Bringing More Tanzu to Three Cloud Transformations

March 31, 2021 Dormain Drewitz

"Cloud" has come to mean many things. When a board member or senior leadership demands "a cloud strategy," what do they mean? If cloud means greater resilience and faster time to market, how do we achieve that? At VMware, we see our customers navigating three cloud transformations. Each transformation supports digital business and app modernization at different levels.  

Today, with the unveiling of VMware Cloud as part of “Leading Change: Accelerate Your App and Cloud Transformation,”  VMware is announcing several milestones across the VMware Tanzu portfolio. Each of these milestones advances one (or more) of these cloud  transformations. Combined, these milestones illustrate why VMware is uniquely positioned to meet organizations where they are and guide them along any or all three of these cloud transformation journeys.

First, the three cloud transformations

To have a productive conversation about adopting cloud, we need to know what "cloud" means. In the context of computing, cloud usually refers to one of three things. It can refer to how infrastructure is consolidated, abstracted, and delivered over a network. It can refer to an operating model that supports developer self-service and automated delivery pipelines. Or it can refer to application architectures that are highly resilient, independently scalable, and consume or share data according to versionable APIs. 

In January, we began describing Tanzu's capabilities in the context of three transformations, including:

  • Cloud Infrastructure Transformation

  • DevSecOps Transformation

  • Application Transformation

Let's look at what's new for each of these workstreams.

Cloud infrastructure transformation

75 percent of IT leaders are prioritizing cloud migrations because of the pandemic, according to a September 2020 thought leadership paper commissioned by VMware in which Forrester Consulting surveyed more than 200 global enterprise CIOs and SVPs of IT. Yet these migrations aren't wholesale and they don't happen overnight. Multi-cloud is the reality facing many organizations today and for years to come. 

Operating in a multi-cloud world is inherently complex. Simplification comes from controlling cloud infrastructure in a consistent way. Consistency makes it easier to gain efficiencies from automation.

At the core of VMware's cloud infrastructure transformation solution is VMware Cloud Foundation. Need to run containers in the cloud alongside VMs? That's where Tanzu Basic and Tanzu Standard come in. They provide a simple path to Kubernetes within this cloud infrastructure transformation solution. Today, we're announcing:

  • Tighter integration with VMware Cloud on AWS*. Provision and manage Kubernetes clusters in a consistent way across clouds, including VMware Cloud on AWS. With this integration, customers will be able to centrally manage the entire lifecycle of Tanzu Kubernetes clusters on VMware Cloud on AWS and manage other aspects of Kubernetes clusters, such as access, security, conformance, and data protection. 

  • Tanzu Application Service is now supported on Cloud Foundation and VMware Cloud on AWS. Run an integrated application platform for getting code to production on an integrated cloud infrastructure stack. Or run that application platform in AWS on the same, consistent infrastructure abstraction used in your private data center. Read the full TAS 2.11 update here

  • Tanzu Standard Edition is now available in VMware Cloud Universal. VMware Cloud Universal is a flexible subscription that simplifies the consumption of VMware multi-cloud infrastructure and management services. With VMware Cloud Universal credits, customers can consume VMware Cloud Foundation Subscription, VMware Cloud on AWS, VMware Cloud on Dell EMC, and vRealize Cloud Universal. Customers can enjoy a flexible consumption model with Tanzu Standard as part of VMware Cloud Foundation Subscription.

DevSecOps transformation

Less than 40 percent of companies deploy software more frequently than monthly, according to 451 Research, part of S&P Global Market Intelligence’s Voice of the Enterprise: DevOps, Workloads & Key Projects – Advisory Report survey. Slow release cycles aren't only a disadvantage in a competitive digital economy. They can also mean that security vulnerabilities are in production longer. DevOps practices are needed for good security hygiene.

Automating and accelerating the path from code to production in a consistent and repeatable way means building a platform for developers. As observed in the latest State of DevOps report, internal platforms are a hallmark of DevOps high performers. But these platforms have to be "a compelling option" for application teams. Tanzu Advanced is a solution for securing the container lifecycle while reducing developer toil. 

Building a DevSecOps platform requires a product mindset for continuous improvement. Tanzu makes it easier for DevOps platform builders to create a compelling developer experience and meet security requirements. Today we are announcing:

  • For DevOps teams building container-as-a-service platforms on Kubernetes, VMware now supports Kubernetes operators for popular data systems RabbitMQ, PostgreSQL, and GemFire. Build a RabbitMQ or PostgreSQL or GemFire service on Kubernetes.

  • For DevOps teams building a Tanzu Application Service–based application platform, TAS 2.11 has operational enhancements. New platform health monitoring and upgrade capabilities make running the platform easier. Read more about TAS 2.11 here.

  • Tanzu Observability has new performance enhancements. Observability is a critical part of any DevOps practice. Learn more about the improvements here.

  • SOC 2 Type 2 compliance: Built upon world-class security and operations practices, Tanzu is committed to delivering services at the highest industry standards and protecting our customers’ sensitive data to the highest level. The global control plane that provides management capabilities in both Tanzu Standard and Advanced editions, has recently achieved SOC 2 Type 2 compliance, one of the most useful industry certifications for evaluating a service provider’s security credentials. Learn more here.

Application transformation

Developers are adopting new app architectures, like microservices, serverless, and reactive patterns. According to the 2020 State of Spring survey, 83 percent of Spring developers are building microservices, with another 33 percent using Reactive and 32 percent developing serverless applications. These new patterns aren't frivolous pursuits of the intellectually curious. They deliver material value, such as supporting faster time to production of new features, or a better user experience in the face of latency and complex processing.

How do we enable adoption of these patterns and remove friction in the developer experience? The less time a developer has to spend engineering how a new thing will work, the better. That takes developer-friendly collaboration and platform services that offload architectural infrastructure. 

Many modern architectures come at some cost of complexity. Offloading what developers have to spend time on is essential for adoption. Tanzu makes it easier for developers to focus on their business or integration logic, and spend less time engineering system infrastructure. Today we are announcing:

  • Spring Native is in beta*, allowing developers to compile Spring applications to native images with GraalVM. The nearly instant startup time of Spring Native executables make the scale-to-zero approach of serverless more feasible. Read more about Spring Native here. 

  • Serverless capabilities built on Knative are now in beta*. Run serverless workloads on various Kubernetes distributions across cloud environments with automated scaling, routing, and a consistent event messaging format. Learn more and try out the serverless capability in the Cloud Native Runtimes for VMware Tanzu beta here.

  • Tanzu Mission Control will begin exposing developer capabilities if you are using Tanzu Advanced*. Get a view into the applications you have deployed. Developers now have a "home base" where they will be able to view their apps, components, and related metrics, but will also become the centralized location for accessing additional tooling and services. 

  • API portal is in beta*. Provide developers with a library of APIs from multiple sources. This includes support for Spring Cloud Gateway commercial auto-generated OpenAPI documentation along with other general OpenAPI-compliant endpoints. This builds upon the recently released VMware Spring Cloud Gateway for Kubernetes. Find, try out, and use APIs in a self-service manner. 

These capabilities add value on VMware Cloud, but are also fully compatible with native public clouds and conformant Kubernetes distributions. We’re committed to offering our customers choice and flexibility as they are intentional about multi-cloud operation. 

We're also announcing VMware App Navigator service engagements. Adopting these new patterns doesn't make sense for an entire application portfolio. Boiling the ocean is an anti-pattern. During an App Navigator engagement, our experts bring tools and proven techniques to help you quickly discover and analyze targets for migration and refactoring, and match workloads to your preferred landing zones. We’ll build an outcomes-based backlog and validate your modernization strategy with hands-on work.    

Partnering for success in all three cloud transformations

Cloud transformation is a daunting undertaking. Many are frozen in analysis paralysis with too many options and not enough flexibility. VMware is here to help. The breadth of VMware's multi-cloud infrastructure, DevSecOps solutions, and modern application portfolio make it a unique partner. Whichever cloud transformation journey you're on, VMware has solutions and expertise. 

Works cited

To Recover From The Pandemic, Automate Operations To Free Budget For Innovation, a commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of VMware, September 2020

DevSecOps: Application Security Tool Use Between Development and Information Security Nears Parity, 451 Research, part of S&P Global Market Intelligence,  January 2020

2020 State of Spring, VMware, September 2020

*There is no commitment or obligation that beta features or products will become generally available. This information is provided without warranty of any kind, express or implied, and is not a commitment to deliver any material, code, or functionality, and should not be relied upon in making purchasing decisions regarding VMware offerings. This article may contain hyperlinks to non-VMware websites that are created and maintained by third parties who are solely responsible for the content on such websites.

About the Author

Dormain Drewitz

Dormain leads Product Marketing and Content Strategy for VMware Tanzu. Before VMware she was Senior Director of Pivotal Platform Ecosystem, including RabbitMQ, and Customer Marketing. Previously, she was Director of Product Marketing for Mobile and Pivotal Data Suite. Prior to Pivotal, she was Director of Platform Marketing at Riverbed Technology. Prior to Riverbed, she spent over 5 years as a technology investment analyst, closely following enterprise infrastructure software companies and industry trends. Dormain holds a B. A. in History from the University of California at Los Angeles.

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