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Cloudflare releases serverless development tools and database integrations

Cloudflare announced today new tools and integrations to build applications on its serverless computing platform, Cloudflare Workers.

The company also unveiled a partnership with database tools maker Prisma that enables developers to connect Cloudflare Workers to databases like MySQL, Prisma, and Postgres, as well as NoSQL databases like MongoDB, FaunaDB, and any database that connects over HTTP, such as DynamoDB, Firebase, and AWS Aurora.

“The promise of serverless computing is its simplicity,” said Matthew Prince, cofounder, and CEO of Cloudflare. “That’s why these new tools and partnerships are grounded in our belief that any developer in the world should be able to connect their data to build any type of application on Cloudflare, period.”

Making serverless computing accessible

While many organizations use serverless computing solutions, these have often required users to spend a significant amount of time configuring and managing infrastructure and databases, a challenge that Cloudflare is hoping to address by enabling users to connect directly to databases, and quickly migrate data.

According to Reports and Data, the serverless computing market is anticipated to reach $25.49 billion by 2026. Since Cloudflare’s IPO in 2019, Cloudflare Workers helped launch more than 2 million applications, the company said.

While Cloudflare is competing against major players like Amazon’s AWS Lambda and Microsoft’s Azure Functions, the company’s emphasis on increasing simplicity for end-users and offering direct integrations with popular databases will play a key role in differentiating it from other providers.

Durable objects

Cloudflare said it is also making Durable Objects, its solution to provide low-latency and reliable storage for Cloudflare Workers, generally available. Durable Objects enables users to automatically create and delete objects so that they don’t need to waste time managing infrastructure.

As John Graham-Cumming, chief technology officer at Cloudflare, explained, the managed state is the hardest part of distributed compute — you have to think about the states your data could end up in, how to synchronize it, scale, and make it fast to access.

If a developer wants to write a stateful application, typically they employ several services to provision, manage, and scale: databases, caches, servers, and more. With Durable Objects, developers get all of those in a serverless API, with scaling and strongly consistent data access built-in, Graham-Cumming said.

One of the features included with Durable Objects that’s particularly notable is the ability to create a named instance of a Worker that runs on Cloudflare’s network. After creating this named instance or Durable Object, other workers can send messages to it and store data within it, laying out the foundation to build scalable stateless applications.

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