We’re excited to release the 2019 Akash Product Roadmap today. We’ve been working hard to make Akash the most open, cost-effective and reliable decentralized marketplace for cloud compute and this updated roadmap outlines the best path toward that vision.
As we develop and build in the year ahead, we will focus on three key themes – simplicity, scalability and, security. We thank you for your patience and we’re super excited to walk through our roadmap today.
Let’s start with what we have coming up this month – our Mainnet launch!
Our first release coming up this month is our Mainnet launch. It’s what many of you have been waiting for and we can’t wait to put it out in the world. It will feature our spot computing marketplace and developer-friendly deployment tools. This release uses production-proven Tendermint 0.31 for BFT consensus.
If you’re eager to get started and explore, you can sign up today for our Testnet and begin right away by clicking here.
Scalability & Interoperability
Straight after our Mainnet launch, we are focusing on simplicity and scalability with interoperability. This milestone improves both on the Akash Network by providing a mechanism for tenants to limit the deployment to a specific set of providers (and data centers) with an ability to scale the number of instances (containers) for deployment within a single provider. In short, this means you’ll be able to specify and scale to your favorite providers.
We’ll also be releasing interledger support for interoperability with various ledger based systems which allows for frictionless integration with major cloud providers to increase compute supply and remove barriers for enterprise adoption. This may open the doors to new partnerships to add not just supply but functionality to the Akash Network.
Trusted Providers with Reputation
As we improve scaling, this milestone will start work on improving provider trust with the introduction of provider accreditation features which reduces spam with a staking-based reputation system.
Akash is built to be a permission-less network where any tenant (with a valid key) can consume computing services from any provider that has sufficient computing power in a peer-to-peer manner disintermediating a broker. This provides a challenge for filtering out bad actors.
With this milestone, tenants can delegate the attestation to a trusted third-party (Oracle) with an ability for tenants to selectively deploy to any such trusted providers.
This milestone provides an important feature with private containers. Akash currently supports public Docker containers – workload containers must be accessible without authentication or authorization. We believe private registries are highly preferred to public containers as the latter can leak information about the inner-workings of a system or organization which would otherwise be kept secret. Private containers will make Akash resources viable for businesses requiring privacy, growing our overall reach.
Role-based Access Control (RBAC)
Our summer of fun continues with the addition of role-based access control (RBAC). RBAC is a method of regulating access to a computer or network resources based on the roles of individual users within an enterprise. In this milestone we propose an RBAC system to drive authorization decisions, allowing admins to dynamically configure policies through the Akash API.
This is important because an RBAC system would allow tenants to create workloads that operate on deployments. For example, remote workloads could be granted rights for scaling the deployment within a certain range or cost, but not be allowed to update the workload containers or cancel the deployment completely.
x.509 Support (SSL)
Finally in the last stretch of the year, one of our main goals and focus in Q4 is security and x.509 support. Our work here will provide support for SSL capability. Akash currently does not provide a mechanism to attach x.509 certificates to workloads and defers to an external router (Cloudflare) to provide SSL capability. We propose a system where tenants can attach an x.509 key-pair safely to workloads.
Akash will be adopting an open framework such as SPIFFE, suitable to provide the identity framework suitable for most modern workloads. SPIFFE (Secure Production Identity Framework For Everyone) provides a secure identity, in the form of a specially crafted X.509 certificate, to every workload in a modern production environment. SPIFFE removes the need for application-level authentication and complex network-level ACL configuration.
Fault-tolerant Manifest Distribution
We want the Akash Network to not only be open and cost-effective but incredibly reliable. That’s why in the last half of Q4 2019 our goal is fault-tolerant manifest distribution.
Deployment manifests are currently uploaded by the tenant to each provider. When deployments are fault-tolerant (new leases may be created with new providers), this method of manifest distribution requires that tenants be online and active during the lifetime of their deployment.
An alternative, fault-tolerant approach to manifest distribution is to have providers and the tenant join a peer-to-peer file sharing network, similar to BitTorrent. This approach would allow the manifest to be accessed so long as one peer (tenant or provider) is still active.
Peer-to-peer manifest distribution can also increase the performance of the operation and open the door for private workload container distribution to many providers.
These are the milestones for 2019 as we build Akash into the most open, cost-effective and reliable decentralized marketplace for cloud compute. They lay the groundwork for even bigger releases beyond the year.
However, Akash is built with you in mind and will always be hyper developer-focused – so we want to hear from you as you build and work on top of the Akash network.
Finally, if you’d like to receive updates on our progress like this one first, join our mailing list at akash.network to get notified!