Introducing Red Hat OpenShift 4.2: Developers get an expanded and improved toolbox  

Today Red Hat announces Red Hat OpenShift 4.2 extending its commitment to simplifying and automating the cloud and empowering developers to innovate.

Red Hat OpenShift 4, introduced in May, is the next generation of Red Hat’s trusted enterprise Kubernetes platform, reengineered to address the complexity of managing container-based applications in production systems. It is designed as a self-managing platform with automatic software updates and lifecycle management across hybrid cloud environments, built on the trusted foundation of Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS. 

The Red Hat OpenShift 4.2 release focuses on tooling that is designed to deliver a developer-centric user experience. It also helps cluster administrators by easing the management of the platform and applications, with the availability of OpenShift migration tooling from 3.x to 4.x, as well as newly supported disconnected installs. 

How Developers can innovate on Kubernetes

Red Hat OpenShift is designed to help organizations implement a Kubernetes infrastructure that is designed for rapid application development and deployment. The result is a platform that enables IT operations and developers to collaborate together and effectively deploy containerized applications. 

With the OpenShift 4.2 release, developers have a streamlined Kubernetes experience, thanks to a dedicated developer perspective, new tooling and additional plugins that they can enable for container builds, CI/CD pipelines and serverless deployments. This empowers developers to focus on coding rather than dealing with the specifics of Kubernetes operations. 

Application topology view in developer console.

New developer perspective in the OpenShift Console.

Updates in OpenShift 4.2 to help developers include the availability of these client tools:

  • Web Console with a developer perspective so developers are able to focus on what matters to them, surfacing only information and configuration developers need to know. An enhanced UI for application topology and application builds makes it easier for developers to build, deploy and visualize containerized applications and cluster resources.
  • odo, a developer-focused command line interface that simplifies application development on OpenShift. Using a “git push” style interaction, this CLI helps developers who are unfamiliar with Kubernetes create applications on OpenShift without needing to understand the details of Kubernetes operations.
  • Red Hat OpenShift Connector for Microsoft Visual Studio Code, JetBrains IDE (including IntelliJ) and Eclipse Desktop IDE, making it easier to plug into existing developer pipelines. Developers can develop, build, debug and deploy their applications on OpenShift without leaving their favorite coding IDE.
  • Red Hat OpenShift Deployment Extension for Microsoft Azure DevOps. Users of this DevOps toolchain can now deploy their built applications to Azure Red Hat OpenShift, or any other OpenShift cluster directly from Microsoft Azure DevOps.

Visual studio plug-in view.

OpenShift on a laptop or desktop

With Red Hat CodeReady Containers now generally available, team members can develop on OpenShift on a laptop. A preconfigured OpenShift cluster is tailored for a laptop or desktop development making it easier to get going quickly with a personal cluster.

Service Mesh

Based on the Istio, Kiali and Jaeger projects and enhanced with Kubernetes Operators, OpenShift Service Mesh is designed to simplify the development, deployment and ongoing management of applications on OpenShift. It delivers a set of capabilities well suited for modern, cloud native applications such as microservices. This helps to free developer teams from the complex tasks of having to implement bespoke networking services for their applications and business logic. 

With Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh, recently made generally available on OpenShift 4, customers can benefit from an end-to-end developer-focused experience. This includes key capabilities such as tracing and measurement, visualization and observability, and “one-click” service mesh installation and configuration. Operational and security benefits of the service mesh include encryption of east/west traffic in the cluster and integration with an API gateway from Red Hat 3scale.

Enhanced visualization of cluster traffic with Kiali in OpenShift Service Mesh.

Serverless

OpenShift Serverless helps developers deploy and run applications that will scale up or scale to zero on-demand. Based on the open source project Knative, OpenShift Serverless is currently in Technology Preview and is available as an Operator on every OpenShift 4 cluster.  The OpenShift Serverless Operator provides an easy way to get started and install the components necessary to deploy serverless applications or functions with OpenShift. With the Developer-focused Console perspective available in OpenShift 4.2, serverless options are enabled for common developer workflows, such as Import from Git or Deployan Image, allowing users to create serverless applications directly from the console. 

 

 

Configuring a serverless deployment in the OpenShift Console.

Other than the integration with the developer console, some key serverless updates to make development on Kubernetes easier include: kn – the Knative CLI providing an intuitive user experience, the ability to group objects necessary for applications, immutable point-in-time snapshots of code and configuration, and the ability to map a network endpoint to a specific revision or service. These features, available to try out in Technology Preview through OpenShift Serverless, helps make it easier for developers to get started with serverless architecture and have the flexibility to deploy their applications regardless of the infrastructure environment across the hybrid cloud, without lock-in concerns.

Cloud-native CI/CD with Pipelines

Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) are key practices of modern software development allowing developers to deploy more quickly and reliably. CI/CD tools provide teams the ability to get feedback through a streamlined and automated process, which is critical for agility. In OpenShift, you have a choice of using Jenkins or the new OpenShift Pipelines for CI/CD capabilities. 

We offer these two options because, while Jenkins is used by the majority of enterprises today, we are also looking to the future of cloud-native CI/CD with the open source Tekton project. OpenShift Pipelines, based on Tekton, better supports pipeline-as-code and GitOps approaches common in cloud-native solutions. In OpenShift Pipelines each step is executed in its own container, so resources are only used when the step is running. This gives developers full control over their team’s delivery pipelines, plugins and access control with no central CI/CD server to manage.

OpenShift Pipelines is currently in Developer Preview and available as an Operator on every OpenShift 4 cluster. OpenShift users can also choose to run Jenkins in OpenShift, which is available in OpenShift 3 and 4. 

Red Hat OpenShift Pipelines.

In total these updates can enable development teams to get started more quickly in Red Hat OpenShift.

Containers managed across the hybrid cloud

OpenShift is designed to deliver a cloud-like experience across the hybrid cloud with automated installation and platform updates. While the release has already been available across major public cloud providers, private clouds, virtualization platforms and bare-metal servers, 4.2 introduces general availability of OpenShift 4 on two new public clouds, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform, as well as on a private cloud, OpenStack.

Installer enhancements have been made across environments. New in this release is support for disconnected installs. Disconnected installation and cluster-wide proxy enablement with support for providing your own CA bundles help customers meet requirements for regulatory standards and internal security protocols. With disconnected installation, customers can get the latest version of OpenShift Container Platform in environments not accessible via the Internet, or with strict image testing policies.

Additionally, full stack automated installs using Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS, a smaller footprint variant of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, can help customers get started in less than an hour to be up and running in the cloud. 

OpenShift Container Platform enables customers to build, deploy and manage their container-based applications consistently across cloud and on-premises infrastructure. With simplified, automated and faster installations of OpenShift Container Platform 4.2 now generally available for AWS, Azure, OpenStack and GCP, enterprises can operate the Kubernetes platform across a hybrid cloud environment.

“At Google Cloud we are committed to providing customers with the flexibility to deploy all types of enterprise workloads on GCP. Google and Red Hat share a long-standing collaboration across Kubernetes, support for the open source community, and a mutual belief that open standards and open innovation are good for customers. We look forward to helping OpenShift customers leverage the power of Google Cloud through this partnership,” said Rayn Veerubhotla, director, partnerships at Google Cloud.

“We are excited to see the 4.2 release bringing new tooling and local development experiences to OpenShift users,” said Gabe Monroy, director of program management for the Azure Application Platform, Microsoft. “Azure offers a range of OpenShift solutions including Azure Red Hat OpenShift, a fully managed OpenShift service jointly operated by Red Hat and Microsoft.  With Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 4 now generally available on Azure, enterprises can create hybrid cloud environments that can meet their current needs and also evolve to handle future requirements.”

Migration tooling to help users upgrade from OpenShift 3 to 4

Existing OpenShift users can move to the latest release of OpenShift Container Platform more easily with the new workload migration tooling available alongside OpenShift 4.2 in the coming weeks. Previously a more manual undertaking, customers have a simpler and faster way to copy workloads from one OpenShift cluster to another. For example, a cluster admin selects an OpenShift Container Platform 3.x source cluster and a project (or namespace) within that cluster. The admin then chooses to copy or move the associated persisted volumes to the destination OpenShift Container Platform 4.x cluster. Applications continue running on the source cluster until the admin decides to shutdown the application on the source cluster.  

Covering a wide variety of enterprise use cases, the migration tool provides options to stage the migration and cutover. Persistent volumes can be handled in a couple of ways: 

  • Copying the data using a middle repository, leveraging project Velero. This migration tool can target a storage backend that is different from the original. For example, moving from Gluster to Ceph.
  • Keeping the data in the existing repository and attaching it to the new cluster – swinging the PV.
  • Using Restic, for a filesystem copy approach. 

Early access

Customers often would like access to code earlier in beta to try it out. To help expand the ways our customers can experiment with the latest OpenShift updates, starting with the previews of OpenShift 4.2, customers and partners have an opportunity to gain access to our nightly builds. Note that nightly builds are not for production usage, they are not supported, they have little documentation, and not all the features will be baked in them. We intend for them to get better and better the closer they get to a GA milestone. 

With this, customers and partners have the ability to get the earliest possible look at features as they are being developed, which can help during deployment planning and ISV level integrations. 

Note for community users of OKD

Work has begun on the OKD 4.0 release, the open source community distribution of Kubernetes that powers Red Hat OpenShift, and all are invited to give feedback on current development efforts for OKD4, Fedora CoreOS (FCOS) and Kubernetes by joining in the conversations on the OKD Working Group or check on the status of the efforts on OKD.io.

Get started

Organizations across industries and around the world use OpenShift to accelerate application development and delivery. 

“As a company transitioning to containers and Kubernetes, we wanted to work with Red Hat given their deep expertise in Kubernetes for enterprises. In adopting Red Hat OpenShift 4, we are able to focus on our business of IT cybersecurity — our developers get to focus on code, while administrators can work with a trusted platform that can be easier to manage thanks to automated updates.” — Sean Muller, enterprise architect & technology leader, LiquidIT

“We use Red Hat OpenShift as our Kubernetes solution, running a number of our critical systems in our private cloud environment. Using the automation in Red Hat OpenShift, we are able to continually deliver better functionality for our customers from our teams with short time-to-market and low risk.” — Alv Skjellet, head of IT platforms, Norsk Tipping

“With our focus on the commercial transportation industry, we have been working with Red Hat given their expertise in cloud-native technology to power our fleet management solutions for transportation and logistics companies. Red Hat OpenShift 4 is already helping us to unify our work on this trusted enterprise Kubernetes platform across our hybrid cloud environment. Each cluster can be deployed using a single command. Kubernetes Operators help to enable “one-click” upgrades and lifecycle management. Operators provide automation for our applications teams to move easily to an as-a-service model. We look forward to maximizing our use of the tools that are especially powerful for our developers so they can focus on innovations on our applications.” — Justin Newcom, vice president of Global Information Technology, Omnitracs 

With the OpenShift 4.2 release, available soon, we continue to deliver the industry’s most comprehensive enterprise Kubernetes platform with full-stack automated operations to manage hybrid cloud and multi-cloud deployments, optimized for developer productivity and frictionless innovation. Learn more:

Footnote:

The use of the word “partnership” does not mean a legal partnership or any other form of legal relationship between Red Hat, Inc. and any other entity.

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