The Computing Fleet: Managing Microservices-based Applications on the Computing Continuum
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In this paper we propose the concept of “Computing Fleet” as an abstract entity representing groups of heterogeneous, distributed, and dynamic infrastructure elements across the Computing Continuum (covering the Edge-Fog-Cloud computing paradigms). In the process of using fleets, stakeholders obtain the virtual resources from the fleet, deploy software applications to the fleet, and control the data flow, without worrying about what devices are used in the fleet, how they are connected, and when they may join and exit the fleet. We propose a three-layer reference architecture for the Computing Fleet capturing key elements for designing and operating fleets. We discuss key aspects related to the management of microservices-based applications on the Computing Fleet and propose an approach for deployment and orchestration of microservices-based applications on fleets. Furthermore, we present a software prototype as a preliminary evaluation of the Computing Fleet concept in a concrete Cloud-Edge scenario related to remote patients monitoring.