A cloud-native application typically runs on the following technologies:
Cloud-native applications are usually deployed as microservices. A microservices architecture breaks an application into several small services, each responsible for a single feature or workflow. These microservices run independently of each other, so they can be developed and deployed individually. If one microservice fails, it takes down that single feature without affecting the rest of the application.
Cloud-native containers are self-contained virtual environments for running microservices. Each small container includes the precise resources needed to run a single microservice. Therefore, it’s easy to create and deploy them for on-demand scaling. Like microservices, each container runs independently, so if one fails, it won’t take down the entire node.
Cloud-native containers are what’s known as immutable (or unchangeable) infrastructure, meaning they’re never updated or fixed after deployment. If there’s an issue with a container, a new version is spun up with an updated configuration and the old one is decommissioned. This practice reduces the update’s impact on the performance and availability of the cloud-native application.
Cloud-Native Benefits for Your Business
For business that develop software for internal or external use, the cloud-native approach is beneficial for a few key reasons:
- Agility: Cloud-native microservices split applications into small components that are created and deployed very quickly, supporting agile development and DevOps.
- Scalability: Cloud-native containers are easily scalable, so you can ensure that your application always has the resources needed to deliver optimal performance, even during higher demand.
- Resiliency: Cloud-native containers and microservices run in isolation, so if one fails, it won’t bring all the others down. Therefore, your software will always be accessible to end-users.
- Security: Since containers are independent and immutable infrastructures, you can limit the damage of a cyberattack by isolating or destroying compromised containers without bringing your whole application offline.
- Vendor-freedom: Cloud-native containers use standardized, open-source technology, so you can easily move them to a different provider with better pricing or features.
If you’re purchasing a cloud-native solution to run your own workloads, cloud-native benefits you in very similar ways.
The advantages of cloud-native applications for consumers include:
Containers are small, so they can be created and deployed relatively quickly to scale out the storage and computing capacity of a cloud-native application. You can add these resources to the individual microservices (i.e., features) that require them and only pay for what you need.
A cloud-native microservices application is highly resilient because one service or container can fail without taking down the rest of the application. Additionally, immutable infrastructure reduces the risk that an in-place update will crash the entire application.
Quality and Security
Cloud-native microservices are independently developed and deployed, so developers can release features and updates much faster, resulting in innovative and high-quality software. That also allows developers to quickly deploy patches to fix security vulnerabilities before hackers exploit them.
Many cloud-native applications are built using open-source standards and technology, which increases the portability of associated data. As a consumer, that means you have the ability to take your data and workloads from one cloud-native platform and transfer them to another vendor. For example, a competing solution has a lower price, improved performance in your area, or more specific features you need for your particular use case. In that case, transferring to the new service is simple.