The first cloud-native conference, CloudNativeCon, which was held in Seattle November 8-9, 2016, was a sellout event that helped define a new approach to application development based on microservices and containerization. The same event ran concurrently with KubeCon, a conference for the Kubernetes community, and the combined conferences were organized by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). CNCF hosts key projects for the successful adoption of cloud-native technologies, which are the natural progression for organizations that want to take agile and DevOps-driven application development to the next level. CNCF will play an increasing role in supporting this adoption and in disseminating knowledge about the technologies. The launch of a reference cloud-native architecture at the event is one example of how CNCF will help developers.
CNCF hosts key open source projects for managing cloud-native technologies
CNCF was created by the Linux Foundation, with a growing membership across many well-known high-tech companies, and hosts a number of essential projects for managing cloud-native environments. These projects are:
Fluentd: logging solution.
Kubernetes: container orchestration and scheduling. Originally donated by Google, the project is now contributed to by 36% independent developers after Google’s 46%.
OpenTracing: a vendor-neutral open standard for distributed tracing.
Prometheus: metrics and monitoring solution.
The conference launched the Cloud Native End User Reference Architecture, v1.0 (see: github.com/cncf/landscape). CNCF also earlier this year opened a cloud hosting service for the development of cloud-native projects. It runs its own data center in Nevada for this purpose and the service is free for open source projects.
Enterprises should start getting to speed with cloud-native technologies because this paradigm will dominate the future of application development. Ovum recommends learning about cloud-native systems by creating proof-of-concept projects, and believes that enterprises should certainly consider this approach for all new products and services where agile and DevOps practices and culture are already established.
Defining cloud-native systems
The CNCF Charter defines cloud-native systems as having three fundamental properties:
Build applications with microservices architecture to create loosely coupled services and gain benefits such as scaling, as well being a perfect fit for DevOps continuous delivery.
Using containers to package applications and exploit the benefits of isolation and simplifying resource operations.
Uses an orchestration process to efficiently manage resources, which can also lower costs in maintenance and operations.
The cloud-native journey is a theme for Ovum’s 2017 research agenda.
Strategy Guide for Enterprises on the Containers IT Wave, IT0022-000711, August 2016.
Strategy Guide for Enterprises on the Serverless Computing IT Wave, IT0022-000763, September 2016.
Strategy guide for enterprises on the microservices architecture IT wave, IT0022-000702, July 2016.
Michael Azoff, Principal Analyst, Ovum Infrastructure Solutions Group