Cloud Application Management for Platforms
By user756764 on Aug 30, 2012
Today Oracle, along with CloudBees, Cloudsoft, Huawei, Rackspace, Red Hat, and Software AG, published the Cloud Application Management for Platforms (CAMP) specification. This spec deals with application management in the context of PaaS. It defines a model (consisting of a set resources and their relationships), a REST-based API for manipulating that model, and a packaging format for getting applications (and their attendant metadata) into and out of the platform.
My colleague, Mark Carlson, has already provided an excellent writeup on the spec here. The following, additional points bear emphasizing:
- CAMP is language, framework and platform neutral; it should be equally applicable to the task of deploying and managing Ruby on Rails applications as Java/Spring applications (as Node.js applications, etc.)
- CAMP only covers the interactions between a Cloud Consumer and a Cloud Provider (using the definitions of these terms provided in the NIST Cloud Computing Reference Architecture). The internal APIs used by the Cloud Provider to, for example, deploy additional platform services (e.g. a new message queuing service) are out of CAMP's scope.
- CAMP supports the management of the entire lifecycle of the application (e.g. start/stop, suspend/resume, etc.) not just the deployment of the components that make up the application.
- Complexity is the antithesis of interoperability. One of CAMP's goals is to be as broadly interoperable as possible. To this end, the authors of CAMP tried to "make things as simple as possible, but no simpler". For example, JSON is the only serialization format used in the spec (although Providers can extend this to support additional serialization formats such as XML). It remains to be seen whether we can preserve this simplicity as the spec is processed by OASIS. So far, those who have indicated an interest in collaborating on the spec seem to be of a like mind with regards to the need for simplicity.
- The flip side to simplicity is the knowledge that you undoubtedly missed something that is important to someone. To make up for this, CAMP is designed to be extensible. The idea is to ship what we know will work, allow implementers to extend the spec, then re-factor the spec to incorporate the most popular extensions.
Anyone interested in this effort, particularly those of you using PaaS-level services, is encouraged to join the forthcoming OASIS TC. As you may have noticed, CAMP is a bit of a departure from some of the more monolithic management standards that have preceded it. The idea is to develop simple, discrete standards targeted to address specific interoperability and portability problems and tie these standards together with common patterns based on REST and HATEOAS. I'm excited to see how this idea plays out.