The year in review: Hybrid applications for developers

Publisert på 20 desember, 2018

Principal Program Manager, Azure Stack

As 2018 comes to an end, I look at the technology landscape. I look at the kinds of hybrid scenarios our customers are developing. For example, we see Airbus transforming aerospace with Microsoft Azure Stack and I realize that this year has been amazing for developers that design, develop, and maintain cloud-based apps. Azure Stack has improved support for DevOps practices. You can use Kubernetes containers. You can use API Profiles with Azure Resource Manager and the code of your choice. You can review walkthroughs and tutorials on getting up and running with a development practice using a continuous integration pipeline. With Azure Stack, your apps can be developed in the cloud. You can code once and deploy to environments in Azure or in your local data center.

We are now seeing some of your favorite services from Azure arrive on Azure Stack. The Azure Stack team is also excited to come together with other members of the Azure Edge family, which include Data Box Edge, IoT Edge, and Azure Sphere. If you didn’t get a chance to attend Ignite 2018’s session on the Intellgent Edge check out the “Delivering Intelligent Edge and Microsoft Azure Stack and Data Box” session. The Edge closes the gap between on-premises solutions and the cloud. You can write applications based on a consistent Azure model. You can deploy different parts of your apps to different locations that make the most sense for each solution.

Over the course of this year we demonstrated that all of this is indeed a reality and not a distant vision, it is available today. Azure Stack is available in many regions throughout the world. Data Box Edge is also available together with other members of the Data Box family. You can also use exciting new services like IoT Edge and Azure Sphere on Azure Stack and Azure for a comprehensive hybrid platform.

Over the course of this year, both my team and our partners delivered capabilities that make it easier for you to use our Edge offerings in your apps. Early this year, Pivotal announced the general availability of Pivotal Cloud Foundry (PCF) in Azure Stack. PCF streamlines the way you push your.NET and Java code. You do not need to focus on where or how your code runs. The combination of PCF with Azure and Azure Stack opens opportunities for your hybrid app development.

As developers, we love when we can focus more on building our apps and worry less about infrastructure. That’s where infrastructure as code comes into play. The Azure Resource Manager (ARM) is the perfect answer for this need. The same ARM that is available in Azure is also available in Azure Stack. Your scripts and templates are consistent no matter where you point your deployment target. My team has worked on many improvements for ARM to make your hybrid app development experience easier. First among those improvements are the ARM API Profiles. API Profiles expose a set of resource types and API versions that are consistent across the different Azure clouds.

Back in June 2018, Hashicorp also released the Terraform provider for Azure Stack allowing you to provision and manage the infrastructure the same way you do in Azure.

During the second half of the year, we kept busy continuing to deliver services that our developers use. In partnership with the Azure SDK Team, we delivered API profile support for both .Net and Java alongside existing support for Python, Ruby, and Go.

During Ignite 2018 we had a variety of hybrid development-oriented talks. If you missed them, watch them! A few good ones include:

Finally, we provided new capabilities to make Azure Stack the best place for you to host your Kubernetes containers on-premise. You can use Kubernetes containers in Azure Stack through the Kubernetes Marketplace Item and through Red Hat OpenShift support. If you are a developer creating containerized applications, you have options. You have a choice on where to host your containers, a choice of different Azure services to integrate with your containers, and a choice to host your containers on-premises, the public cloud, and in Sovereign Azure clouds. On top of that, you can leverage the Open Source Service Broker to making it easy to consume Azure services and the Cloud Native Application Bundles to streamline your package dependencies.

This has been a great year as we worked with our customers to deliver innovation that will make your job easier. We have a pipeline full of exciting new capabilities coming in 2019, and as usual I will continue to post about them twice a month!

Now it’s time to unwind and enjoy the holidays! To learn more about hybrid application development read the previous blog post in this series, “A hybrid approach to Kubernetes.”