Docker containers and Kubernetes have already changed the way that applications are packaged and developed, but that’s only a part of their total promise. The driving principle behind Replicated is that they will also change the way enterprises consume applications—by eliminating the false choice between antiquated, complex on-prem software and modern, scalable, simple-to-manage software as a service. Thanks to the write-once-deploy-anywhere nature of containers, there’s no reason that companies concerned with things like security and control shouldn’t be able to get a modern enterprise software experience behind their own firewalls.
(To be crystal clear: When we say “behind the customer’s firewall,” we mean on IaaS virtual private cloud resources, as well as inside corporate data centers.)
We’ve already helped dozens of leading SaaS companies—including HashiCorp, CircleCI, NPM, Sysdig and GitPrime—deliver just this experience to their enterprise customers, a list that includes more than one-third of the Fortune 100. Today, we’re extending this capability to an even broader set of software vendors and end-users, via the Replicated Kubernetes multi-node appliance. While it’s only a step toward our ultimate vision for modernizing the enterprise software lifecycle, the new appliance nevertheless provides an easy, predictable way to deliver Kubernetes applications to enterprise buyers.
If you’re familiar with Replicated, the Kubernetes appliance is basically a new spin on what we already provide with the native Replicated scheduler and for Docker Swarm. If you’re new to Replicated, the way our platform works is like this: SaaS or software companies already utilizing cloud-native architectures bring their YAML file (this has largely been custom YAML and Docker Compose to this point, but now can be Kubernetes manifests, as well) and continue developing their applications as normal. Replicated provides the tooling for installing both the Kubernetes runtime and the application on customers’ infrastructure, as well as for managing licenses and staging product updates.
If you’re a SaaS company selling an enterprise version, you’ll also need to deliver the types of features those customers expect from software they buy and install locally. Replicated addresses these needs with functionality for airgapped installs, admin console, snapshot and restore, automated support, LDAP integration, audit logs and more.
We’ve supported Kubernetes as a host environment for some time, but the appliance approach eliminates the need for end-customers to manage their own Kubernetes clusters at all. SaaS and software vendors write their own (or leverage their existing) Kubernetes YAML files defining how their applications are architected (i.e., which components run in which pods, and how they interact), and the Replicated platform automatically installs Kubernetes along with the application on end-customer infrastructure.
The result is that your customers can reap the rewards of Kubernetes without having to learn the technology themselves. They benefit from faster development and continuous releases on your end, as well as from the inherent resiliency and run-anywhere nature of Kubernetes for the application itself.
Although we’ve been successful so far helping SaaS and software providers modernize and simplify their installed enterprise versions, it’s clear to us that all forward-thinking software vendors will eventually adopt a cloud-native approach to building and packaging their applications. If you’re interested in seeing how Replicated might help expand your business with modern, automated enterprise software, get started with our evaluation mode here or get in touch to talk about what we’re up to next.