Community Blog Comprehensive Understanding of Cloud-native Technologies

Comprehensive Understanding of Cloud-native Technologies

This article explains why container technology is sustaining the revolution of software delivery.

"In the future, the software will definitely grow on the cloud." This is the core assumption of the cloud-native concept. The so-called "cloud-native" actually defines the optimal path for enabling applications to exploit the capabilities and value of the cloud. On this path, "cloud-native" is out of the question without "applications," which act as the carrier. In addition, container technology is one of the important approaches for implementing this concept and sustaining the revolution of software delivery.

Getting Started with Kubernetes | A Brief History of Cloud-native Technologies

What Is Cloud-native? How Is Cloud-native Implemented?

Definition of Cloud-native

Many people are asking, "What exactly is cloud-native?"

Actually, cloud-native is the best path or practice. In more detail, cloud-native provides users with the best practice of exploiting the capabilities and value of cloud in a user-friendly, agile, scalable, and replicable way.

Cloud-native is a concept that provides guidance on software architecture design. Software designed around this concept has the following advantages:

First, it is naturally "born on the cloud and grows on the cloud."

Second, it is naturally integrated with "cloud" by making the best use of cloud capabilities, to give "cloud" full play.

The greatest value and vision of cloud-native are that future software is born and grows on the cloud and complies with a new model of software development, release, and O&M to ensure that the software maximizes the use of cloud capabilities. Now, let's think about why container technology is revolutionary.

In fact, the revolutionary nature of container technology in IT is very similar to that of the container technology in transportation. To be specific, the container technology enables applications to be defined as "self-contained." Only in this way can applications be released on the cloud in an agile, scalable, and replicable manner to exert cloud capabilities. This is also the revolutionary impact of the container technology on the cloud. Therefore, container technology is the cornerstone of cloud-native technologies.

Technological Scope of Cloud-native

Cloud-native technologies cover the following aspects:

  1. Definition and Development of Cloud Applications: This process includes application definition and image creation, the configuration of continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD), messages, streaming, and databases.
  2. Orchestration and Management of Cloud Applications: This is also the focus of Kubernetes. This process includes application orchestration and scheduling, service discovery and governance, remote calls, API gateways, and service mesh.
  3. Monitoring and Observability: This part emphasizes how cloud applications are monitored, logged, and traced, and how destructive tests are implemented on the cloud. This is also the concept of chaos engineering.
  4. Underlying Technologies of Cloud-native: Technologies such as container runtime, cloud-native storage technology, and cloud-native network technology.
  5. Cloud-native Toolkit: In addition to the preceding core technologies, use many supporting ecosystems or peripheral tools. For example, the toolkit includes process automation and configuration management, container image repositories, cloud-native security technologies, and cloud-based password management.
  6. Serverless: Serverless is a special form of PaaS. It defines a more "extreme and abstract" application writing method, incorporating concepts like "Functions as a Service (FaaS)" and "Backend as a Service (BaaS)". The most typical feature of FaaS and BaaS is pay-as-you-go. Therefore, serverless billing is also important.

Two Theories of the Cloud-native Concept

After learning about the technological scope of cloud-native, it is concluded that cloud-native includes a lot of technologies, the essentials of which are similar. In essence, cloud-native technologies are based on two theories:

  1. Immutable Infrastructure: This is currently implemented through container images. Immutable infrastructure means that an application's infrastructure must be immutable, self-contained, and self-described, and is completely capable of migration between different environments.
  2. Cloud Application Orchestration: Currently, cloud-native technologies are implemented based on "container design patterns" proposed by Google, which will be discussed in Kubernetes articles.

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Cloud Native: From Docker to Kubernetes and to Service Meshes

In this blog, an Alibaba engineer discusses his thoughts and understanding of Docker, Kubernetes, and Service Meshes like Istio and everything else Cloud Native.
In today's landscape of cloud native, cloud native may start with Kubernetes but end up going on to embrace Service Mesh solutions like Istio. It's just like the progression we saw throughout this blog, first there was Docker, and then Kubernetes, and now there's also Service Meshes.

Embarking into the Cloud Native Era

Cloud native is a set of groundbreaking ideas that stimulate the development of brand-new technologies, such as containers, microservices, and service meshes. Alibaba Cloud is the first technology company in China to deploy cloud-native technologies. Alibaba Cloud attended 2019 KubeCon + CloudNativeCon + Open Source Summit (June 24 to June 26) and shared its cutting-edge technologies and applications based on the cloud native initiative with users worldwide. During the event, Alibaba Cloud also launched products and services such as ACK Edge Kubernetes and a cloud-native application management and delivery system.

This article discusses the cloud native era and how Alibaba Cloud embarked into this exciting new frontier in the cloud computing space from the very beginning.

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Serverless Workflow

Serverless Workflow is a fully managed serverless cloud service used to coordinate the execution of multiple distributed tasks. It is committed to simplifying tedious tasks, such as task coordination, state management, and error handling required to develop and run business processes. It enables you to focus on business logic development.

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Aliuser1999 January 18, 2021 at 2:57 pm


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