Microsoft Talks Up Its Containers At DockerCon - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Cloud // Platform as a Service
News
6/22/2016
12:05 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Microsoft Talks Up Its Containers At DockerCon

At the DockerCon show this week in Seattle, Microsoft took the stage to tout its ability to run containers on its Azure cloud and the company's overall support for the technology.

7 PaaS Startups To Watch
7 PaaS Startups To Watch
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Microsoft looks forward to the day when customers will run Windows containers, built with the popular Docker Engine, on the Azure public cloud and in the enterprise data center in a coordinated fashion.

Microsoft displayed that vision June 21 at DockerCon 2016, which is underway in Seattle.

Docker containers still don't run natively under the production versions of Windows Server, but they're slated to later this year when Windows Server 2016 becomes generally available. Windows Server 2016 is now in its fifth technical preview. Its preview release can run Windows Containers. It's expected to become generally available in the third quarter.

Microsoft is making Docker Datacenter, an end-to-end container management system, available on its Azure Marketplace. That's the company's online store, where open source and preconfigured applications are available to work with Windows systems. By giving Windows developers a chance to get acquainted with Docker Datacenter, they will be ready to use Docker Engine as Windows Containers become part of Microsoft's product line.

(Image: imantsu/iStockphoto)

(Image: imantsu/iStockphoto)

Microsoft has worked closely with Docker to ensure the Docker Engine will run under Windows Server 2016.

Windows Azure CTO Mark Russinovich wrote in a June 21 blog that Docker Datacenter could be used to manage Windows Containers deployed across both the Azure public cloud and an Azure Stack. The latter allows an Azure-like software environment to be deployed behind the firewall as a private cloud system.

"A hybrid cloud solution that can manage container-based applications across on-premises and cloud infrastructure is a compelling proposition," Russinovich wrote.

Microsoft is seeking to make containers, a technology that was pioneered in the Linux community, first-class citizens on Azure. The move keeps Microsoft more closely in step with the large contingent of developers who wish to use containers as a convenient packaging device for code. It also makes Azure a suitable environment for future applications being developed for containerized operations.

Containers put an application, or a slice of application functionality known as a microservice, into a standard package that can be moved around and handled by software tools in a predictable way. The code become more mobile, requiring only a host with an operating system kernel that resembles the one it left, rather than extensive reconfiguration.

In addition, Microsoft is seeking to allow the extensive Windows and .Net developer community participate in building microservice-based applications, sometimes alongside a Linux-oriented team of developers. Although each team would produce services that run under their respective operating systems, both sets of components could be containerized under Docker and handled in similar way by operations.

[Want to see how Microsoft is trying to get Docker integrated into the Windows environment? Read Microsoft, Docker Intensify Container Collaboration.]

Russinovich also showed the 4,000 DockerCon attendees Microsoft's new Operations Management Suite for managing containers inside the enterprise data center, in the Azure cloud, or with Amazon Web Services.

It can also be used to deploy containers to the VMware vCloud Air or an OpenStack cloud.

Russinovich also showed a preview of an Azure Container Service to match the container deployment services already available on AWS and Google Cloud Platform.

The Azure version will be able to deploy containers using Docker Swarm, Docker's orchestration system for building a container cluster and assigning containers to it. Although Russinovich mentioned Swarm, Azure Container Service won't necessarily be limited to it. In his blog post, he cited "a choice of open source orchestrator technologies," which might include Mesosphere Data Center Operating System and CoreOS's Tectonic, among others.

As if to demonstrate the brave new world of combined Windows and Linux technologies, Russinovich made final mention in his blog of SQL Server running as a Docker image, available now in private preview. The Microsoft relational system is running under Ubuntu Linux when it runs in a container today.

Charles Babcock is an editor-at-large for InformationWeek and author of Management Strategies for the Cloud Revolution, a McGraw-Hill book. He is the former editor-in-chief of Digital News, former software editor of Computerworld and former technology editor of Interactive ... View Full Bio

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Commentary
Study Proposes 5 Primary Traits of Innovation Leaders
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  11/8/2019
Slideshows
Top-Paying U.S. Cities for Data Scientists and Data Analysts
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  11/5/2019
Slideshows
10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2020
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  11/1/2019
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Getting Started With Emerging Technologies
Looking to help your enterprise IT team ease the stress of putting new/emerging technologies such as AI, machine learning and IoT to work for their organizations? There are a few ways to get off on the right foot. In this report we share some expert advice on how to approach some of these seemingly daunting tech challenges.
Slideshows
Flash Poll