Serverless computing is rapidly emerging as one of the favorite ways developers programmatically invoke cloud infrastructure. Instead of having to be aware of how their applications are consuming IT infrastructure, a serverless computing framework employs an event-driven architecture to make additional infrastructure resources available in real time as an application scales up and down.
Today, Platform9 launched Fission, an open source implementation of a serverless computing framework based on the Kubernetes container orchestration engine originally developed by Google.
Madhura Maskasky, vice president of product for Platform9, says IT organizations clearly need an open approach to deploying serverless computing frameworks. The most widely used serverless computing framework today is a Lambda service created by Amazon Web Services. But that offering is based on a proprietary platform that makes use of interfaces that lock IT organizations into AWS, says Maskasky.
“If, for example, you want to be able to use open source Kafka messaging software with a serverless framework, you can’t do that on AWS,” says Maskasky.
Fission, says Maskasky, makes uses of open source technologies to provide a serverless computing framework compatible with container technologies, such as Docker, that IT organizations can deploy anywhere.
Platform9 plans to make Fission also available as a managed service on cloud infrastructure it manages. Platform9 today also announced that a managed service based on Kubernetes alone is now generally available. IT organizations can opt to deploy Kubernetes alone on Platform9 infrastructure or deploy it on top of a managed OpenStack service that Platform9 already makes available.
Obviously, it’s still early days when it comes to serverless computing. As an instance of a microservice architecture, serverless computing clearly complements the way modern applications are being built using containers. The issue facing IT organizations is to what degree they want to manage and control those serverless frameworks versus relying on third-party providers that abstract away much of the complexity associated with trying to manage next-generation computing platforms.