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Run WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty on OpenShift

December 16, 2020

We are very happy to announce the availability of initial guidance to run IBM WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty on Azure Red Hat OpenShift (ARO). This is the first release delivered through an ongoing collaboration between IBM and Microsoft around the WebSphere family of products and Azure.

Developed alongside IBM, the guidance utilizes the Open Liberty Operator and provides step-by-step instructions for running WebSphere Liberty or Open Liberty on an ARO cluster. The guidance is intended to make it as easy as possible to get started with production ready deployments utilizing best practices from both IBM and Microsoft. Evaluate the guidance for full production usage and reach out to collaborate on migration cases.

Solution Details and Roadmap

Part of the WebSphere family of products, WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty are IBM’s next generation Java platforms and are important to cloud modernization of mission critical enterprise Java workloads. Open Liberty is the production-ready, free, open-source base for WebSphere Liberty. Sharing the same core implementation, both offerings are fast, lightweight, modular, and container-friendly cloud native runtimes with robust support for industry standards such as Java EE, Jakarta EE, and MicroProfile.

ARO is a fully managed OpenShift service jointly developed, run, and supported by Microsoft and Red Hat. The combination of ARO with WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty offers a powerful and flexible platform for enterprise Java customers. The Open Liberty Operator allows you to easily and reliably deploy and manage Java applications on both WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty. The Operator supports both OpenShift as well as Kubernetes. In addition to deployment and management, the Operator also enables gathering traces and dumps.

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							Run WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty on OpenShift

The guidance uses official WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty Docker images from IBM and demonstrates using the built-in container registry for ARO. The guidance enables a wide range of production-ready deployment architectures, and you have complete flexibility to customize your deployments. After deploying your applications, you can take advantage of a range of Azure resources for additional functionality.

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							Run WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty on OpenShift

In the next few months, IBM and Microsoft will provide guidance for running WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty on Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). Next year, we will explore providing jointly developed and supported Marketplace offerings targeting WebSphere Traditional on Azure Virtual Machines, WebSphere Liberty/Open Liberty on ARO, and WebSphere Liberty/Open Liberty on AKS.

These solutions follow a Bring-Your-Own-License model. For WebSphere Liberty, they assume you have procured the appropriate licenses with IBM and are properly licensed to run offers in Azure. The solutions themselves are available free of charge, as is Open Liberty and the Open Liberty Operator (customers can purchase optional IBM support for Open Liberty). Customers are responsible for Azure resource usage.

Get started with WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty on ARO
Explore the guidance, provide feedback, and stay informed of the roadmap. You can also take advantage of hands-on help from the engineering team behind these efforts. The opportunity to collaborate on a migration scenario is completely free while solutions are under active initial development.


  • Reza Rahman

    Reza Rahman is Principal Program Manager for Java on Azure at Microsoft. He works to make sure Java developers are first class citizens at Microsoft and Microsoft is a first ... Learn more

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