VMworld 2015: VMware Readies DevOps for Cloud-Native Apps

New vSphere Integrated Containers and Photon Platform launched at VMworld aim to give operations teams the architecture for container-based apps that are portable and scalable.

VMware Inc. says it wants to make it easier for administrators to support development teams looking to build cloud-native applications based on containers. The company previewed the planned offerings at VMworld 2015, which began today in San Francisco, Calif. Both will enable building and managing cloud-native apps.

The goal of both vSphere Integrated Containers and the Photon Platform is to advance the traditional hypervisor to support applications that are scalable and portable across clouds while ensuring rogue containers can't compromise security. VMware plans to start delivering private betas of the new offerings next month with general release planned for some time next year.

So-called cloud-native applications are becoming particularly attractive to lines of business that are looking for very specific business outcomes -- often to build transaction-oriented apps that support mobile devices.

"Broadly speaking they're the applications which are the heart of many digital transformations that companies go through," said Ray O'Farrell, VMware's chief strategy and technology officer, speaking in the opening keynote address at VMworld. "These applications typically leverage cloud infrastructure, they leverage cloud frameworks, and quite often they focus very much on distributed and highly resilient types of applications."

The VMware vSphere Integrated Containers consist of several recently previewed technologies that ultimately will run atop existing VMware environments and bring together several technologies already released including Project Bonneville, designed to provide better integration between Docker containers and vSphere; Lightwave, a component to ensure security of containers running in vSphere using the new VMware Identity Manager; Project Photon OS, a lightweight (25MB) Linux-based container runtime optimized for vSphere and the Instant Clone technology released with vSphere 6.

While vSphere Integrated Containers will usher the path for vSphere shops to share existing apps in cloud environments, VMware also showcased Project Photon for greenfield applications. Project Photon consists of two components, VMware Photon Controller, which the company describes as a "multi-tenant, API-driven control plane optimized for scale, churn and high availability" that'll appeal to DevOps teams that are accustomed to infrastructures enabled for automation. The other is the VMware Photon Machine, based on an ESX-based "microvisor," which includes the Photon OS.

VMware and its sister company Pivotal (both are majority-owned by EMC Corp.) said they'll collaborate on delivering new solutions that run on the VMware Photon Platform and Pivotal Cloud Foundry.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.


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