Payara Cloud Experiment Lab Report
Before the Payara Cloud Closed Beta testing began we tried an experiment to see if Payara Cloud is as easy to use as we say it is by having a member of the marketing team (me!) test the product. I’ve been a copywriter/content writer specializing in technology topics for over 18 years, so while I can’t claim to be a stranger to the tech industry, my knowledge is more focused around the benefits of using certain types of technology rather than the inner details of how it works. The idea of our little "science experiment" was if I could successfully deploy an application without any previous knowledge, then surely more experienced tech teams would find it even easier to use.
I believe I will follow the steps of the Payara Cloud User Guide, the product prompts and user interface, to successfully deploy an application to the cloud with no previous application server or Kubernetes knowledge, training, or experience. I will be able to create a namespace, deploy the application to the cloud, view metrics of the running application, and make revisions to the deployed application.
- Subscription and user account to Payara Cloud (Beta) software
- Payara Cloud User Guide
- Jakarta EE application
- Microsoft Teams for screen sharing
- Rudy De Busscher, Payara’s Technical Pre-Sales and Developer Advocate (to make notes of any User Guide updates or product improvements required… and make sure I didn’t break anything we wouldn’t be able to repair!)
- Open Payara Cloud.
- Register my user account with the subscription (provided to me).
- Download binary application files provided by Rudy that I will deploy using Payara Cloud.
- Open Payara Cloud User Guide (to figure out what I need to do!)
- Create a namespace with the project name and development stage.
- Upload WAR file.
- Decide whether to click “Deploy Immediately” using default values, or set my own configuration.
- Click upload.
- View running application.
- Revise the application (upload a newer version of the application binary).
- Find and view log files.
- Find and view monitoring.
I knew from reading the Payara Cloud User Guide that the applications in Payara Cloud are grouped into namespaces, so I knew I would need a namespace, but it was not immediately clear to me after logging in if my account already had a namespace created or I would need to create one. This observation led to updating the User Guide to indicate that if you have not yet set up your namespace(s) you would need to do so as the first step.
Once my namespace was created it was obvious where to upload the application. I simply clicked Upload Application, and chose the file Rudy provided me for testing purposes. I had to decide whether to choose Deploy Immediately or not, so I clicked on the ? icon in Payara Cloud to get more information about this checkbox. The User Guide also provided more context for me on that aspect of the upload process.
After my application was running on the cloud (about three minutes into the experiment), I wanted to try revising the application as if I had a new version of the application to run. I knew I would need to check the application screen in Payara Cloud to make changes to that application, and I was presented with the option to upload a new revision or change configuration, so I chose “upload a new revision”, which simply gave me a new upload screen to select my file from.
Being someone who doesn’t deploy applications, I didn’t immediately realize after uploading the new file it wouldn’t automatically use that new file. There was another step to “deploy changes”, which meant to make the new file I uploaded the Live application. Although this lack of awareness is probably more because I didn’t know what I was doing than an issue with the product, some changes to the UI and the User Guide may result from this observation to make it more clear to users that after uploading a newer version of the file or making configuration changes, you still need to deploy them.
It was very easy to find and view the log files for the application and also the application monitoring metrics.
Conclusion: Payara Cloud is So Easy Even the Marketing Team Could Use It
Our marketing of the upcoming Payara Cloud product indicates that Payara Cloud is the next generation of cloud-native application server offering an easier way to run your Jakarta EE apps on the Cloud. It’s an all-in-one solution that basically eliminates the need for an application server while making it possible to deploy and manage Jakarta EE applications without the complexity of building and maintaining infrastructure. There is no need to learn or understand Kubernetes, set up containers, or rewrite traditional or cloud-native applications for a new framework. Payara Cloud users should be able to “click deploy and run on the cloud” – and what better way to test these product claims than to have a non-developer from the marketing team give it a try?!
While I observed some areas in the User Guide that needed more detail, and a few areas of the UI that could be updated for consistency purposes and to improve the user experience, the overall results of our experiment were positive. I was able to upload the Jakarta EE application using Payara Cloud, run the app on the cloud, view the log files and monitoring information, and then make changes to the application by replacing it with a newer version. The development team is reviewing the notes from this experiment along with the feedback from our closed beta testing round to incorporate anything that will improve the product for our future users, and Rudy and I have made updates to the User Guide to ensure even novice users will have the information they need to get their Jakarta EE application running on the cloud.
What's Next for Payara Cloud?
Payara Cloud will be available for open beta testing in the very near future - so others can give the product a trial run and see for themselves how much faster it is to deploy an application to the cloud using it. You can learn more about Payara Cloud, watch a demo video, and register your interest to stay up-to-date with product advancements on this page.