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HPE embraces Docker as the engine for its Helion Development Platform


Guest Post: Omri Gazitt, VP Product & Services, HPE Helion

Hewlett Packard Enterprise announces the launch of HPE Helion Development Platform 2.0, as a key element of a comprehensive lineup of new HPE solutions for the Docker ecosystem at DockerCon Europe.

We are excited to announce HPE Helion Development Platform 2.0 (HDP 2.0), our enterprise grade Platform-as-a-Service, built on the Cloud Foundry® runtime.  HDP 2.0 is a beefy release, including several features designed to help enterprises deliver a platform that makes developers dramatically more productive, while providing IT with the controls and flexibility that they need.

As excited as we are about the HDP 2.0, based on my many conversations with enterprise customers and developers, I’d like to frame what we’re doing and why it’s important for our customers.  

Enterprise and government customers talk to me all the time about the disruption that they see in IT.  They are often piloting or extending the use of cloud in their organizations, but they still want help understanding fundamental questions.  One very common question they ask is this: how specifically can the cloud help us move faster, get more agility, and deliver value to customers and partners more effectively?  

Although there’s no one line answer, at Hewlett Packard Enterprise we have a clear and concrete perspective.  On this question specifically, we believe that the cloud is about making developers more productive, helping them do new things very quickly, with a minimum of friction.  This perspective fuels our drive to deliver the HDP product line, and it’s been a key guidepost for HDP 2.0, and why we’re so excited about this release.  To explain this, let’s dive into how HDP 2.0 helps it helps enterprises accelerate their developers.  

Leveraging Docker to deploy microservices into a managed Cloud Foundry-based Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS)  

Let’s start with microservices, which are fast emerging as a new and modern style for designing and building applications. Simply speaking, the microservices architecture enables developers to design applications as independently deployable services that have stable contracts and are composed together through standard discovery and communication protocols. 

This microservices approach speeds development--developers can add new components, services or features more quickly, as well as extend and improve each of these independent services in isolation.  Microservices enable more of a modular “bite sized chunks,” style of development, which makes it possible for developers to dramatically shorten the distance between releases. Instead of twice yearly or quarterly releases, a common cadence for many enterprise developers I speak to, microservices help enable developers to target releases on a monthly, weekly, or even a daily cadence.  

That sounds great, of course, but enterprise customers then follow up this question, “Ok, so how do we get these microservices deployed?”

Our new HDP 2.0 leverages Docker to answer this question.  Enterprises using HDP 2.0 can deploy microservices as Docker containers.  By deploying their microservices as Docker containers inside a Platform-as-a-Service, enterprise customers now get the velocity and agility benefits that microservices provide, with the enterprise grade controls of integrated health monitoring, logging, and auto-scaling that the HDP 2.0 platform provides.  Speed for developers with the controls IT needs—this is how we’re making HDP 2.0 a great value proposition for our enterprise customers.


Introducing HPE Helion Code Engine, bringing a CI/CD (continuous integration/continuous delivery) toolchain to enterprises

Microservices are a key enabler to driving developer agility.  Another important enabler is a modern set of developer tools, designed to make it as simple as possible for a development team to commit code and run that code against their test suites, all the way through to deploying code into production, in an automated fashion.  This toolset is commonly referred to as a Continuous Integration-Continuous Delivery toolchain (or CI/CD for short).

CI/CD is a vital toolset for any organization that wants to gain the speed and agility of cloud development.  At its best, a CI/CD system not only streamlines the process of going from a code commit (where a dev team declares a piece of code finished and passing all relevant tests) to a code deployment (where that code is now running in production), it offers safeguards and rollback capabilities so that if there are any problems with a commit, it’s easily backed out with no disruption to production sites.

With HDP 2.0, we are including our own CI/CD toolchain, the HPE Helion Cloud Engine, designed for exactly this purpose.  A full CI/CD toolchain, HPE Helion Cloud Engine allows enterprise developers to automate the build/test/deploy cycle triggered by checkins into Git repositories and into our Cloud Foundry runtime, with intermediate artifacts that are pushed to the Docker Hub or an organization’s Docker Trusted Registry. In addition, HPE Helion Code Engine also integrates HPE Software’s StormRunner tool for load testing a microservice once it’s been deployed to a staging environment—so out of the box, we not only streamline the process, we simplify the load testing, a common and needed safety check in an enterprise CI/CD process.


helion code engine.png

Deeper integration with OpenStack® Application Services and Operational tools

Lastly, HDP 2.0 includes important new features at the Application Services and manageability layers, which distinguish it from PaaS solutions that only focus on the application host. 

First, our Database-as-a-Service offering (based on OpenStack Trove) adds support for three clustered data services – MySQL, MongoDB, and Redis clusters, as well as a technical preview of Vertica delivered as a service.  Besides supporting deployment of well-tuned database instances and clusters, DBaaS offers health monitoring, automatic backups, and log aggregation. 

Second, we are including the first commercial implementation of OpenStack Cue, a Queuing-as-a-Service project, with support for deploying and managing RabbitMQ clusters.  Data and messaging services are critical building blocks in distributed applications, and by deeply integrating our PaaS with our Application Services, developers can create applications that can bind to production-grade, IT-sanctioned application services.

Finally, when deployed on Helion OpenStack 2.0, HDP 2.0 services inherently compose with and take advantage of the management and operational aspects of that platform, including integrated monitoring via OpenStack Monasca, integrated log aggregation via Logstash, and integrated Operations and management via the Helion Ops Console.

Delivering these key improvements in deploying microservices as Docker containers, offering the new HPE Helion Code Engine, and providing deep integration with Application Services, is what makes HDP 2.0 such a strong release.  These features make our Cloud Foundry-based PaaS offering much more enterprise grade, particularly for enterprise developers seeking to leverage the power of the cloud development in their organization.  I encourage you to take a closer look at HPE Helion Development Platform 2.0 today!

Learn more

HPE is unveiling the following solutions supporting Docker:

  • HPE Helion Development Platform 2.0
  • StormRunner and AppPulse
  • Docker Machine Driver for HPE OneView
  • 3PAR StorServ and StoreVirtual Storage Arrays
  • Docker Verified Architecture
  • Docker Reference Guide
  • Technology Services Data Center Care for Docker

For more information read the full announcement

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The OpenStack™ Word Mark and OpenStack Logo are either registered trademarks/service marks or trademarks/service marks of the OpenStack Foundation, in the United States and other countries and are used with the OpenStack Foundation's permission. We are not affiliated with, endorsed or sponsored by the OpenStack Foundation, or the OpenStack community.


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About the Author


I manage the HPE Helion social media and website teams promoting the enterprise cloud solutions at HPE for hybrid, public, and private clouds. I was previously at Dell promoting their Cloud solutions and was the open source community manager for OpenStack and at Rackspace and Citrix Systems. While at Citrix Systems, I founded the Citrix Developer Network, developed global alliance and licensing programs, and even once added audio to the DOS ICA client with assembler. Follow me at @SpectorID