Apprenda streamlines deployment of .NET applications without requiring major code modifications.
The corner of cloud computing known
as platform as a service has been heating up over the past year, with new products
and projects coming online that are aimed at abstracting away application
deployment details and enabling developers to focus primarily on their code.
Early on, most platform as a
service (PaaS) options have favored languages such as Java and Python, paired
with largely open-source application stacks. With the exception of Microsoft's
own Azure service, most of the PaaS focus has been aimed away from Microsoft's
.NET framework and its corresponding stack.
Recently, however, this situation has
been changing, with the emergence of .NET-targeted options such as Apprenda Inc.'s
Apprenda 3.0, which enables organizations to deploy their own .NET PaaS atop
the Microsoft Web application stack.
Apprenda 3.0 is private PaaS, which
can be installed either on a company's on-premises infrastructure, or in a
public cloud, such as Amazon's Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2) service.
Organizations install the Apprenda software on one or more machines, and the
product arranges the application and database server components into a single
I tested Apprenda 3.0 on a single
Windows 7 machine in our lab, with a focus on the developer-facing aspects of
the product, such as its amenability to hosting pre-existing applications. I
found getting up and running with the product easy. It was also easy to deploy
standard .NET applications with only modest modifications.
Based on my tests, I recommend that
individuals and organizations deploying .NET applications take Apprenda out for
a spin themselves to determine if its deployment model can make their lives
easier, and free up more time to focus directly on their applications.
Fortunately, the product is easy to
try out. The Express version of Apprenda is free to download and use, but is limited
to 12GB of RAM across the cluster of systems managed by the product. Pricing
for the full version of Apprenda is based on the amount of RAM in one's managed
cluster. For more information on the two versions, see this rundown at the Apprenda Website