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 MAS Manage 8.5.0 support for ARM architecture

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Ivan Lagunov's profile image
Ivan Lagunov posted 11-22-2022 11:07
Hello,

With the today's release of MAS 8.9.0, Manage 8.5.0 has been switched to use OpenJDK 11, more specifically:

openjdk version "11.0.16.1" 2022-08-12
IBM Semeru Runtime Open Edition 11.0.16.1 (build 11.0.16.1+1)
Eclipse OpenJ9 VM 11.0.16.1 (build openj9-0.33.1, JRE 11 Linux amd64-64-Bit Compressed References 20220818_500 (JIT enabled, AOT enabled)

This should bring support for ARM architecture as IBM Semeru Runtime added support for ARM already in September (as stated here - https://github.com/ibmruntimes/Semeru-Runtimes/issues/33). It'd be great to have ARM support as it'd make it possible to run Manage docker container on MacBooks with M1 chips. This is highly anticipated by our development team.

However, I've found out that the new Manage docker image is based on cp.icr.io/cp/manage/ubi-wlp-manage:2.4.3 which only supports linux/amd64 architecture and no ARM. Is there anything blocking from adding ARM support now? Is there perhaps another base Liberty image with ARM support?

Could anyone from IBM shed some light on this and the plans to introduce ARM support? @Steven Shull​ I believe you might clarify this, thanks in advance.

Best regards,
Ivan Lagunov
ZNAPZ
Steven Shull's profile image
Maximo Certified Steven Shull Best Answer
Sorry for the delay. I was out for extended vacation around the Thanksgiving holiday.

I have not heard anything about plans to support ARM. You should open an idea on https://ibm-ai-apps.ideas.ibm.com/ideas/ if this is important to you but please be aware that we're dependent on a variety of other software supporting it as well. For example, OpenShift just started supporting that architecture (https://cloud.redhat.com/blog/introducing-openshift-on-arm) but it doesn't look like it has feature parity yet. I'm not sure if there is anything we depend on that OpenShift doesn't support yet on ARM. We need OpenShift, Cloud Pack for Data, DB2 Warehouse, Mongo, SLS, BAS/UDS, etc. to support the stack before we can even consider supporting it ourselves.

While you wouldn't have these components yourself in your Mac running a Manage container image scenario, we wouldn't build a special image for that purpose. Customers can pull the WAR files and have it running in a custom image today so they could handle this specific scenario on ARM without us doing anything. Our focus on the local images for developing has the user pulling the image from OpenShift which would be a problem if they have different architectures. 

Power will likely be the first alternative architecture we would support. While there have been discussions and some work done on it, I'm not sure when we plan to support Power yet. Our initial release for Power was also going to be limited to just MAS Core & Manage while we worked to prepare all the other applications for it. It's not a simple process to add support for a new architecture. We have to modify our build processes to build different images for that architecture. It also requires us having sufficient hardware & personnel devoted to building, testing, and supporting each of the platforms. We need the demand to justify the investment in something like this.