VMware expects that the change towards the development of microservices-based applications provided on Kubernetes will accelerate in 2022 as higher levels of abstraction become more widely available and the platform becomes more accessible.
Craig McLuckie, vice president of research and development at VMware, says the core corporate strategy to enable IT organizations to achieve this goal is a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) environment powered by VMware Tanzu that will make Kubernetes more accessible to developers.
Currently in beta, the Tanzu Application Platform is a PaaS that provides a framework for developers to build applications that can be deployed on clusters running any Kubernetes distribution. This PaaS environment will also make it easier, for example, for developers who are already familiar with the Spring Boot framework to create Java applications available on Kubernetes.
At the same time, VMware is relying on curated instances of Kubernetes such as VMware Tanzu, which are either provided by an in-house IT team or used as a managed service, to drive a wave of consolidation in cluster management and break down management silos. IT teams will seek to lower the overall cost of managing Kubernetes by taking advantage of the economic scale made possible by higher levels of abstraction provided on top of Kubernetes, he says.
In some cases, Kubernetes is deployed either on a bare metal server or on a virtual machine. In either case, VMware will enable its Tanzu distribution of Kubernetes to be deployed on both platforms. In addition, VMware also offers access to a Kubernetes distribution that is tightly integrated with its VMware vSphere hypervisor.
McLuckie says it is evident that there is a tectonic shift afoot in the way applications are constructed. As with any major change in the company, however, this change will take time. Most companies will run monolithic applications alongside new microservices-based applications in the years to come.
After being outsourced from Dell Technologies, VMware no longer saw Kubernetes as an existential threat to the existence of virtual machines. However, most Kubernetes clusters have traditionally been deployed on virtual machines to ensure isolation between application workloads. The number of Kubernetes instances running on bare metal servers is expected to steadily increase, but for now, the majority of Kubernetes clusters running in cloud computing environments will continue to run on a virtual one Machine running. VMware has advocated using its hypervisor as the foundation for a hybrid cloud capable of running both monolithic and microservices-based applications.
Of course, there are many other options when it comes to hybrid cloud computing. The biggest advantage of VMware is that its hypervisor is already widely used in local IT environments. Deploying the same hypervisor in multiple clouds makes it easier for IT teams standardized on VMware vSphere to extend the reach of the existing management framework to cloud computing environments.
It’s too early to say how the battle for control of hybrid cloud computing environments will develop in 2022. However, with the introduction of VMware’s PaaS for Kubernetes, competition will continue to intensify.