IBM Developer Blog

Follow the latest happenings with IBM Developer and stay in the know.

Open source tools enable cloud-native Java development


It’s no secret that Java developers are thinking about how they’re going to modernize their existing applications to adapt to the new cloud landscape. The schedule for this week’s DevNexus conference is dominated by talks on containers, microservices, Kubernetes, and other cloud-native technologies, telling us that you’re eager to understand the best way to easily, securely move to the cloud with Java.

In this blog post, we explore what you need to consider for building cloud-native Java applications and how open source technologies are your best bet for moving to microservices, containers, and the cloud.

Making cloud-native Java sustainable over time

As companies map out their plans to modernize their existing monolithic applications to cloud-native applications, they are increasingly turning to microservices and containers that are easier to maintain and easier to deploy to the cloud.

The good news? Java can run on Kubernetes or in serverless style environments in a developer friendly manner. The key is that you need to use the right tools and have a clear migration path to end up with scalable, sustainable applications that are easy to maintain over time. Our goal at IBM is to make sure that enterprise developers can make this move to cloud-native Java with a clearer path and fewer mistakes.

When moving modernizing your Java applications, you need to be able to answer the following questions:

  • Are your applications ready for containerization?
  • Does your development process have Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) to allow for rapid changes and easy deployment?
  • Are you using the right tools to make your applications cloud-ready?

Want to go further? Read our cloud-native tutorial series to understand cloud-native concepts provided by Kubernetes and Istio, and learn how to write microservices with Jakarta EE and Eclipse MicroProfile.

What enables developers to move to the cloud? Great open source tools with active community support.

Open source makes it possible

Using the right tools enables developers to write cloud-native applications or move existing applications to the cloud in a way that’s easy to scale and maintain in the future. And at IBM, we’re excited about open source projects like Quarkus, OpenJ9, MicroProfile, Jakarta EE, Eclipse Che, and more. Let’s look at a few ways these tools can help Java developers on their journey to the cloud.

Quarkus for microservices

Red Hat announced the Quarkus project at last year’s DevNexus conference and, since then, the project has gained traction as a modernized, developer-friendly way for Java developers to build microservices and serverless-style applications as part of their journey to the cloud. We’re currently working on ways to integrate Quarkus and Open Liberty or other Java frameworks with Eclipse OpenJ9 to run your virtual workloads.

Codewind for IDE development and CI/CD support

Eclipse Codewind is a web-based IDE that enables developers to build directly on the cloud or on a desktop and deploy on a CI/CD pipeline running locally or on the cloud. The idea is that all of this is tied into an agile process for building software where you can get a quick feedback for building microservices faster and maintenance quicker.

OpenLiberty and MicroProfile to extend the OpenJ9 JVM

OpenJ9 gives developers a modern Java Virtual Machine platform that offers high performance and speed, with the ability to reduce startup time to run better in a containerized, cloud environment. IBM is invested in two open projects – OpenLiberty and MicroProfile – to help developers use OpenJ9 efficiently.

All of our work related to cloud-native Java is being done in the open. We’re invested in a number of open source Java projects including MicroProfile, Jakarta EE, OpenLiberty, AdoptJDK, OpenJ9, and Quarkus. In addition to these projects, we’re investing a large amount of resources to support foundations like Apache and Eclipse to ensure that the projects operate under open governance, with a wide, diverse community contributing direction and code.

Next steps

Join us at DevNexus. Check out the list of workshops, talks, and events where our dev advocates and open source contributors will be.

If you can’t make it to the conference, check out the following resources:

Pratik Patel
Erin Schnabel