Chapter 1. Introduction to Application Development with Thorntail

This section explains the basic concepts of application development with Red Hat runtimes. It also provides an overview about the Thorntail runtime.

1.1. Overview of Application Development with Red Hat Runtimes

Red Hat OpenShift is a container application platform, which provides a collection of cloud-native runtimes. You can use the runtimes to develop, build, and deploy Java or JavaScript applications on OpenShift.

Application development using Red Hat Runtimes for OpenShift includes:

  • A collection of runtimes, such as, Eclipse Vert.x, Thorntail, Spring Boot, and so on, designed to run on OpenShift.
  • A prescriptive approach to cloud-native development on OpenShift.

OpenShift helps you manage, secure, and automate the deployment and monitoring of your applications. You can break your business problems into smaller microservices and use OpenShift to deploy, monitor, and maintain the microservices. You can implement patterns such as circuit breaker, health check, and service discovery, in your applications.

Cloud-native development takes full advantage of cloud computing.

You can build, deploy, and manage your applications on:

OpenShift Container Platform
A private on-premise cloud by Red Hat.
Red Hat Container Development Kit (Minishift)
A local cloud that you can install and execute on your local machine. This functionality is provided by Red Hat Container Development Kit (CDK) or Minishift.
Red Hat CodeReady Studio
An integrated development environment (IDE) for developing, testing, and deploying applications.

To help you get started with application development, all the runtimes are available with example applications. These example applications are accessible from the Developer Launcher. You can use the examples as templates to create your applications.

This guide provides detailed information about the Thorntail runtime. For more information on other runtimes, see the relevant runtime documentation.

1.2. Application Development on Red Hat OpenShift using Developer Launcher

You can get started with developing cloud-native applications on OpenShift using Developer Launcher ( It is a service provided by Red Hat.

Developer Launcher is a stand-alone project generator. You can use it to build and deploy applications on OpenShift instances, such as, OpenShift Container Platform or Minishift or CDK.

1.2.1. Supported Architectures by Thorntail

Thorntail supports the following architectures:

  • x86_64 (AMD64)
  • IBM Z (s390x) in the OpenShift environment
  • IBM Power Systems (ppc64le) in the OpenShift environment

Different images are supported for different architectures. The example codes in this guide demonstrate the commands for x86_64 architecture. If you are using other architectures, specify the relevant image name in the commands.

Refer to the section Supported Java images for Thorntail for more information about the image names.

1.2.2. Introduction to example applications

Examples are working applications that demonstrate how to build cloud native applications and services. They demonstrate prescriptive architectures, design patterns, tools, and best practices that should be used when you develop your applications. The example applications can be used as templates to create your cloud-native microservices. You can update and redeploy these examples using the deployment process explained in this guide.

The examples implement Microservice patterns such as:

  • Creating REST APIs
  • Interoperating with a database
  • Implementing the health check pattern
  • Externalizing the configuration of your applications to make them more secure and easier to scale

You can use the examples applications as:

  • Working demonstration of the technology
  • Learning tool or a sandbox to understand how to develop applications for your project
  • Starting point for updating or extending your own use case

Each example application is implemented in one or more runtimes. For example, the REST API Level 0 example is available for the following runtimes:

The subsequent sections explain the example applications implemented for the Thorntail runtime.

You can download and deploy all the example applications on:

  • x86_64 architecture - The example applications in this guide demonstrate how to build and deploy example applications on x86_64 architecture.
  • s390x architecture - To deploy the example applications on OpenShift environments provisioned on IBM Z infrastructure, specify the relevant IBM Z image name in the commands.
  • ppc64le architecture - To deploy the example applications on OpenShift environments provisioned on IBM Power Systems infrastructure, specify the relevant IBM Power Systems image name in the commands.

Refer to the section Supported Java images for Thorntail for more information about the image names.

Some of the example applications also require other products, such as Red Hat Data Grid to demonstrate the workflows. In this case, you must also change the image names of these products to their relevant IBM Z and IBM Power Systems image names in the YAML file of the example applications.