Advanced Computing in the Age of AI|Monday, September 28, 2020
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OpenShift Gets Virtual Upgrades to Handle Mixed Workloads 

Red Hat continues to expand its OpenShift container applications platform with virtualization capabilities aimed at virtual machine-based workloads while integrating VM tools into its enterprise Linux distribution to handle emerging cloud-native applications.

Cloud-native security tools for OpenShift were also added this week to the Red Hat’s marketplace.

The IBM unit (NYSE: IBM) this week released an updated virtualization tool designed to manage traditional workloads while providing the runway required as virtualization gives way to cloud-native technologies. To that end, Red Hat said the 4.4. version of its virtualization tool released on Tuesday (Aug. 4) is “rebased” to the 8.2 version of its flagship enterprise Linux platform.

The goal is smoother integration with OpenShift, enabling support for current VMs while adding the capability to launch the next generation of cloud-native apps.

The upgrade is aimed at datacenter customers using virtualization software for deploying both traditional and container-based applications, with backward compatibility provided by the underlying virtualization module in the Linux kernel that functions as a hypervisor.

The virtualization upgrade based on RHEL 8.2 retains stability, performance and security upgrades targeting critical enterprise workloads while adding new capabilities for scaling and managing virtual infrastructure. Those include new dashboards for a data warehouse feature that tracks performance metrics. In one scenario, the inventory monitoring tool can spot troublesome workloads or determine when more hardware resources are needed.

Separately, Aqua Security said this week its cloud-native security platform has been added to Red Hat’s cloud marketplace, a clearinghouse for certified software used in container deployments. Natively integrated with OpenShift, the security platform monitors applications for suspicious activity and attacks.

Red Hat previously released OpenShift support for “mixed applications” running on virtual machines and application containers. The virtualization tool allows traditional VMs to run “side-by-side” on OpenShift with containers. Both are managed on OpenShift as native Kubernetes objects.

The OpenShift virtualization tools also allow users to add VM workloads to new or existing applications made up of VMs, containers and serverless deployments, Red Hat said.

The steady stream of OpenShift upgrades reflect parent company IBM’s strategy of placing the container platform at the center of its hybrid cloud strategy. Those upgrades are intended to advance the hybrid cloud platform while accelerating cloud-native development.

IBM CEO Arvind Krishna noted in April the company saw surging cloud demand as the company seeks to tap new enterprise workloads through a combination of Watson AI tools and expanded cloud services via OpenShift.

As of April, Krishna said IBM has doubled the number of OpenShift customers since completing its acquisition of Red Hat last year.

Red Hat also said this week that new OpenShift automation features would make it easier to deploy an OpenShift cluster on its latest virtualization infrastructure.

 

About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).

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