Red Hat has made available the latest instance of Red Hat Runtimes, a suite of lightweight open source components and frameworks that makes it easier to discover the middleware most appropriate for building a specific type of application.
James Falkner, product marketing director for Runtimes at Red Hat, said as organizations embrace cloud-native application architectures based on microservices it’s become increasingly challenging to determine what middleware to deploy optimally and where. Red Hat Runtimes not only makes it easier to navigate all those options, Falkner said, but all the components and frameworks are certified to be pre-integrated.
The latest version of Red Hat Runtimes adds support for Open Liberty, a lightweight runtime for building Java applications developed by IBM. Red Hat was acquired last year by IBM.
The latest installment of Red Hat Runtimes also provides access to what has become a standard distribution of Node.js based on Red Hat Software Collections that will be implemented across all Red Hat offerings.
Finally, Red Hat has also added support for Red Hat Single Sign-On, an access control framework based on the Keycloak project.
Falkner said Red Hat Runtimes also serves to reduce the total cost by providing a single subscription through which organizations can access everything from container runtimes to the 3Scale application programming interface (API) management middleware, which Red Hat acquired in 2016.
Very few IT organizations these days are standardized on a single class of middleware, especially as they embrace microservices-based applications built using containers. Most IT teams for the foreseeable future will need a flexible way to access multiple runtimes in support of everything from monolithic applications based on Java to applications built using Node.js code deployed using Docker containers.
Rather than a piecemeal approach to the middleware infrastructure required to build, deploy and integrate all those applications, Falkner said Red Hat Runtimes provides a more holistic approach.
It’s not clear how much or even whether IT organizations are centrally managing middleware in the age of DevOps and the cloud. Historically, many IT organizations preferred to standardize on a single application server platform to deploy various classes of middleware. However, many developers today are deciding what middleware to include within their application stacks without much input from a central IT function.
Via Red Hat Runtimes, Red Hat is trying to make a case for providing developers with the flexibility they cherish in the form of a subscription service that provides IT teams with a modicum of control over what middleware gets employed.
Tensions between DevOps teams and central IT organizations have arguably never been higher. In fact, many DevOps teams are operating within lines of business that are outside the direct control of centralized IT. As such, the level of standardization that can be imposed by central IT organizations has become more constrained. Many centralized IT organizations are now trying to influence middleware platform decisions rather than outright make decrees that might get ignored anyway.
Regardless of the middleware platform choice that ultimately gets made, however, the one thing that most centralized IT teams will have to come to terms with is finding a way to support it.