posted

Authored by Wendy Cartee, Sr. Director of Cloud-Native Marketing

We are excited to announce the release of VMware Photon™ Platform 1.2 today!

Photon Platform is a container-optimized cloud infrastructure solution for deploying and operating cloud-native applications and microservices. It offers highly secure, fully integrated virtual compute, networking, and storage to simplify and secure cloud-native applications. The 1.2 release adds enhancements across Kubernetes, compute, networking, security, and storage to deliver enterprise-ready capabilities needed to deploy and operationalize Kubernetes clusters.

What’s New

Support for Kubernetes 1.6

Photon Platform 1.2 now includes support for the latest release of Kubernetes. Announced during KubeCon Berlin, Kubernetes 1.6 enhances scale and automation to deploy multiple workloads to multiple users on a cluster. The key functions introduced were:

  • Dynamic storage provisioning (moved to stable state)
  • RBAC or role-based access control (started beta)
  • Automation and controlled scheduling enhancements

Simpler Cluster Management

Photon Platform 1.2 simplifies lifecycle management of Kubernetes clusters. Users have the ability to customize cluster sizing via flavors and quotas, enabling sizing up and down without tickets. 1.2 also now supports the ability for users to upgrade Kubernetes with a few clicks and to choose a desired Kubernetes version when spinning up a cluster. This enables a smooth development staging to production pipeline and eases upgrades of Kubernetes clusters.

Static and Dynamic Persistent Volumes

Photon Platform 1.2 is fully integrated with VMware vSAN™ enabling users to leverage VMware’s production-grade virtual storage platform. Users are able to spin up both static and dynamic persistent volumes on the platform, enabling applications running in Kubernetes to maintain state without any additional work for the developer. This support enables high availability (HA) for stateful applications, delivering the resiliency and availability characteristics found in enterprise-class shared storage for cloud-native apps.

Master and Worker Node High Availability

In addition to HA for stateful applications, the 1.2 release also introduces rolling upgrade capabilities for master and worker nodes. Upgrades and downgrades frequently lead to downtime for master and worker nodes. In order to maximize uptime during upgrades and downgrades, we added new automation processes that update the software versions running on Kubernetes master and worker nodes with minimal downtime.

This rolling upgrade process is part of our new multi-master Kubernetes cluster deployment, which leverages a load balancer front-ending the Kubernetes master nodes. This allows for critical Kubernetes components to be upgraded one at a time without impacting users in the process of consuming a Kubernetes cluster.

Pod Networking and Enhancements

With this release, Photon Platform now integrates VMware NSX® and Kubernetes out of the box with pod-level networking for Kubernetes clusters. In beta, this networking function allows developers to have their own segmented distinct virtual networks, offering data isolation and operationalization of containerized applications.

The deeper NSX integration also enables users to leverage additional enhancements such as embedded DHCP services, overlapping IP addresses across subnets, floating IP addresses, and creation of multiple routers in a project. These new networking features allow developers to be specific about the addressing of their workloads, along with the ability to create CI/CD pipelines that deterministically consume a known address space during repeated tests.

AD/LDAP and Security

Photon Platform 1.2 adds several new security enhancements for enterprise environments.

  • Photon Platform now integrates Lightwave 1.2, VMware’s open source active directory and LDAP authentication system providing in-depth role-based access control.
  • The release also provides OpenID Connect (OIDC) for authentication with Kubernetes through the standards-based OIDC protocol. The net result is that Kubernetes API requests are authenticated via a highly-available and scalable authentication cluster and kept secure for enterprises.
  • Project users can now upload images with more control to ensure other projects don’t inadvertently impact their images. For example, a project user can add controls to prevent other project users from accidentally deleting his/her image. When uploading images, project users are able to limit access to those images and control who can use or delete those images.

Quota Based Dynamic Resource Allocation

This release replaces resource tickets with quotas. Quota, unlike resource tickets, can be resized by a system administrator. This simplifies resource management in the cluster. With 1.2, a tenant can now increase or decrease resource allocation by using a quota setting. This provides faster resource allocation and increases the accuracy of resources consumed and available in the cluster.

SDK and API

Photon Platform now publishes an OpenAPI 2.0 API specification for our APIs that is simpler to use and operationalize. New APIs were also added to manage resource quotas on per tenant and project. We are also announcing the availability of a Go SDK that reflects these new API changes which simplify the development of plugins and drivers that enable Photon Platform to be consumed “as code” by DevOps and SRE teams.

Availability

Photon Platform 1.2 is available today. Please contact your VMware representative to find out more.

Photon Platform Product Information

For more information about VMware Photon Platform, please check out the Photon Platform product page on VMware website http://www.vmware.com/products/photon-platform.html and follow us on @cloudnativeapps.

DockerCon 2017

VMware is a gold sponsor of DockerCon 2017 and we will highlight Photon Platform, VMware vSphere® Integrated Containers™, NSX, vSAN, and many other new demos in our booth. Come by to visit us, meet our developers, and pick up cool giveaways.

VMware, Photon, vSAN, NSX, vSphere, and vSphere Integrated Containers are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions.