OpenShift Online Cloud PaaS

OpenShift is a Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering from Red Hat, Inc., and OpenShift Online is the hosted or cloud version of it. OpenShift Enterprise is the version that may be used by businesses to build private clouds.

The software used to cobble the PaaS together is Free Software, so if you have the resources, you can grab it and build your own PaaS. If you are like me, you probably don’t have the hardware resources to run your own PaaS, or don’t need to, and will be more interested in the cloud offering called OpenShift Online.

OpenShift Online is a developer-targeted service, but this article is aimed at non-developers, just to highlight the aspect of the service you can take advantage of.
OpenShift Online Cloud PaaS

Every service tends to come with its own set of jargons, and OpenShift is no exception. So if you want to start using OpenShift, here are the terms you need to understand:

1. Gear: This is a container with a set of resources that allow users to run their applications. OpenShift Online runs many gears on each virtual machine and dynamically distributes gears across them.

2. Cartridge: are the containers that house the framework or components that can be used to create an application. One or more cartridges run on each gear or the same cartridge can run on many gears for clustering or scaling. Cartridges are currently enabled for PHP, Java, Ruby, Perl, NodeJS, and Python, with embedded cartridges for MySQL, MongoDB, phpMyAdmin.

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So an OpenShift account gives you access to gears, which house cartridges. With cartridges, you can run frameworks, atop which you can deploy your applications. So the relationship flow is like this: Gear > Cartridge > Application Framework > Applications. Note that all four are contained on a virtual machine instance running on Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

OpenShift Online is a developer-targeted or developer-friendly service, but nothing stops a non-developer like me or you from using it to host any number of applications. This WordPress-powered website runs on a VPS account, but there are several non-critical but essential applications I use that could be deployed on a free service like OpenShift Online.

Currently, Gears comes in two sizes – Small and Medium. A small gear comes with 512 MB of RAM and 1 GB of disk space. The medium variety has the same amount of disk space, but comes with 1 GB of RAM. When you sign up for an OpenShift Online account, you get three small gears for free. That’s a total of 1.5 GB of RAM and 3 GB of storage. You can extend your free account to a MegaShift, a paid account, which starts at $0.5 per hour for a small gear and $0.12 per hour for a medium gear.

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Three small gears totaling 3 GB of disk space may seem pony, but for the type of applications I intend to deploy on this PaaS, one of which is Piwik, a Free Software Web Analytics software, one small gear is more than enough. The reason for wanting to deploy a non-critical but essential application like Piwik on a FreeShift account is because experience has taught me that, if possible, it is better to run certain applications off site, that is, off your Web or VPS hosting account, especially those that are easy prey or have proven to be easy prey to hackers.

Ultimately, all applications are hackable, but it is recommended that peripheral applications be run off site, so if they are hacked, the bad buys don’t get easy passage to the main application(s). So, the next OpenShift-related article from me will be on how to deploy Piwik on a FreeShift account. You may sign up for one here. Most of the information presented here was taken from the OpenShift FAQ page.

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16 Responses

  1. I have a lenovo g50-80 laptop and I want to dual boot with Windows 10, Everything is fine but at the time of partition only primary partitions is shown. so what I have to do now plzzz help

  2. FN + F2 will bring up the UEFI screen when booting. You can set “hotkey” mode off which allows F1 – F12 to work normally and the Fn key to access the extra functionality.

  3. G’day,
    I bought a Lenovo50-45 recently and had been scouring the net for information on how get USB booting. Then I came across your post. Clear and precise explanation. Thanks very much. Looks like I will be coming back for more
    Regards,
    James

  4. Hi,
    I really liked your site’s contents and advice. Thank you for all that valuable info.
    I bought a Lenovo G50-45 to my daughter. It came with Windows8 and without CD nor ethernet port.
    As my daughter got frustrated with unsolicited software upgrades/installs that have place in the precise moment you are urged to use the PC, and the eternal feeling that you don’t own your computer but someone else does; I encouraged her to try linux. As some of my office fellows told me about Deepin and its Mac’s-like look&feel, I and my daughter decided to give it a try and I installed Deepin on her PC.
    First of all I faced the “secure boot” issue you just commented about. But once that issue was solved, I’m not being able to configure the network at all. It seems that Deepin does not have the drivers for the wireless network interface that comes with this Lenovo model, or the manufacturers did something tricky to discourage the users to run some linux distros on it. Have you heard about any wireless issues with this Lenovo model when usin Deepin OS? Thank you!

    1. MY Lenovo G50-45 has an optical drive and an Ethernet port. The latter is on the left side, between the HDMI and VGA ports.

      As for problems with the Ethernet connection, I’ve not heard any issues with it. The only problem I have is with the wireless connection, which works, but tends to lose connection often. And it’s not just with Deepin, but other Linux distributions too.

      Yesterday, I reinstalled Windows 8. Today, the Ethernet port stopped working, so I’m trying to figure that out. My general opinion is the model is not a good PC.

      Btw, Deepin has a tendency to freeze, so I wouldn’t want to introduce a new user to Linux using the latest edition of Deepin.

  5. Hi, “Kamit”! I have red quite a few posts on your site and liked them a lot! The information is quite diverse on the website and right to the point in the articles. Also I learned of a few Linux distros that I haven’t come accross before, and think I should test them, eg. BackBox. I am really impressed with your style of writing, grammar and punctuation – very few native English speakers indeed can put commas in the right place.
    I am planning on upgrading my laptop and this time I want to go for an AMD/Radeon machine and use a Linux distro as the main OS (I like Mint and Fedora). I think Lenovo B50 or G50 should be a good choice for home/office use. Last night a technician at a local shopping centre completely discouraged me of going for Lenovo/AMD/Radeon combination, saying that it’s a completely unreliable trio and recommending HP ProBook/i5/nVidia instead. What is your opinion? Have you had issues with your Lenovo G50 in the past 5 months since you bought it?

    1. Thanks for the kind words.

      Regarding the G50, I still have Windows on it, but I’ve never used it with that OS, so I can’t tell you whether it’s reliable or not when running Windows.

      With Linux, however, the network connections will drop for no reason, and has to be reconnected manually. Not sure if the fault is with Linux or the network card. Wireless works fine, though.

      From what I’ve heard/read, HP and Dell appear to offer better quality.

      Hope that helps.

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