Integration Modernization in Action

Integration Modernization in ActionRashid A.

BlockedUnblockFollowFollowingMar 20Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash81% of enterprises are participating in a multi-cloud strategy; 51% are deploying a hybrid cloud solution which combines the public & private cloud — Liftr Cloud InsightsWith the rise of multi-cloud strategy, it is becoming crucial to re-think on the hybrid cloud integration strategy as well.

With the unexpected workloads and variance types of environments, agility, scalability, and adaptability are critical characteristics that must be available on modern integration solutions.

To reach such an architecture, we can take a look into the cloud-native design pattern, as one of the benefits of modernizing monolithic applications into micro-components is the agility to lift and shift the components as needed.

Taking the same principles and applying them into the integration platform will empower organizations with the required peculiarities to adapt to the changes.

The concept is called Agile Integration Architecture (AIA).

It is an approach that relies on decentralized integration layer, and it benefits from the containerization and API technology.

There are three main pillars in AIA:Fine-grained Integration DeploymentOne of the challenges of traditional integration pattern is the coupling among the components, regardless of their relationships between each other; when a simple modification is done to the overhead-work, such as an upgrade, it might cause several issues.

Moving from a huge centralized integration hub into a more fine-grained integration layer, each of the integration services is running independently in small and managed components.

Decentralized Integration OwnershipThe cloud-native pattern impacts organization’s culture where a team can be formed by a business-focused and a project (service) requirements; for instance: a single group might be mixed of a developer, integrator, designer and consultant.

The team has full autonomy and confidence to make changes without impacting other services.

Another aspect is the increases in expertise since teams focus on what their responsibilities are; this brings a new level of productivity and innovation.

Cloud Native Integration InfrastructureA part of the transition is applying the cloud-native “cattle not pet” approach with the support of technology like Docker Containers and Kubernetes.

It takes seconds to create or dispose of containers to scale the workloads up and down.

A considerable improvement is the startup time because containers are running in a shared host which eliminates the need to reproduce the operating system files when a container starts or stops.

If you’re interested to learn more about the concept, check @KimClark articles, here.

Let’s move on to the fun part!.In the next section, I will demonstrate a few steps on how to get started with modernizing (containerized) your integration solution; also, we will test the portability of the solution into two different cloud environments: IBM Cloud Private & Google Cloud Platform.

Create a container image.

Push the image to the cloud registry.

Run the application on multi-clouds.

TechnologyIBM App Connect Developer Edition: a platform that supports the full breadth of integration needs across a modern digital enterprise.

Docker Containers: a lightweight, standalone, executable package of software that includes everything needed to run an application: code, runtime, system tools, system libraries, and settings from one computing environment to another.

Kubernetes: an open-source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications.

I have prepared a simple integration flow, which can be invoked via an HTTP POST operation.

Also, I have used the pre-built Cloud connectors to integrate with other 3rd parties systems such as SAP, Salesforce and Slack.

On this stage, we will only need to use the BAR file.

Navigate to your directory which where you saved the BAR file; then follow the next steps.

IBM App Connect Enterprise v11 — Get started1.

Create DockerfileUse the following file to create your Dockerfile for the integration solution.

You need to insert your BAR file name on line 3.


Build Container Image$ docker build -t <hostname>/<namespace>/<image-name>:<tag> .

For example:$ docker build -t cluster.


0 .

Note if you are deploying into Google Cloud, then follow this schema<hostname>/<project-id>/<image-name>:<tag>3.

Push Container Image$ docker login <cluster-registry-address>$ docker push <hostname>/<project-id>/<image-name>:<tag>For example:$ docker login cluster.

icp:8500$ docker push cluster.



Create the Deployment FileBy now you should have the Docker image ready, you can check by running the following command:$ docker images | grep myintegration-flowTo start deploying your integration solution into Kubernetes environments, we will begin by creating the deployment file which includes the solution/app definitions; i.


, the image path and environment variables.

Also, you can define the multiple instances (replicas) of the same app to make your app resilient (line 8).

Save the file in your directory, and run the following command:$ kubectl create -f deployment.

yamldeployment/myintegration-deployment created5.

Create the Service FileYour deployment should be ready to expose for external users/app to consume your integration solution.

We will use Kubernetes Service to define a logical set of pods and a policy to access the service, such as protocols and ports.

Similar to step 2, use the following .

yaml file:Save the file in your directory, and run the following command:$ kubectl create -f service.

yamlservice/myintegration-service createdDouble check the status of your app by running the following commands$ kubectl get po$ kubectl get svcIBM Cloud Private Environment & Google Cloud EnvironmentBoth environments are running my integration solution fine, and Kubernetes is taking care of incoming port traffic and mapping them to our target ports; i.


, 32060 → 7600 on IBM Cloud Private and 31318 → 7600 on Google Cloud Platform.

Let’s get the node public IP address to check our service$ kubectl get node –output=wideThen, form your url like the following:<public-ip>:<port>Here’re my outputs from the two environmentsIn a few steps, we took one integration solution, containerized it then deploy it on multi clouds environments (IBM & Google).

You can apply the same measures on any other integration apps/solutions, and still, you maintain your integration platform agile, scalable and adaptable.

The secret behind this is the integration runtime.

IBM App Connect Enterprise (ACE) is providing a lightweight integration runtime for cloud-native and container-based deployment.

Similar to ACE, all other IBM integration components are ready-made for container-based implementation to support your multi-cloud strategy through a complete platform: IBM Cloud Integration Platform.


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