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MacStadium brings macOS instances orchestrated by Kubernetes to AWS

Another option for devs burned by VMware snubbing Apple platforms

Apple developers can now access macOS instances orchestrated by Kubernetes on AWS with MacStadium's Orka platform.

MacStadium is a company providing hosting and cloud services using Apple hardware, and Orka (Orchestration with Kubernetes on Apple) is its Kubernetes-based container platform for handling workloads running in such an environment.

From today, Orka is available to purchase through the AWS Marketplace running on Amazon EC2 Mac instances in addition to MacStadium, providing developers and other customers with another option for accessing the platform.

This new arrangement makes it easier for organizations to purchase and configure Orka Platform subscriptions through a MacStadium private offer via their AWS account, the company said.

"Orka Platform on AWS streamlines the iOS developers' build efforts while delivering a seamless buying and billing process," said MacStadium senior veep Tom Schnell.

Orka is not tied to any specific industry vertical, and so it can be used by any organization that needs to build and maintain iOS or macOS applications, according to MacStadium, as it is supposed simplify the orchestration of macOS instances in a cloud environment.

The platform features pre-built integrations to popular developer environments like GitHub Actions, Jenkins, GitLab, TeamCity and more, the company states.

Although it has been around for several years, Orka has taken on a new importance since VMware disclosed last year that vSphere ESXi 7.0.x would be its final release to support Mac platforms, leaving some customers to cast around for an alternative virtualization platform for macOS and Xcode development.

Earlier this month, MacStadium said it was offering a transition path from VMware to Orka that will replicate VMware images to Orka images, provide a sandbox environment for customers to test out CI/CD tools and processes, and access to a dedicated team of experts to help with the transition.

However, it warned that the average customer transition time from VMware to Orka Platform could be as much as 30 days, depending on the infrastructure size and script complexity.

Amazon's EC2 Mac instances are built using Apple hardware, with x86 instances running on Mac mini computers featuring Intel Core i7 processors, with macOS versions from Mojave to Monterey available. EC2 M1 Mac instances run on M1 Mac mini systems supporting macOS Big Sur and Monterey, with Amazon claiming these instances give up to 60 percent better price performance. ®

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