Meet Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.8—Because Time to Value Is Contagious

September 19, 2016 Jared Ruckle

The one metric you should optimize for? Time to value. https://t.co/HgZhVUdOSu

— Pivotal (@pivotal) August 29, 2016

Today, Pivotal released Pivotal Cloud Foundry (PCF) 1.8, a set of enhancements designed to help customers maximize the most important metric in business today: time to value.

The recent SpringOne Platform conference echoed this theme. The phrase “minutes, not days” was heard over and over as speakers described their pace of software delivery. Bloomberg, Comcast, Citi, and others shared their stories, recounting the peaks and valleys of their journey to microservices, continuous delivery, and a DevOps culture.

And once executives feel the bottom-line impact of a much faster time to value, the impact of new code hitting production more often, they want more of it.

Consider Home Depot’s presentation at SpringOne Platform. The company committed to a digital transformation about a year ago. They started with two critical projects on Pivotal Cloud Foundry, then accelerated adoption once they experienced success. They now run 3000+ apps on the product!

Which brings us to PCF’s new features that help customers run more apps on Pivotal Cloud Foundry.

TCP Routing & The Platform Effect

When customers speak, we listen: TCP Routing is now available with Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.8. Many different workloads rely on non-HTTP/S traffic: legacy systems, and IoT services to name a few. These can all be deployed and operated with Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.8 with TCP Routing. What’s more, TCP Routes are entirely self-service for the developer, once they are configured. Further, apps that ingest non-HTTP traffic get all the same load balanced, self-healing goodness that web applications enjoy in PCF.

With support for HTTP/S and TCP routing, customers can run a larger portion of their enterprise app portfolios with Pivotal Cloud Foundry. This accelerates “the platform effect”: the larger the scale of the platform for the customer, the more efficient it is to operate. Add more apps to a platform, grow the number of engineers developing against that platform, while keeping your operations teams comparatively constant.

Organizations go faster as they invest more into Pivotal Cloud Foundry. Success begets further (and larger) success.

Go Faster, and Go Secure

The goals of “developing software faster” and “meeting regulatory & compliance obligations” can seem at odds. In reality, they can be completely aligned, if your platform is “secure by default.” That’s our goal with Pivotal Cloud Foundry, as evidenced by a new security feature in this release. PCF 1.8 simplifies encryption-in-transit with the IPsec Add-On. It operates within the platform, so the developer-operator workflow remains as efficient as ever.

Just The Facts, The Same Set Of Facts

Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.8 also adds a new integrated log viewing feature for PCF Metrics—bringing metrics, events, and logs together in a single UI. What’s more, this unified view is organized by time, replete with search and filter controls. So when there’s an anomaly or an issue, developers and operators can narrow in on a specific time slice and automatically see the logs that correspond to that moment. This dramatically simplifies troubleshooting—developers and operators have a shared baseline understanding of what happened and when.

Feature highlights from Pivotal Cloud Foundry 1.8 at a glance:

For Developers: Security: For Operators:

DEVELOPERS

TCP Routing

Developers can now run applications that feature non-HTTP/S TCP protocols with PCF 1.8. Once TCP Routing is configured, developers can create TCP Routes with just a few commands from the CLI without filing tickets with IT. The feature also makes it easier to comply with some regulatory requirements: with TCP Routing, users can terminate the TLS as close to an app as possible, so that packets are not decrypted before reaching the application level.

Layers of network address translation that occur in Pivotal Cloud Foundry in support of TCP Routing

Layers of network address translation that occur in Pivotal Cloud Foundry in support of TCP Routing

Log-Integrated Metrics & Monitoring

Application logs are now integrated into the PCF Metrics 1.1 service. Developers can now easily view log details correlated with a timeline of metrics and events. When health or performance issues occur, developers can focus on that particular window of time, and the logs for that moment in time are automatically shown. Search and filtering controls allow for instant access to specific areas and terms of interest.

PCF Metrics, now with integrated logs

PCF Metrics, now with integrated logs

MySQL 1.8.0

The new MySQL tile includes a number of data safeguards, including a replication canary that alerts operators when cluster health may be compromised. These safeguards have also been applied to MySQL 1.7.0 to help users be secure across upgrades. A new bootstrap errand delivers a simple way to automate the startup of a multi-node data cluster with a single command. Other enhancements include additional backup targets (specifically Ceph and SCP), and multiple service plans.

RabbitMQ 1.7.0

The RabbitMQ tile is updated to support multi-subnets within multiple availability zones, and now includes RabbitMQ 3.6.3.

Redis 1.6.0

In the updated Redis tile, metrics are now emitted via the firehose. This enables operators to monitor service health and usage. It also features Redis 3.2.1, enabling developers to use its geospatial APIs and BITFIELD command.

SECURITY

IPsec Add-On 1.5.37

Encrypt IP data flow within Pivotal Cloud Foundry. The IPSec Add-on offers “encryption in transit” for data between hosts, between CF routers, and between security gateways and hosts. The 1.5.37 version offers improved startup logic for subnet config and enhancements to strongSwan, the open source IPSec VPN at the core of the module.This add-on, and these new features, simplify the path to PCI compliance for workloads running on PCF.

OPERATORS

Service Networks

Service networks allow operators to define networks that leverage BOSH and its dynamic networking capabilities. With service networks, IP selection is managed by BOSH and completely automated for the user. This eliminates the chance of IP conflicts due to human error, ensuring that PCF services get IPs in networks that are not in use by other deployments. In the future, this feature will be used to enable new on-demand services for Pivotal Cloud Foundry.

Concourse for PCF

One of the first applications to take advantage of service networks is Concourse, a modern CI/CD tool that powers continuous integration for the Cloud Foundry project itself. With our upcoming release of the Concourse for PCF 1.8 tile, application developers will be able to provision dedicated, on-demand service instances of Concourse for specific PCF spaces. Interested in trying out the new Concourse tile when it hits Beta? Contact your account team, they will pass on your request.

Interested in more details? Check out the 1.8 release notes that describe additional capabilities and new experimental features.

About the Author

Jared Ruckle

Jared works in product marketing for Pivotal Cloud Foundry.

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