Upbound Extends Reach of Crossplane Control Plane Service

Upbound today made available an edition of the Crossplane control plane that IT teams can deploy in an on-premises or cloud computing environment. The new edition of Crossplane can be centrally managed via the existing software-as-a-service (SaaS) implementation of Crossplane the company already provides.

Oren Teich, chief product officer at Upbound, said this option, dubbed Spaces, will also make it simpler for IT teams to deploy an instance of Crossplane across a hybrid cloud computing environment.

IT teams can also now run multiple managed control planes, eliminating the need to deploy an instance of a Kubernetes cluster for each control plane, noted Teich.

In addition, via Spaces, Upbound is making available in alpha tighter integration with Git repositories to make it simpler to push changes to IT environments. Spaces will be compatible with any version control service, including GitHub, GitLab and Bitbucket. Every control plane that runs on Upbound already has a configuration defined in a Git repository. With Git-synced configurations supported on GitHub, platform teams can then iterate on the definitions of their control plane’s application programming interfaces (APIs) within their repository and push them to their control plane without needing to manage the build or deployment pipeline.

That capability will enable IT teams to bootstrap a cloud platform in minutes and then authenticate to external services using the OpenID Connect (OIDC) framework. They can also manage control plane usage, manage operations, debug API calls flowing through control planes and integrate with logging and monitoring solutions.

Crossplane is an extension of the Kubernetes control plane that uses opinionated Crossplane composite resource definitions (XRDs) and Kubernetes custom resource definitions (CRDs) to integrate with legacy platforms. That capability makes it possible to centrally manage control planes across multiple clouds and on-premises IT environments.

Crossplane is an open source project originally developed by Upbound that is today being advanced under the auspices of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). The project provides a higher level of abstraction based on a declarative API through which IT teams can provision infrastructure to, for example, eliminate configuration drift.

In effect, control planes provide an alternative to relying on custom scripts to consistently make changes to IT environments at scale using APIs.

It’s not clear how quickly organizations are moving to centrally manage control planes, but the Upbound service is arriving as IT organizations are becoming increasingly sensitive to the total cost of IT. Each control plane employed today is managed in isolation, requiring organizations to hire IT staff to manage each type. Upbound is making a case for a centralized approach to managing infrastructure using an API familiar to organizations that run Kubernetes clusters but can be applied to both cloud-native and monolithic application environments.

The overall goal is to reduce the total cost of managing a broad mix of IT environments distributed from the network edge to the cloud and everywhere in between.

Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist with over 25 years of experience. He also contributed to IT Business Edge, Channel Insider, Baseline and a variety of other IT titles. Previously, Vizard was the editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise as well as Editor-in-Chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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