Why CloudFoundry is Disruptive?

Posted on Monday, May 23, 2011

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Recently, Inphina started exploring Cloud Foundry to add onto its cloud offerings. The initial reactions have varied from good to very good to but ‘could they have this…’ In general it looks like that Cloud Foundry (CF) would be disrupting the PaaS market eventually. Why? Primarily because of the following reasons

  • It is not tied to a particular environment or framework like .Net for Azure, Java/Python for the App Engine, Java for Beanstalk. CloudFoundry does support Java, Ruby, Grails, Node.js for now and the support for other languages / frameworks is on the roadmap.
  • No vendor lock-in and no cloud lock-in. That is right you can deploy on any cloud. CF PaaS can be deployed on Amazon.
  • Choice of Public and Private cloud infrastructures. This is one of the uphill battle that we are fighting with GAE at many enterprises. CloudFoundry PaaS can be deployed in your private datacenter and VMWare has enterprise support for that as well.
  • Open PaaS, so take the code and build on top of that and contribute back.
  • Backed by VMware and Spring (bought by VMware a couple of years back) which are known names in the enterprises. (I remember the day in earlier life when I wanted to bundle the Spring jar with my project and had to seek scores of approvals from the NY based financial house, but now no-one would blink an eyelid for Spring)

So does it mean that GAE and Azure would have to start losing sleep. Well, not at the moment because CF is still in beta. But, given the fact that GAE has partial support for Java and that Azure would be supporting .Net primarily (now that their Java offering has kind of fallen flat) the Open PaaS strategy of CF is intimidating. It enables developers to do what they do best i.e. develop in the language and framework of their choice and have little concerns about deployment environments.

One area where I feel still a lot of catch up is required is services. GAE as a PaaS offers a bouquet of services which are unmatched by any other PaaS. At least, at the moment. For a rapid development and prototyping approach I would still probably fall back to GAE where I get mails, namespaces, cache, channel api, oauth etc etc. Though CF could easily provide administration services with Hyperic and system level services with GemFire and RabbitMQ but other application level services which GAE can provide are still missing.

All in all, an Open PaaS which needs to followed closely. Enjoy the presentation …

Inphina, as an expert on Google App Engine and Google Apps has helped more than 10 medium to large organizations help take advantage of the cloud by building, migrating or re-engineering their complex line of business applications to the cloud thereby making significant reductions in their capex expenditure. If you are interested in an assessment send us a mail at cloud@inphina.com

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Posted in: Cloud, Java