Running Containers Doesn’t Have To Mean Running Blind

By Dan Twing on Oct 6, 2015 2:17:15 PM

The idea of containers has been around for a long time in various forms on various operating systems. It has been part of the Linux kernel since version 2.6.24 was released in 2008. However, containers did not become mainstream until a couple years ago when Docker was first released in March 2013. Docker introduced container management tools and a packaging format, which made container technologies accessible to developers without Linux kernel expertise. By doing so Docker led the way to making containers mainstream as well as one of the hottest trends in application development and deployment because it simplified the way applications are packaged. While this has big advantages, containers are still early in their lifecycle and lack operational maturity. The ease of use with which Docker images can be created leads to image sprawl, previously seen with VMs, and exacerbates the problem of managing security and compliance of these images. Container environments do not integrate well to existing developer tools, complicating team development due to a lack of staging and versioning for preproduction and production promotion. Also, containers do not integrate with existing monitoring tools, complicating management. However, new tools are being developed targeting Docker as an application delivery format and execution environment by an ever-growing Docker community. Many of the benefits are on the development side of the house, with the promise of DevOps benefits. Running in production can be a different story.

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