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What is IBM Bluemix?

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“A platform where developers can act like kids in a sandbox—except this box is enterprise-grade.”

Now that IBM Bluemix is open to general availability, let’s take a look at some of the features and benefits of the service.

Platform as a service (PaaS) is a service model where providers deliver not only infrastructure but also middleware (databases, messaging engines and so on) and solution stacks for application build, development and deploy. Bluemix is a PaaS offering from IBM based on open standards and cloud to build, deploy, manage and run omni-channel applications like web and mobile, big data and other smart services.

There are currently 50 services available on Bluemix to help developers rapidly create and deploy innovative solutions.

(Interested? Sign up for a free trial of Bluemix)

Benefits of IBM Bluemix

Now, let’s look at some of the features of Bluemix:

• Bluemix is the new development environment built on Cloud Foundry for the cloud era to build applications rapidly and incrementally composed from services.

• Open standards allow developers to avoid vendor lock-in, leveraging the open and flexible cloud environment using a variety of tools from IBM, third party or open technologies.

• Bluemix offers more than 200 software and middleware patterns available from IBM and IBM Business Partners to help enterprise and born-on-the-cloud developers develop portable and compatible applications for hybrid cloud. Pre-built services make application assembly very easy.

• It provides an integrated experience for the developers with DevOps in the cloud and thus helps them build enterprise and mobile applications quickly and more efficiently.

• Bluemix DevOps provides:

o Facility to store and manage code by means of Git repository
o A built-in web integrated development environment (IDE)
o Easy integrations with popular development tools like Eclipse and Visual Studio
o Agile planning, tracking and team collaboration
o Services for automatic application deployment

• Bluemix DevOps allows developers to transform an idea to an application faster.

• It hides the complexities associated with hosting and managing cloud-based applications so that developers can just focus on development.

• Bluemix can automatically scale a deployed application up or down based on application usage.

(Related: Introducing the Bluemix Garage)

More Bluemix features

• A variety of popular programming languages and frameworks like Android, iOS, HTML/JavaScript, Java, Ruby and PHP are offered in Bluemix environment.

• The following diagram shows a high level architecture of Bluemix environment.

IBM BlueMix

Bluemix architecture (Image courtesy: IBM Bluemix website)

• Bluemix deploys virtual containers utilizing OpenStack to host deployed applications as indicated in the diagram.

• Users interact with the infrastructure by Bluemix user interface, a web-based user interface (UI).

• A command line tool cf is used to deploy web applications.

• Clients (mobile applications or web applications hosted externally or on Bluemix or human users using web browsers) can use REST/HTTP application programming interfaces (API) to interact with the hosted applications.

(Related: IBM announces Bluemix)

This blog post gives an overview of Bluemix and key features it offers. Bluemix ushers in a new era of application development in the cloud and expedites the process of converting an idea to an application faster using built-in services and the power of DevOps. Stay tuned for my upcoming blog posts on Bluemix. My next blog post will feature the architecture of Bluemix.

What are your thoughts on Bluemix? Share them in the comments below or connect with me on Twitter.


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