What are Composite Applications in Serverless360?

|  Posted: March 15, 2019  |  Categories: Serverless360

One of the things I really like about Serverless360 is the ability to create a Composite Application which is a container for resources which I want to bring together because they form a business solution. These resources may physically be in different subscriptions, different resource groups or even belong to different companies but in the Composite Application, I have brought them together because they work together to solve a problem.

Do you have hundreds of entities in your Azure Subscription? Would you like to manage them in the context of business or in groups? Want to provide restricted access to your team members to focus only on resources they are supposed to?

Serverless360 introduces Composite Applications to group your entities in the context of business like OrdersShipping, OrdersCancelled or different groups like Staging or Production.

Serverless360-Composit-Application

In the Integration Playbook, I recently talked about this pattern of Composite Integration Application as its also something I see a lot of people in the community using as a way to draw and define the Serverless solutions they are building and it nicely represents the joining of services together to provide the solution.

From a management perspective Serverless360 originally set up a view of the composite applications which worked OK but I spent some time with Serverless360 team hoping to help flush out this feature as I believe it would be important to help customers visualize their Serverless estate.  When I first started using Serverless360 to manage the Azure back end for NothingButUnicorns.com my Serverless estate looked like the below picture.

Serverless360-View

While this looks ok, remember that I am a very small business and I am starting to have the following issues with the minimized card view and maximized full composite app view:

  • The composite apps very quickly take up a lot of screen space
  • I can’t easily see which apps are similar and would be managed by the same teams in support
  • I just see a load of apps and there is no real structure to them

Serverless360 team developed the tree view and now that it is released you can see below how I am able to give some structure to my company and create nodes for things like IT, Customer Service, Online Store, etc.  Within each of these areas, I can position composite applications that relate to them.

Tree-View-Composite-Application

This makes my overall Serverless estate much easier to understand and relate to my organization. If I click on one of the nodes, then I get a view of the status of all the composite apps under that node like in the below picture.

Composite-Applications-Status

If you are a company who only has a small number of Serverless applications then you will be able to use Serverless360 just as you always did and you may not need the tree view but I think we are starting to see a big uptake in the number of companies developing serverless applications and this tree view should scale from anyone with 5 or more apps right up to the biggest enterprises who will possibly have hundreds or more apps.

In addition to that, Once the entities are grouped based on your preference, Serverless360 provides endless capabilities for serverless management and monitoring on your resources. The dashboard represents the set of entities grouped together and their statuses based on the monitoring configuration.

Dashboard-Monitor

It also helps in the democratization of IT support team. It is not ideal to provide access to L1/L2 support team members direct access to Azure Portal or access credentials like Namespace connection Strings or Service Principals to manage the IT infrastructure on Azure. Also, Azure portal doesn’t provide operational capabilities from a business perspective.

Serverless360 provides all operational capabilities and restricted access through Composite Applications that represents your Line of Business Application.

Furthermore, it also has better Governance and Auditing capabilities, where you can provide access to your team members only to the business applications they are supposed to manage.

Governance-And-Auditing

I think this feature is really going to help improve the management experience.

Author: Michael Stephenson

Mike is a very highly experienced leader when it comes to delivering real-world cloud solutions having worked on >40 projects with many multiple large customers. He has worked with Microsoft Azure technologies since they first came out and has lead the technical side of the cloud adoption at a number of companies and has helped those companies become recognized by Microsoft as the benchmark for cloud adoption in their industry sectors.