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Red Hat and Apache OpenWhisk

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Unless you’ve been on a complete media blackout for the last year or so (entirely understandable) you’ve likely heard a lot about Serverless (or FaaS – Function as a Service). Serverless is a major shift in the way developers build and deliver software systems – it greatly simplifies development by insulating the developer from infrastructure concerns and pushes the envelope on cost and efficiency of execution.

Various groups at Red Hat have been investigating Serverless for some time now – last year we started our own experimental Kubernetes-native serverless project, Funktion, and recently announced that we’re integrating Amazon cloud services (including Lambda) into OpenShift. We’ve also been busy looking at other open source serverless projects.

Pretty much everything interesting in technology is happening in open source today and that’s definitely true for serverless. There are a number of other interesting open source projects including Fission, Kubeless, IronFunctions, and the Serverless Framework to name a few, and we took a good look at them all.

During that research, it became abundantly clear that, of the various open source technologies we evaluated, Apache OpenWhisk had the most advanced feature-set, was the most mature code-base and had the largest ecosystem of collaborators. So as Ben Browning (engineering lead for serverless at Red Hat) recently announced on the Apache OpenWhisk mailing list – Red Hat has decided to refocus our serverless efforts on Apache OpenWhisk and we look forward to collaborating with the individuals and organizations already involved.

Our immediate plan is to help finish up the Kubernetes integration work and get Apache OpenWhisk running on OpenShift so you can try it for yourself. Beyond that, we have aspirations of integration with our online developer SaaS openshift.io and our other middleware services running in OpenShift.


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