Java PaaS Provider Teams with Red Hat on OpenShift 'Cartridges'

Java-based Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) provider Jelastic this week announced an upcoming collaboration with Red Hat to promote the global standardization of pluggable PaaS "cartridges" for Red Hat's OpenShift cloud computing platform.

A "cartridge" is a kind of packaging module that allows ISVs and end users to integrate their own middleware, databases, and services into OpenShift, making them available to developers building apps on the platform. Cartridges offer open standard packaging formats that fit into OpenShift's extensible, pluggable framework, and can take the form of web frameworks, databases, monitoring services, or connectors to external backends. Red Hat provides an open Cartridge API through which devs can add their own binaries and logic.

Jelastic's CEO, John Derrick, calls cartridges "essential elements" for next-gen cloud infrastructures that free developers of the need to code for multiple platforms. The availability of cartridges, he said in a statement, results in a broader choice of tools and applications for the developer and dramatic simplification of the deployment and management of cloud-based applications.

They are scheduled to debut early next year, according to the company.

The announcement comes about a week after Jelastic unveiled its new Platform-as-Infrastructure solution, which combines Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) to create a single platform optimized for enterprises, hosting service providers, and OEMs. Jelastic seems to be pitching its new combo platform primarily at enterprises, emphasizing its deployment, management, and operational capabilities in private, public or hybrid environments. But the company is also reaching out to developers, touting the new platform's ability to provide "one-click deployment and automatic scalability of Java, PHP, and Ruby applications without the need to code to proprietary APIs."

Launched last year, OpenShift was initially aimed at open source developers. It comes with built-in management and auto-scaling capabilities that freed developers from stack setup, maintenance, and operational chores so they could focus on coding. OpenShift supports a range of programming languages, including Java, Ruby, PHP, Python, and Perl, as well numerous frameworks, databases, and clouds. And integration with the JBoss app server enables a cloud-ready architecture with a lightweight footprint and dynamic container model, the company said, to better support multi-core processing and multi-tenancy.

Red Hat now offers three flavors of OpenShift: OpenShift Online, a commercial public cloud app dev and hosting platform; OpenShift Enterprise, a commercial private PaaS aimed at companies; and OpenShift Origin, the open source PaaS project underlying the other two solutions. OpenShift supports Java EE 6, Ruby, PHP, Python, Perl, MongoDB, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.

Red Hat is putting some muscle behind OpenShift Online, and the company is reporting that its user base grew last year by 259 percent and the number applications on the platform grew by 322 percent.  

San Mateo, California-based Jelastic was founded in 2010 by Hivetext, a Zhytomyr, Ukraine-based startup focused on Java application development in the cloud. The company's flagship platform was the first Java PaaS to provide full application compatibility and developer control.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].