21 octobre 2015

First experiment with Tutum

I heard about Tutum from the time CloudBees was still a PaaS company and I considered them a newcomer competitor. I just read today announcement they have been acquired by Docker Inc, so wanted to know more. 

Tutum is actually not a PaaS but a deployment orchestrator and infrastructure manager you plug to your IaaS account(s). As I'm using Google Compute and this provider isn't supported, online help guided me to "bring your own node" option. This one installed an agent and immediately appeared connected on Tutum web UI.

First impression is important in IT for adoption, and Tutum do offer an awesome UX. Within few seconds I had my account setup and have found the adequate configuration informations. Need to admit they made an impressive work here.

So I have my infra setup and ready to host my app. Next step for me is to reproduce my environment, as I'm using docker-compose for local testing. 

Kubernetes or Amazon ECS both do offer the concept of running a set of containers as a single entity. Tutum has comparable concepts with Services (N replicas of a docker image) and Stacks (composition of services).  But all of them do rely on custom descriptor I would have to keep in sync and can't test locally. But according to announcement blog, Tutum also do support docker-compose so I could just use my existing setup, especially as my application does not require horizontal scaling nor replicas. 

After looking into details, Tutum stack syntax is actually the same (maybe a subset/superset ?) or docker-compose yaml syntax. 

So, I can see two significant benefits of Tutum :

1. no IaaS lock-in. I can rely on support Cloud providers or run my app on my own nodes, but still will benefit node management by Tutum. This looks to me like a real "private PaaS" i.e. my own hardware but still "as-a-service" experience.

2. same bits from dev to production. Both my docker image and stack definition are used on my development laptop and on my production service. So I can reproduce what happens on production at any time.

Need to experiment more, but looks very promising so far.

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