Oracle, at the KubeCon + CloudNativeCon 2017 conference, announced that it is making two tools for managing Kubernetes clusters available as open source projects.
An Fn Installer developed by Oracle makes it easier to provision a serverless computing framework on a Kubernetes cluster, while Global Multi-Cluster Management software makes it possible to more easily manage distributed instances of Kubernetes. Oracle previously announced it has made the Fn serverless framework available as an open source project. Oracle has also made available IT management applications for containers as open source projects.
All these projects stem from code that Oracle developed for the Oracle Container Native Application Development Platform, an instance of a container-as-a-service (CaaS) environment built on Kubernetes that also includes a managed option instance of Kubernetes dubbed Oracle Container Engine Cloud Service.
Bob Quillin, vice president of the Oracle Container Group, says the Global Multi-Cluster Management software makes it possible to manage federated instances of Kubernetes as one logical cluster. The goal is to be able to autoscale clusters or take advantage of spot pricing of IT infrastructure resources of a cloud service by spinning up Kubernetes clusters on demand.
Oracle, adds Quillin, is adding value to the Kubernetes community by not only contributing code, but also by taking the lead on an open source serverless computing frameworks that enables developers working with containers to also invoke an event-driven architecture to execute complementary batch jobs in near real time using a functional programing model.
Rather than one type of application development platform superseding all others, Quillin says Oracle envisions a world where cloud services will be used to seamlessly invoke multiple types of cloud-native application development platforms. In fact, Oracle expects most of the usage of containers and serverless computing frameworks to shift to bare-metal servers to attain both better performance and higher infrastructure utilization rates, he notes.
While Oracle has invested heavily into application servers and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) environments commonly used to develop and deploy monolithic applications, the company is now facing a host of rivals that include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Docker Inc. and Google, in addition to traditional competitors such as Microsoft, Red Hat and IBM. As part of that effort Oracle is clearly trying to increase its influence in an open source community that typically has shied away from commercial offerings such as the Oracle WebLogic application server or the Oracle database. The only open source segment where Oracle has been able to wield significant influence is the MySQL relational database, which Oracle acquired in 2008.
Right now, however, there is no shortage of open source serverless computing frameworks based on Docker containers and Kubernetes. It remains to be seen which to those frameworks will gain traction among container developers.
In the meantime, Oracle does have a massive number of professional developers using its software. It’s only a matter of time before large numbers of those developers are using containers in the cloud. Oracle is clearly doing everything it can to make sure that cloud is the one it manages versus rival offerings such as AWS, Microsoft Azure or Google Cloud Platform.