OASIS CAMP Aims To Set Specs for Interoperable, Portable PaaS, Clouds

OASIS is taking steps to create a new cloud standard to let users and providers easily deploy and manage applications – even across clouds from multiple vendors. OASIS’ Cloud Application Management for Platforms (CAMP) aims to set the stage for interoperable, portable PaaS and is backed by Oracle, Red Hat, Rackspace, Cloudsoft, Huawei, CloudBees, and Software AG.

Tags: appdev, cloud, CAMP, Gartner, OASIS, PaaS, platform as a service, portability, standard,

camp_01OASIS is taking steps to create a new cloud standard that would let users and providers easily deploy and manage applications – even across clouds from multiple vendors. OASIS’ Cloud Application Management for Platforms (CAMP) project will develop industry standards for managing apps for both public and private clouds.

CAMP would also apply to the packaging and deployment of such cloud-based apps, according to statements from Laurent Liscia, OASIS executive director and CEO. CAMP is a major step toward creating a network of interoperable and portable cloud systems, he added. 

In 2010 seven vendors got together to work on this issue, including Oracle, Red Hat, Rackspace, Cloudsoft, Huawei, CloudBees, and Software AG. They moved the project to OASIS so vendors could participate in an open, collaborative setting. “CAMP is one of several new cloud standardization projects at OASIS that make use of JSON and REST,” Liscia added. 

Get more on OASIS CAMP effort

In specific, OASIS CAMP Technical Committee provides a common basis for developing multi-cloud management tools as well as offers cloud providers and consumers a REST-based approach to managing applications, according to an OASIS statement.

“Cloud vendors can use [CAMP] to develop new PaaS offerings that will interact with independently developed tools and components.”

CAMP Technical Committee
OASIS


As to its impact, CAMP will let users manage their application lifecycles as well as easily move apps between clouds. Further, companies would avoid vendor lock-in, and be able to migrate their cloud apps from one PaaS vendor to another by simply mapping requirements of their applications to available functionalities of an underlying PaaS platform.

CAMP will provide a common development vocabulary and API that will work across multiple clouds – all without excessive customization. CAMP will also be compatible with PaaS-aware and PaaS-unaware application development environments, both offline and in the cloud, Liscia added.

The OASIS CAMP technical committee document so far proposes an “interoperable protocol” that cloud implementers would use to package and deploy their applications. Technically, CAMP defines interfaces for (a) self-service provisioning, (b) monitoring, and (c) control. Based on REST, CAMP is expected to foster an ecosystem of common tools, plugins, libraries and frameworks that will allow vendors to offer greater value-add.

Inside the OASIS CAMP Project for
Interoperable, Portable PaaS Clouds

In August, OASIS released a draft spec document to define the artifacts and APIs that need to be offered by a PaaS cloud to manage the building, running, administration, monitoring and patching of applications in the cloud.

OASIS described the goal is “to enable interoperability among self-service interfaces to PaaS clouds by defining artifacts and formats that can be used with any conforming cloud and enable independent vendors to create tools and services that interact with any conforming cloud using the defined interfaces. Cloud vendors can use these interfaces to develop new PaaS offerings that will interact with independently developed tools and components.”

OASIS also described why the CAMP work is needed. 

“There are multiple commercial PaaS offerings in existence using languages such as Java, Python and Ruby and frameworks such as Spring and Rails. Although these offerings differ in such aspects as programming languages, application frameworks, etc., there are inherent similarities in the way they manage the lifecycle of the applications that are targeted for, and deployed upon them. The core. . . proposition of this specification is that these similarities can be leveraged to produce a generic application and platform management API that is language, framework, and platform neutral.”

OASIS says PaaS consumers and Vendors will benefit. 

PaaS Consumers will receive: 

Portability between clouds. By standardizing the management API for the use cases around deploying, stopping, starting, and updating applications, this specification increases consumers’ ability to port their applications between PaaS offerings.

Easy availability as plugins. It’s likely that implementations of this specification will appear as plugins for application development environments (ADEs) and application management systems. Past experience has shown that, over time, such generic implementations are likely to receive more attention and be of higher quality than the implementations written for solitary, proprietary application management interfaces.

 

PaaS Vendors will receive:

Grows the Pie. By increasing the portability of applications between PaaS offerings, this management API helps “grow the pie” of the PaaS marketplace by addressing one of the key pain points for PaaS consumers.

Low-cost Interoperability. Vendors can use these interfaces to develop new PaaS offerings that will interact with independently developed tools and components.

Freedom to invest in other differentiators. Because the strength and features of a PaaS offering’s application management API are unlikely to be perceived as key differentiators from other PaaS offerings, the existence of a consensus management API allows providers to leverage the experience and insight of the specification’s contributors and invest their design resources in other, more valuable areas. 
 
Here’s what some of the large vendors supporters say about the OASIS CAMP effort:

“Oracle looks forward to continuing to help define a simple REST-based approach for management of cloud-based applications. In addition, CAMP can provide a framework for extensibility to support the evolution of products, while enabling portability across clouds and compatibility with PaaS-aware and PaaS-unaware application development environments.”    
                      
Jeff Mischkinsky,
senior director, Oracle Fusion Middleware
Oracle Corp.


“Software AG welcomes the formation of the CAMP Technical Committee. As a co-author of the CAMP specification, we hope our contributions to this TC effort will serve to advance CAMP as a standard that is broadly adopted, enabling interoperability between vendor products while offering increased choice for customers. We are excited about the emerging standards efforts in the cloud space, that is expected to transform the way business is done in the future.”

 – Prasad Yendluri,
vice president, deputy CTO 
Software AG

One analyst familiar with OASIS’ latest PaaS work also likes the initiative. “Companies are starting to experiment with PaaS, but even as they do, it becomes clear that variations between the vendors’ application interfaces will make it hard to move applications from platform to platform. That looks a lot like vendor lock-in, and it’s putting customers off,” said Rachel Chalmers, VP of Research at The 451 Group, in a statement. It’s good that vendors are addressing the issue within the OASIS framework, she added.

 




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