VMware Springs Forth with New Cloud App Platform

VMware announces a new Cloud Application Platform that leverages Spring and the company's new vFabric application services.

VMware has announced its new Cloud Application Platform, which capitalizes on some of the company's key acquisitions and combines the Spring Java development framework with VMware's new vFabric application services.

The announcement comes out of VMware's VMworld conference in San Francisco, where the company rolled out its new strategy and solutions for cloud application platforms, enabling developers to build and run modern applications that intelligently share information with underlying infrastructure to maximize application performance, quality of service and infrastructure utilization, VMware officials said.

The VMware Cloud Application Platform combines Spring and vFabric to deliver a complete cloud application platform that ensures performance and portability across heterogeneous cloud environments. vFabric is a comprehensive set of integrated application services including a lightweight application server, global data management, cloud-ready messaging, dynamic load balancing and application performance management.

VMware officials said modern applications need to support dynamic user interactions, low-latency data access and virtual infrastructure all while meeting the security and compliance demands of the enterprise. VMware vFabric is optimized for cloud computing's increasingly dynamic architectures, versus traditional middleware that requires complete stack control.

VMware's cloud application platform strategy is a key tenet of VMware's IT-as-a-service vision. IT-as-a-service is about optimizing the production of IT services and creating new models of IT consumption that dramatically improve IT agility. This changes the traditional view of IT as a cost center to one of value creator.

"With the rise of virtualization and modern development frameworks, a fundamentally more productive and portable approach to delivering new applications has emerged," said Rod Johnson, senior vice president of the Application Platform division of VMware. "We're moving into an era where developers can build great applications and immediately deploy those applications onto a modern platform that provisions and configures itself on demand and intelligently runs and scales the application based on policy."

In an interview with eWEEK, Johnson said the new VMware Cloud Application platform "is the coming-out party of the SpringSource technology we brought to VMware. This is the vision of what drove the acquisition."

"IT is undergoing a transformation: Applications are changing, infrastructure is changing, and organizations are looking for a pathway to harness the promise of the cloud," said Rachel Chalmers, senior analyst of enterprise software at The 451 Group, in a statement. "Application platforms of today have markedly different requirements than those we have relied upon in the past. The VMware Cloud Application Platform is evolving to meet the needs of today's organizations."

Johnson added that he believes the Java community is the largest enterprise developer community around. And, largely because of Spring, "we are strong leaders in Java productivity. That's one of our key advantages. It's important for developers to bring their existing tools into cloud computing. So we want you to come as you are."

VMware officials said applications are increasingly built with modern development frameworks that leverage runtime and data management services that are much more agile and designed for virtualization. VMware's vFabric will initially target the 2.5 million Spring Java developers. The VMware Cloud Application Platform comprises the Spring Framework for building new applications together with a complete set of Application Platform Services required to run and manage these applications. The combination will enable enterprises to maximize speed and innovation, extend the benefits of virtualization to the application, and provide an evolutionary path to the cloud.

Indeed, with this new VMware cloud application platform, developers are able to build new applications in a familiar and productive way while enabling the choice of where to run them, whether on-premises or in public clouds such as VMforce or Google.

However, "We get into a lot of conversations about implementing the private cloud to run enterprise Java applications," Johnson said. "We're giving our customers a clear pathway to cloud computing."