Red Hat Advances OpenShift Enterprise Platform-as-a-Service

A new installer and networking integration highlight Red Hat's latest on-premises PaaS update.

Red Hat is officially releasing the next generation of its on-premises OpenShift platform-as-a-service (PaaS) cloud solution. OpenShift Enterprise 2.0 brings new data center and networking features that expand on the initial promise of the first release of the OpenShift Enterprise platform in 2012.

Red Hat has multiple versions of OpenShift, including a hosted online edition and the community-supported Origin open-source edition. The OpenShift Online edition iterates rapidly and benefits from a major update in November with scalability improvements.

"Each OpenShift Enterprise release brings the on-premises product in line with the latest feature set available in our OpenShift Online service," Ashesh Badani, general manager of the Cloud Business Unit at Red Hat, told eWEEK.

Red Hat updates the OpenShift Online service every month and releases OpenShift Enterprise three to four times per year, Badani said. One area that differs between the Enterprise and Online editions is the installation of the PaaS. The online service by definition does not require installation, while the on-premises version does require organizations to install the PaaS onto server hardware. As part of the OpenShift Enterprise 2.0 release, there is now a new wizard-driven installer that is available for enterprise users as well as the community OpenShift Origin release.

As part of the OpenShift Enterprise 2.0 release, Red Hat has also built a new administration console.

"What you see in OpenShift Online and what we also have in OpenShift Enterprise today is a User Console that enables individual developers to manage their own applications," Badani said. "The new OpenShift Enterprise feature is an Admin Console that enables an administrator to get visibility into all of the applications running on OpenShift and the capacity metrics."

Another area of improvement in the OpenShift Enterprise 2.0 release is with new data center networking integration components for external router and load balancer infrastructure.

"The External Router/Load Balancer integration feature in OpenShift Enterprise 2.0 is a new plug-in interface that we are providing that enables customers to hook up an external routing tier to their OpenShift applications," Badani explained. "This was driven by customers who want to deploy applications on OpenShift, but want to route incoming application traffic through their existing network infrastructure."

Red Hat's latest enterprise PaaS release follows the official release of the rival Pivotal One platform, which includes the Cloud Foundry PaaS. As is the case with OpenShift, Cloud Foundry is also an open-source PaaS-based effort. At this early stage, Badani said the Pivotal launch has not had any impact on OpenShift.

What's Next?

Looking into 2014, Badani said the plan is to continue to drive new features and functionality aggressively in both OpenShift Enterprise and OpenShift Online.

"Some of the big feature areas that we are working on include advancing our Linux containers capabilities through our integration with Docker and leveraging new capabilities in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5 and 7.0," Badani said. "We are also working with the JBoss team on an initiative called xPaaS that will bring new advanced middleware services into OpenShift."

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at eWEEK and Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner

Sean Michael Kerner is an Internet consultant, strategist, and contributor to several leading IT business web sites.