Cloud Data Manager

'Project Astra' To Deliver True App and Data Portability in Kubernetes

A new software-defined platform addresses a common problem facing organizations that are adopting Kubernetes: a lack of reliable data and app services.

NetApp, a provider of hybrid cloud data management and services solutions, this week unveiled Project Astra, a preview of a software-defined platform for delivering robust storage, easy-to-consume data services, and true application and data portability to Kubernetes developers and operations managers.

The project, which NetApp is currently developing with the Kubernetes community, addresses a common problem among organizations adopting the popular container orchestration platform: a lack of reliable data and app services.

"The popularity of Kubernetes orchestration has out-paced vendor ability to deliver data management capabilities that have become core to how companies thrive in the cloud," said Eric Han, vice president of product management for NetApp's Cloud Data Services business unit, in a blog post.

The goal of the project, Han said, is to improve data visibility of cloud-native apps by automating discovery of applications and application data, cataloging data and backups, and reporting on data usage. Project Astra will provide IT teams and site reliability engineers with a way to store, govern, protect and replicate the data for both stateless and stateful cloud-native applications with enterprise-class cloud storage and data services.

"The promise of stateful applications in Kubernetes is the ability of an application, its data, and the data services associated with it to be moved across multiple public and private clouds," Han added. "It means being able to develop and deploy applications anywhere and being able to change these applications over time. It's an environment that brings together IT operations and application development so teams can more rapidly innovate and deploy to production."

Han, who was the first product manager for Kubernetes at Google back in 2014, said Project Astra will build on NetApp's experience enabling customers to manage petabytes of container data with NetApp Trident and NetApp Kubernetes Services, and add a specific focus on the developers and operations managers who are innovating with containers today.

"Project Astra represents the next major step in the evolution of storage and data services for Kubernetes," said Anthony Lye, senior vice president and general manager of NetApp's Cloud Data Services business unit, in a statement. "We are making a decisive and long-term commitment to addressing the data challenges of Kubernetes, together with the communities and platforms that use it. Project Astra will provide a software-defined architecture and set of tools that can plug into any Kubernetes distribution and management environment."

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of Converge360.com sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].


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