Essential Guide

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The complete rundown on Docker data storage and containers

Container technologies, especially Docker containers, continue to gain traction in the storage market. This guide explores how containers stack up against virtual machines as well as who is using them.

Introduction

Products like Docker data storage containers are causing quite a buzz thanks to their efficiency, better use of resources and lower storage requirements. With containers rapidly making their way into the data storage market, could the technology unseat virtual machines as the next big thing? Experts seem to think so.

Originally an open source project, Docker is often credited with reviving interest in storage containers. Applications in containers used to have to share the same operating system (OS) to share an operating kernel -- but Docker's approach makes applications more portable. Docker storage containers running on one machine share the same OS and have a layered structure rather than virtual hard disks. Containers can run independent processes in a shared user space and are capable of running on different environments.

Mainly used in application testing and development environments, Docker could soon be used in primary storage. Sometimes considered a lightweight version of virtual machines (VMs), storage containers offer a number of advantages for primary storage. Docker data storage containers seem to be following the same trajectory as server virtualization software, gradually adding features to become more suited to primary storage. That may not happen soon, but with the thriving interest around Docker containers, vendors are certainly getting prepared.

Although it started as a Linux-only platform, Docker is gaining vendor support across the market. Microsoft has included it in Windows Server 2016, and VMware and EMC have collaborated with a container management startup to provide support for Docker data storage containers. While data protection and other issues have so far prevented widespread adoption, Docker containers are on their way to becoming a significant presence in the storage market.

This essential guide dives into the benefits of using containers, the significance of Docker containers in the market and which vendors are using container technology.

1Container overview-

How containers and storage work together

Storage container technology may not be deployed in primary storage yet, but it may not be too far off. A hot topic in 2015, containers can help overcome issues with virtualization, but also come with their own challenges.

Feature

What containers can do for storage

Containers have notable storage benefits, but managing them can be a difficult task. Products to handle persistent data stored in containers are now emerging. Continue Reading

Tip

Containers taking the place of virtual machines

The technology used by VMs and containers is similar, but containers offer unique advantages in terms of efficiency and lower resource requirements. Continue Reading

Feature

Overcome the limitations of virtualization

Virtual systems suffer from the need to create copies of the operating system. Containers skirt this issue by running on top of an OS. Continue Reading

Answer

How containers and virtualization technology differ

Containers, while similar to storage virtualization, allow applications greater access to needed hardware capabilities. Continue Reading

News

Docker may soon become a storage mainstay

Docker started out largely as a tool for development/test environments, but is increasingly being used to handle primary storage. Continue Reading

2Working with containers-

Optimizing storage for a containerized environment

Not sure where to begin with container technology? This section contains tips for working with storage containers, Docker storage and backups.

Opinion

Hype around containers ignores some serious concerns

From questions over security to a lack of management interfaces, there are some reservations with containers that need to be dealt with before hailing them as the "savior of IT." Continue Reading

Answer

Issues with backing up data in Docker

One potential drawback to consider when using Docker data storage containers is backing up data. The layered structure of containers makes them more complicated than traditional VMs when performing a backup. Continue Reading

Tip

Technology to help protect your Docker data

Data protection methods for containers haven't quite reached the same level as those for virtual machines, but there are several technologies that can help secure data in Docker. Continue Reading

Tip

Scaling your container

Container scalability still eludes many organizations. Luckily, there are a variety of tools and approaches that can help you scale the containers in your environment. Continue Reading

Feature

How to face the challenges of Docker data storage containers

Data protection, portability and persistence are three of the major challenges associated with Docker containers. This "look under the hood" lets storage managers better comprehend containers and how to deal with them. Continue Reading

3Who supports it?-

Storage companies add container support

Docker storage containers are quickly gaining vendor support. The following articles outline current vendor support for containers and how individual vendors approach the technology.

News

Rancher Labs supports Docker with hyper-converged platform

The startup runs virtual machines inside Docker storage containers, which allows customers to use the same tools to manage both. Continue Reading

News

Coho Data enables customers to run containers in primary storage

Coho Data's 2015 software upgrade lets customers schedule, launch and execute Docker containers on its hybrid and all-flash storage nodes. Continue Reading

Answer

Docker gains Windows support

For the first time, native support for Microsoft Windows containers will be offered within Windows Server. But will interoperability issues appear? Continue Reading

News

Dell integrates Docker storage

Docker storage is an open source driver included on Dell's SC Series storage arrays. It is designed to let customers move Docker data storage containers between Linux hosts. Continue Reading

News

VMware adds Docker support with Cluster HQ

Partnering with startup Cluster HQ, VMware introduced a storage drive that supports the creation of persistent Docker container storage. Continue Reading

News

Docker plug-ins for EMC's XtremIO and ScaleIO

EMC drivers allow Docker containers to share storage with the XtremIO and ScaleIO storage systems. However, that doesn't mean the technology is ready for enterprise adoption just yet. Continue Reading

News

Zadara container support for Amazon Web Services

Users can access Docker data storage in AWS through Zadara's Virtual Private Storage Array service. Continue Reading

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