Container technologies are not a new concept; it has been around for a while. In this blog, I will take a closer look at Linux based containers like LXC and Docker, which are gaining momentum in the fast changing cloud landscape. Docker is built on open source container capabilities and encapsulates the application which runs in its own isolated process on the host operating system, a great feature for people concerned with cloud security. This has a potential for disruptive innovation in the cloud as it is very different from a traditional VM based model enabling acceleration of continuous delivery process and application isolation solutions.
Now, let’s compare this work docker which is a light weight , quick provisioing alternative without the need for a hyper visor . As the containers share the OS image, we can run lot more applications on the server , also giving ability to snap shot the OS into a common image when combined with IBM patterns technology. Either case, container technologies seem to be a good bet for applications that need speed and light wight application deployment in an isolated container.
It is important to note that, there is no guest operating system or a hyper visor in this model, and makes it a good fit for light weight applications , which needs to run on low resources , on edge nodes etc . These kind of container technologies can be applied to isolate applications that need to be provisioned in quickly like traditional sand boxing model for cyber threats and enabling portability across environments. The security and kernal integrity of Linux containers make Docker attractive in multile scenarios especially needing reduced memory foot print and fast startup. This is still an emerging technology and like any new technology, there are some gaps which are being worked as we speak, but has lot of promise to transform and evolve PaaS models like BlueMix where we can provision docker containers on bare metal servers in a hosted cloud environment and evolve the hybrid cloud eco system with interoprable docker containers. Feel free to share your experience about Docker and write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions. Do not forget to join the conversation by using hashtag #InfrastructureMatters on Twitter.