Red Hat + Microsoft: To Boldly Go Where No Partnership Has Gone Before – Part 2

CLH-MonitorGlow-HorizontalThis post is brought to you by Command Line Heroes, an original podcast from Red Hat.

Part 1 of this post presented an overview of the Red Hat and Microsoft partnership. Part 2 focuses on partnership updates.

The next generation begins…

(Captain’s log. Stardate 94942.42.)

SQL Server on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

Prime directive: “Allow SQL Server to run on Red Hat Enterprise Linux as a bare-metal operating system and to operate on Microsoft Azure, Hyper-V, and Red Hat OpenShift.”

Based on the prior successes of the partnership, in March 2016 Red Hat and Microsoft began exploring the feasibility of making SQL Server available on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Shortly thereafter, an initial private preview was made available (April 2016), followed by a public preview (November 2016) and the launch of the Early Adopter Program (EAP). SQL Server on Red Hat Enterprise Linux was formally added to the partnership in July 2017 and the GA version made available to the public in October 2017.

❇ Lt. Cmdr. Data’s dummary: “I am Data—Lt. Commander Data. Adding SQL Server as an OEM component to the relationship includes collaboration in marketing, support, and engineering (performance, high availability, security).”

(Captain’s log. Stardate 95445.85.)

In response to high customer interest in containers and SQL Server database technologies, a new set of engagement areas were announced in August 2017 and formally added to the Red Hat-Microsoft partnership in November 2017 to include:

  1. Windows Server containers in Red Hat OpenShift
  2. Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated in Azure
  3. SQL Server in containers
  4. Red Hat OpenShift on Azure Stack
  5. Red Hat Enterprise Linux on Azure Stack
  6. Azure Service Broker and Red Hat OpenShift

Although Azure Service Broker and Red Hat OpenShift was not part of the August announcements, it was formally added to the partnership in November 2017. Accordingly, we can now adjust the house model to reflect the current state of the partnership to match the views of Captain Jean Luc Picard and Lt. Cmdr La Forge:media-20180117 (1)Astute readers (and all Red Hatter’s) know that at Red Hat we love to use house analogies! Let’s take a closer look into what each of these new engagement areas provides.

1. Windows Server Containers in Red Hat OpenShift

Prime directive: Allow native support in Red Hat OpenShift for Windows Server containers and provide support to mutual end-users.

Enterprises recognize the benefits of using containerized applications to run their mission-critical workloads, but most IT organizations are not standardized on a single infrastructure stack. These heterogeneous environments often carry both Windows and Linux platforms, siloing applications and making it difficult for a business to modernize and scale their operations.

Red Hat OpenShift will be the first container application platform built from the open source Kubernetes project to support both Linux and Windows container workloads in a single platform across the multiple environments of the hybrid cloud, breaking down silos and making it easier for enterprises to pursue their cloud-native strategy..

The initial (non-native) capability was demonstrated at Red Hat Summit in May 2017. Full native support in Red Hat OpenShift (as Technology Preview) is planned for late Spring/Summer 2018.”

Cmdr. Riker’s summary: The more difficult the task, the sweeter the victory. Enabling native support for Windows Server containers in Red Hat OpenShift provides customers with a single, standard platform for deploying and managing Windows and Linux container workloads across hybrid cloud environments. Additional hybrid-cloud value is realized when Red Hat OpenShift deployments include Azure, Azure Stack and bare metal.

2. Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated in Azure

Prime Directive: Allow Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated on Microsoft Azure.

Cloud-native applications and the container platforms that power them are critical components to digital transformation, but managing the infrastructure for these technologies can be complex and time-consuming for already-stretched IT teams. Red Hat and Microsoft are addressing this by offering Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated on Azure.

Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated is a container platform delivered as a cloud service, managed by Red Hat. By making Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated available on Azure, customers have access to Microsoft’s enterprise-grade cloud platform across over 40 regions globally—more than any other public cloud provider.

Microsoft and Red Hat engineers are working closely to optimize Red Hat OpenShift while running on Azure, helping to deliver standardized enterprise performance and matching integrated support.

Lt. Cmdr. Worf’s summary: “The true test of a warrior is not without—it is within. Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated on Microsoft Azure brings parity to today’s three largest cloud service providers and provides customers with a standard container platform across them.”

3. SQL Server in containers

Prime directive: “Allow SQL Server to be certified, made available in the Red Hat Container Catalog and available for use with Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise Linux.”

As customers continue taking advantage of containers to increase agility in a cloud-native world, Red Hat and Microsoft are committed to helping them harness open innovation. This commitment was first realized with the release of .NET Core 1.0 for Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift in June 2016, and repeated in August 2017 when Red Hat announced the availability of .NET Core 2.0.

In October 2017, SQL Server 2017 for Red Hat Enterprise Linux was released. Based on the success of .NET Core for Red Hat container platforms, Red Hat and Microsoft plan to bring the power and scale of SQL Server for Linux to Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift.

As with all Red Hat and Microsoft partnership engagement areas, SQL Server for Linux on Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform will be jointly supported by both Microsoft and Red Hat.

Lt. Cmdr. La Forge’s summary: “You know, I’ve always thought technology could solve almost any problem. It enhances the quality of our lives, and lets us travel across the galaxy. In the end, it’s about providing our mutual customers with the same level of confidence in SQL Server for Linux containers through the Red Hat Container Catalog and certification program.”

4. Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Red Hat OpenShift on Azure Stack

Prime directive: Allow Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise Linux to run on Azure Stack.

Azure Stack is Microsoft’s extension of Azure that brings cloud computing to on-premise  environments, by running on certified hardware from Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Cisco. It helps enterprises quickly and easily stand up a cloud experience in their datacenter.

Red Hat and Microsoft will update Azure Stack, Red Hat OpenShift, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux as required to let Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise Linux run on Azure Stack.

The companies also plan to collaborate on delivering enterprise performance standards and integrated support for Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise workloads running in Microsoft Azure Stack.

Counsellor Troi’s summary: “Respect is earned, not bestowed. Letting Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise Linux run on Microsoft Azure Stack provides
customers with additional hybrid-cloud capabilities, flexibility and deployment options for container-based workloads.

5. Azure Service Broker and Red Hat OpenShift

Prime directive: Allow Red Hat OpenShift users to connect to Microsoft Azure Cloud services via Azure Service Broker.

Azure Service Broker is a set of technologies developed by Microsoft and made available under an open source license. Azure Service Broker defines a specification (Open Service Broker API) for the delivery of services to applications running with cloud-native platforms and enables third-party applications to connect to Microsoft Azure cloud services.

Red Hat and Microsoft will collaborate to allow Red Hat OpenShift to discover and provision Azure cloud services. Microsoft and Red Hat will also meet enterprise performance and support objectives.

As noted previously, although Azure Service Broker and Red Hat OpenShift was not part of the August container announcements, it was formally added to the partnership in November 2017.

Q’s summary: “Picard, is that all this meant to you? Just another spatial anomaly, just another day at the office? Allowing the discovery and provisioning of Azure services  extends the capabilities of Red Hat OpenShift applications by light years!”

Epilogue

The ability to deploy, run, and scale workloads on Red Hat products across a hybrid mix of cloud and on-premise environments is tantamount to opening new realms of possibilities to developers, system administrators, and DevOps engineers alike. The scope and depth of the Red Hat-Microsoft partnership has truly gone from what would have once been deemed unimaginable to a thriving, ever-evolving set of engagement areas that go far beyond a classic ISV relationship.

Mark Heslin has been the technical partner/program manager for the Red Hat-Microsoft partnership since July 2015. He joined Red Hat in 2010 as a member of the systems engineering team with a primary focus on Red Hat-Microsoft interoperability and integration projects. Mark has numerous published reference architectures and technology briefs still in use today. Outside of work Mark leads hiking trips, and he’s a self-admitted guitar nerd and sci-fi fan.

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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