VMware: Cloud Foundry is like Linux for the cloud

Claims focus is letting developers write code, not manage middleware

EMC VMware is likening its Cloud Foundry PaaS (platform as a service) to Linux for the cloud, serving as an application portability layer.

The company on Wednesday held a one-year birthday party of sorts for its cloud platform, emphasizing that Cloud Foundry provides developers an opportunity to do what they want to do -- write code -- without having to deal with other tasks, such as configuring middleware. One company official drew parallels between Cloud Foundry's role in cloud computing and what Linux has meant to hardware portability, in which developers can move their applications around to different clouds.

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"Linux has done a great job of being an open system for really making all sorts of different hardware be portable and compatible with each other, so when a new hardware server ships, Linux is there and running on top of it," Steve Herrod, VMware's CTO , told InfoWorld. "We see IaaS [infrastructure as a service] or the cloud as being the new hardware. It is what you expect things to run on. So we see an equivalent function being on needed -- an open approach to always being up and running on all these clouds and providing a level of portability. In that sense, Cloud Foundry is providing a way that applications can be written to run across all of the different implementations of IaaS, and it's open source with a good community, like Linux."

VMware was not upset with the notion of Cloud Foundry forking. "Ultimately it gets more Cloud Foundry out there, more partners," said Mark Lucovsky, VMware's vice president of engineering. Cloud Foundry runs in both private and public clouds.

Also on Wednesday, VMware introduced Cloud Foundry Bosh, an open source tool chain for release engineering, deployment, and life cycle management of large-scale distributed services. Bosh is intended to enable operation of production instances of Cloud Foundry and is available under an Apache license from CloudFoundry.org.

In addition, VMware introduced a new version of CloudFoundry.org, serving as a source code management system for Cloud Foundry that it says is easier to use. Cloud Foundry source code is being converged to a single set of public code repositories on GitHub and integrated with the Gerrit code review system for code reviews and Jenkins for continuous integration. The new process is intended to simplify community code contributions, improve code quality, and offer greater visibility into code changes.

Furthermore, VMware announced support of Cloud Foundry from vendors including Cloud9, CollabNet, ServiceMesh, Soasta, and eBay's X.commerce.

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