McJannet said. "Which means that, say, a Java developer using the SpringSource Tool Suite can deploy his or her app to a local Micro Cloud Foundry instance or to CloudFoundry.com, all within the STS."

This release comes on the heels of VMware's announcement of CloudFoundry.com, a public cloud PaaS environment, and CloudFoundry.org, an open source PaaS project. Since its launch, the open source project has received about 80 different pull requests from its budding community to add support for languages such as Erlang, JRuby, PHP and Python, as well as data services such as the Neo4J. (Erlang and Neo4J are now supported; support for JRuby, PHP and Python is in process, McJannet said.)

The free beta of VMware's Micro Cloud Foundry is available for download here.

About the Author

John K. Waters is a freelance author and journalist based in Silicon Valley. His latest book is The Everything Guide to Social Media. Follow John on Twitter, read his blog on ADTmag.com, check out his author page on Amazon, or e-mail him at john@watersworks.com.


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