Spring Boot’s executable jars are ready-made for most popular cloud PaaS (platform-as-a-service) providers. These providers tend to require that you “bring your own container”; they manage application processes (not Java applications specifically), so they need some intermediary layer that adapts your application to the cloud’s notion of a running process.
Two popular cloud providers, Heroku and Cloud Foundry, employ a “buildpack” approach.
The buildpack wraps your deployed code in whatever is needed to start your
application: it might be a JDK and a call to
java, it might be an embedded webserver,
or it might be a full-fledged application server. A buildpack is pluggable, but ideally
you should be able to get by with as few customizations to it as possible.
This reduces the footprint of functionality that is not under your control. It minimizes
divergence between deployment and production environments.
Ideally, your application, like a Spring Boot executable jar, has everything that it needs to run packaged within it.
In this section we’ll look at what it takes to get the simple application that we developed in the “Getting Started” section up and running in the Cloud.