The term cloud-native gets thrown around a lot, especially by cloud providers. If you have ever had an experience in cloud computing, you probably have come across the word cloud-native at least once.
- But what exactly does cloud-native mean?
- How it differs from the concept of the traditional approach?
- And, why it is so important?
In this post, we will discuss the term cloud-native in more detail and cover several key features of cloud-native applications.
Cloud-native applications refer to the apps that are based on microservices and there will be a huge demand for microservices-based architectures in the future.
IDC researchers predict, by 2022, it is estimated that 90% of all new apps will feature microservices architectures that improve the ability to design, debug, update, and leverage third-party code; 35% of all production apps will be cloud-native.
So, now that we know the future belongs to cloud-native applications, let us first look at the definition of cloud-native.
What Is Cloud-Native?
Essentially, the gist of Cloud Native is that applications should be built in the cloud, for the cloud, maximizing the advantages of the cloud. Let’s discuss it more
- Cloud-native is an approach of building and running applications that exploits the benefits of the cloud computing delivery model.
- Moving something in the cloud is not cloud-native
- Applications running in the cloud are not necessarily cloud-native.
- Cloud-native is about how applications are created and deployed, not where.
- In fact, an application running on-premises or a private cloud may still be cloud-native if it meets certain sets of properties and standards.
Key Objectives Of Cloud-Native
Let’s discuss three key objectives that define Cloud-Native:
- Capitalize on the Cloud: adopt a Cloud-First strategy, that is, look for capabilities that are already available in the cloud and use the greatest value services that suit your needs and only bring into the cloud what the cloud doesn’t offer.
- Deliver value early and often: rapid, agile software delivery, that is, break long release cycles into smaller, incremental releases, and also support CI/CD(continuous integration/continuous delivery) pipeline
- Build applications to exploit the cloud: different than building applications that run within the cloud, that is, building applications that can
- deploy easily and quickly
- Deploy to secure operating environments with resource isolation
- Scale in and out as needed
- Achieve high-performance characteristics
- Support high availability requirements
- Integrate easily and securely across cloud and on-premises environments
- Minimize cost, and so on.
Characteristics Of Cloud-Native Technologies
Cloud-native applications can be extended across different environments such as
- private cloud,
- public cloud,
- or a combination of these like hybrid clouds.
Cloud-native technologies are characterized by:
- Containers: A standard unit of software that packages up code and all its dependencies therefore the application runs quickly and reliably from one computing environment to another.
- Microservices: A collection of services that are very loosely coupled, independently deployable, only communicate through APIs, and are less complex and thus smaller as they generally focus only on a single functionality.
- Serverless Functions: Functions as a Service (FaaS), or hosted serverless that utilizes Docker containers for execution.
- Development Pipelines: A CI/CD pipeline helps you automate steps in your software delivery process, like initiating code builds, running automated tests, and deploying to a staging or production environment.
- Infrastructure-as-Code: Software that defines service instance creation, e.g. the “recipe” or
the manifest can be managed the same way development teams manage the source code for their projects.
- Event-Driven Application: Oracle Events Service eliminates the complexity of manually tracking changes across your cloud resources and responding to them in near real-time with Functions, Notifications, and Streaming.
- Application Programming Interfaces (APIs): API Gateway when used with Oracle Functions, you can create RESTful APIs that are serverless. No need to provision compute resources anymore, just develop your function and deploy as an API.
Benefits Of being Cloud-Native?
- Flexibility: Lets you deploy, repeat, and redeploy resources fast and easily, whenever and as long as necessary.
- Automatic: A definite proportion of automation is needed to produce output faster. It reduces our effort in testing and delivering the product.
- Efficiency: The applications developed using cloud-native technologies are 13 times more efficient than applications build using non-cloud native technologies.
- Testability: CI/CD (Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery) approach helps establish an automated way to test applications and deploy them as soon as the code is built.
- Disposability: Supports the disposable process that starts up soon and shuts down gracefully providing maximum robustness and quick recovery from unexpected crashes.
Cloud-Native vs Traditional Approach
Traditional- OS-dependent, Cloud Native- OS independent/ OS abstraction: The traditional infrastructure allows us to build close dependencies between the app and the OS. This dependency makes the application migration process complex and risky.
The cloud-native infrastructure lets the developers abstract away from infrastructure dependency which allows the teams to focus on their software entirely.
Traditional- Unpredictable, Cloud Native- Predictable: Traditional infrastructure is predicated on a long-term development process. It takes a longer time to build and releases are done as one big package.
On the other hand, a cloud-native infrastructure is designed to maximize the resiliency through predictable behaviors to enable new business functions.
Traditional- Over-sized capacity, Cloud Native- Right-sized capacity: The traditional infrastructures are over-sized that lack the capability to scale beyond, delaying the deployment of an application.
The cloud-native infrastructure allocates the resources based on the ongoing requirement of the application. This approach optimizes app lifecycle management.
Traditional- Manual, Cloud Native- Automated: Traditional development process requires heavy in-house administration as they are manually operated, which can be time-consuming and expensive for your business.
Cloud-native infrastructure is automated in nature that consistently applies the same set of rules in the process across any size of deployment.
With the advent of cloud-native, the code complexities have been simplified, making it easy for developers to develop a better application. The journey to cloud-native can be a long road, but you’ll find it rewarding in the end.
- 1Z0-1084-20 | Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Developer Associate
- Functions and Events in OCI
- KMS in OCI
- Monitoring Service in OCI
- Secret Management in OCI
Next Task For You
In our OCI Developer Associate [1Z0-1084] Certification training, we cover the fundamentals of Cloud-native applications in the Cloud-native Fundamentals module. In this training, we also cover How to develop, secure, test, and operate cloud-native applications.