Open Source Cloud Authors: Elizabeth White, John Mertic, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, XebiaLabs Blog

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Java IoT, Linux Containers, Open Source Cloud, @CloudExpo, @BigDataExpo

@DevOpsSummit: Blog Post

Docker + Stackato: The Perfect Workload Portability Solution

Looking to ease application development and deployment and also retain the maximum flexibility in terms of deployment location?

Looking to ease application development and deployment and also retain the maximum flexibility in terms of deployment location?

If you work in technology, you'd have to have been under a rock to have not heard about Docker. In a nutshell, Docker provides a lightweight container for code that can be installed onto a Linux system, providing both an execution environment for applications and partitioning to securely segregate sets of application code from one another. While this high-level description doesn't sound that exciting, Docker addresses three key issues confronting application developers:

  • Efficient resource use: One of the problems confronting IT organizations is how to get the most benefit from computing resources; this translates as to how to raise utilization of servers to ensure that their cost and power use is actually applied to computing rather than being used to operate a server that is running, but performing no useful work. The previous solution to this issue was virtualization, which enabled a single server to support multiple virtual machines, each containing an operating system and software payload. While virtualization helps address the issue of utilization, it seems obvious that operating multiple virtual machines, each with its own operating system presents the problem that a lot of the server's resources may be tied up with running multiple operating systems rather than application code, which is where all the value resides. Said another way, the operating system is a necessary evil, but it's not where business value resides. A solution that reduces the proportion of the server's overall processing capacity devoted to running operating systems would be extremely valuable. Docker is that solution -- it requires only one operating system per server and uses containers to provide the segregated execution environment that individual virtual machines previously provided. My colleague Phil Whelan used an analogy of a server as being like a jar -- and choosing to use sand rather than marbles to most efficiently fill the jar; just so, containers are more efficient as optimizing overall server use and waste less computing capacity (i.e., leave less "wasted space in the jar") than virtualization.
  • Workload encapsulation: A container offers exactly what it sounds like -- an environment to hold something. In the case of Docker, it holds a set of executable code that runs inside the Docker container. This means that the container encapsulates the execution code, and that the container can be transferred from one location to another. This simplifies the application lifecycle, as containers can be passed from one group to another with no need for separate groups to recreate the same application into different environments via recompiling and repeated configuration.
  • Workload portability: It's a fact of life that businesses use a variety of application deployment environments -- a single company may deploy applications into an on-premise VMware vSphere environment, a virtual private cloud run by an OpenStack-based provider, and also Amazon Web Services. Each uses a different hypervisor and has a different set of operational controls, which presents a challenge to organizations that desire greater flexibility and choice for workload deployment. The previous vendor solution to this issue was OVF -- the Open Virtualization Format -- which promised to enable workload portability, but in practice ended up being a mechanism to transport proprietary virtual machine images along with operational metadata. This reduced the vision of true workload portability to vendor-constrained islands of technology homogeneity, which didn't really address end user objectives at all. By contrast, Docker containers are easily transported and run on any hypervisor environment that supports Linux -- which is all of them. Therefore, Docker is a much better solution to workload portability and addresses a key user desire. You'll hear much more about how Docker enables workload portability over the coming months and years.

Given the advantages Docker offers, it's easy to understand why it has been so avidly embraced by the vendor and user community. It addresses efficient use and provides for better workload portability.

On the other hand, Docker does not solve all application problems. In fact, its benefits expose a significant issue: if it's easier to run and distribute workloads, then efficient creation and management of application workloads is all the more important. And Docker does nothing to ease application creation and management -- it merely does a fantastic job of deploying workloads once they are created.

And application creation and management is where Stackato shines. Its Cloud Foundry-based framework accelerates application development and management by providing easy to use code deployment inside a Docker container, as well as predefined and managed application data storage (i.e., database). Moreover, Stackato makes it easy to grow and shrink the pool of Docker containers within which an application operates.

For organizations looking to ease application development and deployment and that also want to retain the maximum flexibility in terms of deployment location, combining Docker and Stackato is the perfect solution. In fact, ActiveState agrees with this so much that it integrates Docker into its Stackato product.

So if you're a company or IT organization looking to address the issue of workload portability, Docker and Stackato is a good place to start your search.

Source: ActiveState, originally published, here.

More Stories By Bernard Golden

Bernard Golden has vast experience working with CIOs to incorporate new IT technologies and meet their business goals. Prior to joining ActiveState, he was Senior Director, Cloud Computing Enterprise Solutions, for Dell Enstratius. Before joining Dell Enstratius, Bernard was CEO of HyperStratus, a Silicon Valley cloud computing consultancy that focuses on application security, system architecture and design, TCO analysis, and project implementation. He is also the Cloud Computing Advisor for CIO Magazine and was named a "Top 50 Cloud Computing Blog" by Sys-Con Media. Bernard's writings on cloud computing have been published by The New York Times and the Harvard Business Review and he is the author of Virtualization for Dummies, Amazon Web Services for Dummies and co-author of Creating the Infrastructure for Cloud Computing. Bernard has an MBA in Business and Finance from the University of California, Berkeley.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@ThingsExpo Stories
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their backend AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT - especially in the connected home and office. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Kocher, founder and managing director of Grey Heron, explained how Amazon is extending its reach to become a major force in IoT by building on its dominant cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strat...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftNet Solutions will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SoftNet Solutions specializes in Enterprise Solutions for Hadoop and Big Data. It offers customers the most open, robust, and value-conscious portfolio of solutions, services, and tools for the shortest route to success with Big Data. The unique differentiator is the ability to architect and ...
A critical component of any IoT project is what to do with all the data being generated. This data needs to be captured, processed, structured, and stored in a way to facilitate different kinds of queries. Traditional data warehouse and analytical systems are mature technologies that can be used to handle certain kinds of queries, but they are not always well suited to many problems, particularly when there is a need for real-time insights.
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
Everyone knows that truly innovative companies learn as they go along, pushing boundaries in response to market changes and demands. What's more of a mystery is how to balance innovation on a fresh platform built from scratch with the legacy tech stack, product suite and customers that continue to serve as the business' foundation. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, will discuss why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue an...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Streamlyzer will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Streamlyzer is a powerful analytics for video streaming service that enables video streaming providers to monitor and analyze QoE (Quality-of-Experience) from end-user devices in real time.
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
SYS-CON Media announced today that @WebRTCSummit Blog, the largest WebRTC resource in the world, has been launched. @WebRTCSummit Blog offers top articles, news stories, and blog posts from the world's well-known experts and guarantees better exposure for its authors than any other publication. @WebRTCSummit Blog can be bookmarked ▸ Here @WebRTCSummit conference site can be bookmarked ▸ Here
In past @ThingsExpo presentations, Joseph di Paolantonio has explored how various Internet of Things (IoT) and data management and analytics (DMA) solution spaces will come together as sensor analytics ecosystems. This year, in his session at @ThingsExpo, Joseph di Paolantonio from DataArchon, will be adding the numerous Transportation areas, from autonomous vehicles to “Uber for containers.” While IoT data in any one area of Transportation will have a huge impact in that area, combining sensor...
Almost everyone sees the potential of Internet of Things but how can businesses truly unlock that potential. The key will be in the ability to discover business insight in the midst of an ocean of Big Data generated from billions of embedded devices via Systems of Discover. Businesses will also need to ensure that they can sustain that insight by leveraging the cloud for global reach, scale and elasticity.
Cloud based infrastructure deployment is becoming more and more appealing to customers, from Fortune 500 companies to SMEs due to its pay-as-you-go model. Enterprise storage vendors are able to reach out to these customers by integrating in cloud based deployments; this needs adaptability and interoperability of the products confirming to cloud standards such as OpenStack, CloudStack, or Azure. As compared to off the shelf commodity storage, enterprise storages by its reliability, high-availabil...
The security needs of IoT environments require a strong, proven approach to maintain security, trust and privacy in their ecosystem. Assurance and protection of device identity, secure data encryption and authentication are the key security challenges organizations are trying to address when integrating IoT devices. This holds true for IoT applications in a wide range of industries, for example, healthcare, consumer devices, and manufacturing. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lancen LaChance, vic...
In the next forty months – just over three years – businesses will undergo extraordinary changes. The exponential growth of digitization and machine learning will see a step function change in how businesses create value, satisfy customers, and outperform their competition. In the next forty months companies will take the actions that will see them get to the next level of the game called Capitalism. Or they won’t – game over. The winners of today and tomorrow think differently, follow different...
The IoT industry is now at a crossroads, between the fast-paced innovation of technologies and the pending mass adoption by global enterprises. The complexity of combining rapidly evolving technologies and the need to establish practices for market acceleration pose a strong challenge to global enterprises as well as IoT vendors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Clark Smith, senior product manager for Numerex, will discuss how Numerex, as an experienced, established IoT provider, has embraced a ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in Embedded and IoT solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology, is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data Center, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Hadoop/Big Data, HPC and ...
The Internet of Things (IoT), in all its myriad manifestations, has great potential. Much of that potential comes from the evolving data management and analytic (DMA) technologies and processes that allow us to gain insight from all of the IoT data that can be generated and gathered. This potential may never be met as those data sets are tied to specific industry verticals and single markets, with no clear way to use IoT data and sensor analytics to fulfill the hype being given the IoT today.
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.