Cloud Foundry Foundation Embraces Kubernetes Fully

The Cloud Foundry Foundation (CFF), at the virtual Cloud Foundry European Summit, today unveiled version 1.0 of cf-for-k8s, an instance of the open source platform-as-a-service (PaaS) environment that runs natively on Kubernetes.

At the same time, the CFF announced that version 2.5 of KubeCF, an implementation of the Cloud Foundry PaaS that enables an existing instance based on virtual machines to run on Kubernetes clusters, is available.

Finally, the CFF announced version 4.2 of Stratos, a web-based management console that now also can be employed to manage Kubernetes and Helm chart repositories. It also provides analysis tools to detect misconfigurations based on commonly accepted best practices and an embedded Popeye tool to analyze security, performance and availability in the cluster.

Chip Childers, executive director for the CFF, said with the release of version 1.0 of cf-for-k8s the melding of the Cloud Foundry application development environment with Kubernetes is now firmly established. Going forward the Cloud Foundry PaaS will absorb other open source infrastructure technologies such as Istio and Envoy to either augment the PaaS or replace redundant functionality, he says, noting middleware open source technologies such as Knative might also find their way into a Cloud Foundry PaaS environment.

Over time the CFF also expects cf-for-k8s to meld with KubeCF, originally known as Project Eirini. The latest version of KubeCF concludes an effort to make Kubernetes available as an alternative to the CFF-created Diego container orchestration engine. The release also adds support for container-to-container networking and multi-cluster application scheduling to the Diego orchestration engine.

The CFF is betting that once its PaaS is deployed on Kubernetes the application developer experience it provides will increase the overall size of the community as container applications are built and deployed on the platform. The cf-for-k8s option makes it possible for DevOps teams to deploy a PaaS environment locally or in the cloud because the infrastructure resources required to run an instance of Cloud Foundry have been reduced, notes Childers.

The main contributors to the Cloud Foundry PaaS are VMware, IBM, SUSE, SAP and Google. Its primary rival is the Red Hat OpenShift platform, which is now owned by IBM. As of yet, IBM has not signaled how much support it plans to provide for Cloud Foundry after making it clear its entire hybrid cloud computing strategy revolves around Red Hat OpenShift.

Regardless of which direction IBM leans, there’s enough support for Cloud Foundry to assure its continued relevance as a platform for building and deploying container applications. Many of the capabilities being included in Kubernetes and other related technologies are based on concepts that were pioneered by the CFF, says Childers.

In the meantime, DevOps teams should prepare for an onslaught of container applications that, thanks to PaaS environments running on top of Kubernetes, should manifest in much greater numbers in the months ahead.

Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist with over 25 years of experience. He also contributed to IT Business Edge, Channel Insider, Baseline and a variety of other IT titles. Previously, Vizard was the editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise as well as Editor-in-Chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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