Looking to extend the appeal of its platform-as-as-service (PaaS) environment, Progress this week announced it is using Docker container APIs to add support for additional programming languages to its Modulus PaaS service.
Originally designed specifically for Node.js on top of an implementation of a MongoDB database, Paul Nashawaty, director of product marketing and solutions for Progress, says Docker makes it now feasible for Java, PHP, and Python developers to make use of a Modular PaaS environment that is distributed across multiple cloud services managed by Amazon, Joyent, and Digital Ocean.
The benefit of that approach, says Nashawaty, is that Modulus essentially delivers DevOps as a service by enabling distributed computing applications to automatically scale and invoke services such as load balancing whenever necessary using a set of templates developed by Modulus.
The Modulus PaaS environment itself, says Nashawaty, is based on Linux containers that are exposed to developers as a series of consumable “servos.”
Beyond adding support for multiple languages, Nashawaty says that the Modulus PaaS environment has been updated to provide persistent storage to handle programming languages that actually compile code. In contrast, Node.js does not compile code, says Nashawaty.
Nashawaty says that in addition to continuing to host entire applications, Progress also envisions developers that have built applications that run on premise taking advantage of “cloudbursting” capabilities to invoke additional capacity on demand.
While there is a fierce amount of competition in the PaaS space, Progress has a long history of delivery application development tools to enterprise customers. Most of those customers, however, are just now becoming familiar with Node.js as a programming construct.
Of course, Progress is also trying to usurp established PaaS players such as Heroku that helped pioneer the category, while also fending off large numbers of cloud service providers that have embraced open source Cloud Foundry software to stand up as a PaaS environment.
For that reason, Nashawaty says the PaaS battle isn’t going to be won necessarily by which PaaS platform costs less. Instead, the PaaS that provides the best integrated DevOps experience will drive faster times to market for delivering applications.
The degree to which IT organizations have modernized their DevOps processes will vary widely. In an effort to reduce costs, many of them have moved application development into PaaS environments in the cloud, where they often get exposed to best practices for DevOps for the first time. Obviously, the PaaS environment that delivers the least shock to their exiting IT operations management is going to be the one that is most well received.