Had a great discussion with Scott Davis the EVP of Product Engineering and CTO of Embotics at VMworld 2017. Scott was kind enough to share some of the future looking innovations they are working hard on at Embotics.
"Clearly the industry is moving from having virtualization or IaaS centric cross-cloud management platforms to more of an application-centric container and microservices focus. We really see customers getting serious about running containers because of the application portability, microservices synergy, development flexibility and seamless production scale-out that is possible. At the same time they are reducing the operational overhead and interacting more programmatically with the environment.
When we look at the work VMware is doing with Pivotal Container Service we believe this is the right direction but we think that the key is really enhanced automation for DevOps. One of the challenges that was pointed out, is that while customers are successfully deploying Kubernetes systems for their container development, production operation can be a struggle. Often the environment gets locked in stasis because the IT team is wary of upgrades in a live environment.
At Embotics we are all about automation. With our vCommander product we have have a lot of intelligence that we can use to build a sophisticated level of iterative automation. So let's take that challenge and let's think about what would be needed to execute a low risk DevOps migration. You would probably want to deploy the new Kubernetes version and test it against your existing set of containers. This should be sandboxed to eliminate the risk to production, validated and then the upgrade should be fully automated.”
Scott proceeds to demonstrate a beta version of Embotics Cloud Management Platform 'CMP 2.0" automating these exact set of steps across a Kubernetes environment and then rolling the changes forward to update the production environment.
“I think fundamentally we can deliver true DevOps, speeding up release cycles, delivering higher quality and providing a better end user experience. In addition we can automatically pull source code out of platforms like Jenkins, spin up instances, regression test and validate. The test instances that are successful can be vaporized, while preserving the ones that are not so that the issues can be remediated.
We are rolling this out In a set of continuous software releases to our product so that as customers are integrating Containers, the Embotics 'CMP' is extended to meet these new use-cases.
We realize as we collect a number of data points spanning user preference, IT specified compliance rules and vCommander environment knowledge across both enterprise and hyper-scale targets like Azure and AWS that we can assist our customers with intelligent placement suggestions.”
Scott switches to a demo in which the recommended cloud target is ranked by the number of stars in the beta interface.
“We are building it in a way that allows the customer to adjust the parameters and their relative importance so if PCI compliance is more important they can adjust a slider in the interface and our ranking system adjusts to the new priority. Things like cost, compliance can be set to be both relative or mandatory to tune the intelligent placement according to what the customer views as important."
Clearly Embotics is making some innovative moves to incorporate a lot of flexibility in their CMP platform. Looking forward to seeing these releases in the product line with cross cloud intelligence for containers and placement.