[openstack-dev] [tc][appcat][murano][app-catalog] The future of the App Catalog

Michael Glasgow michael.glasgow at oracle.com
Fri Mar 10 23:14:12 UTC 2017

On 3/9/2017 6:08 AM, Thierry Carrez wrote:
> Christopher Aedo wrote:
>> On Mon, Mar 6, 2017 at 3:26 AM, Thierry Carrez <thierry at openstack.org> wrote:
>>> [...]
>>> In parallel, Docker developed a pretty successful containerized
>>> application marketplace (the Docker Hub), with hundreds of thousands of
>>> regularly-updated apps. Keeping the App Catalog around (including its
>>> thinly-wrapped Docker container Murano packages) make us look like we
>>> are unsuccessfully trying to compete with that ecosystem, while
>>> OpenStack is in fact completely complementary.
>> Without something like Murano "thinly wrapping" docker apps, how would
>> you propose current users of OpenStack clouds deploy docker apps?  Or
>> any other app for that matter?  It seems a little unfair to talk about
>> murano apps this way when no reasonable alternative exists for easily
>> deploying docker apps.  When I look back at the recent history of how
>> we've handled containers (nova-docker, magnum, kubernetes, etc) it
>> does not seem like we're making it easy for the folks who want to
>> deploy a container on their cloud...
> I just think that adding the Murano abstraction in the middle of it and
> using an AppCatalog-provided Murano-powered generic Docker container
> wrapper is introducing unnecessary options and complexity -- options
> that are strategically hurting us when we talk to those adjacent
> communities...

I don't disagree with any of your observations thus far, but I'm curious 
what people think this portends for the future of Murano with respect to 
non-containerized workloads.

Let's assume for a moment that VMs aren't going away tomorrow.  Some 
won't agree, but I'm not sure that whole debate adds a lot of value here.

In that context, Murano is interesting to me because it seems like the 
OO-like abstraction it provides is the right layer at which to link 
application components for such workloads, where you have, say, a Fruit 
class that can be extended for Apples and Oranges, and any type of 
Animal can come along and consume any type of Fruit.  While not a 
panacea, there are some clear advantages to working at this layer 
relative to trying to link everything together at the level of Heat, for 

For this strategy to work, a critical element will be driving 
standardization in those interfaces.  I had seen the App Catalog as a 
venue for driving that, not necessarily today but possibly at some point 
in the future.  It's not the *only* place to do that, and after batting 
it around with some of the guys here, I'm starting to think it's not 
even the best place to do it.  But it was a thought I had when first 
reading this thread.

It makes sense to me that for container workloads, the COE should handle 
all of this orchestration, and OpenStack should just get out of the way. 
  But in the case of VMs, Murano's abstraction seems useful and holds 
the promise of reducing overall complexity.  So if we truly believe that 
OpenStack and containers are complementary, it would be great if someone 
can articulate a vision for that relationship.

To be clear, I have no strong preference wrt the future of the App 
Catalog.  If anything, I'd lean toward retirement for all the reasons 
that have been given.  But I do wish that someone more familiar than me 
with this area could speak to the longer term vision for Murano. 
Granted it's an orthogonal concern, but clearly this decision will have 
some effects on its future.

Michael Glasgow

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