CloudBees Embraces Kubernetes to Advance CI/CD

A CloudBees effort to make it easier to deploy the Jenkins continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) platform is taking shape, thanks to Kubernetes container orchestration software and support for the Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform.

CloudBees CEO Sacha Labourey says containers will make it substantially easier to set up the open source CI/CD platform. Longer term, organizations will be able to take advantage of microservices to invoke subsets of the Jenkins platform.

As part of that effort, Labourey says CloudBees is making CloudBees Jenkins Enterprise edition available on the Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform because that’s the only viable on-premises Kubernetes-based platform there is in terms of overall adoption.

Support for Kubernetes comes via an open source Jenkins X project, which, among other things, reduces the number of virtual machines required to stand up Jenkins by as much as 20 percent.

Labourey says CI/CD platforms need to evolve alongside microservices, which are now driving most digital business transformation projects. The rate at which those applications are being built is forcing more organizations to adopt modern DevOps processes, he adds. CloudBees early this month revealed it has seen a 60 percent overall increase in revenue and a 77 percent growth in subscription revenue. The company claims it added 69 percent more customers in 2017 than it did in 2016.

It’s not exactly clear how much DevOps adoption is being driven from the bottom up by developers versus managers from the top down. But Labourey says CloudBees is seeing more interest from top-level managers once they discover a development team has been successful—their interest is usually driven by a desire to replicate that success elsewhere across the organization.

Kubernetes winds up being critical, he adds, because it makes it easier to stand up a Jenkins CI/CD platform to serve as a foundation on which DevOps processes revolve. In fact, Kubernetes now provides a common layer of software infrastructure that can be found both on-premises and in the cloud, which in turn makes it more practical for many more organizations to embrace a hybrid cloud computing strategy. But many organizations may gain their first experience with Kubernetes when it comes bundled within some other application or platform.

There’s no doubt at this juncture the rate at which microservices-based on containers being employed in a production environment is starting to reach critical mass. That watershed event in turn forces IT organizations to reconsider everything from the number virtual machine licenses they might need to how production applications are managed and updated.

CloudBees is not only provider of a CI/CD platform embracing Kubernetes. But given the number of organizations that have embraced Jenkins, it’s clear Jenkins X represents a significant step forward for container adoption. After all, once an organization installs a CI/CD platform on top of Kubernetes, it’s not usually long after before they start looking around for what else can be installed on a similar cluster.

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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