Creating, packaging and deploying a software are three stages that are critical to a release management lifecycle. Although there are a number of reliable containers enterprise developers can rely on for this purpose, one stands out from the rest for its “Build, Ship and Run” vision, ending up as one of the most popular open source technologies today – Docker.
With Docker, creating, deploying and running applications are considerably easier. This benefits developers and system administrators more, and is the main reason why it’s close to finding a place in a DevOps environment.
DevOps is something that covers the entire delivery pipeline.
According to Wikipedia:
DevOps is a culture, movement or practice that emphasizes the collaboration and communication of both software developers and other information-technology (IT) professionals while automating the process of software delivery and infrastructure changes.
Because of this, it’s obvious that it could have sets of multiple tools to fulfil its purpose. This article intends to explore how Docker fits in to a DevOps ecosystem, and how the ecosystem benefits from it.
DevOps teams can breathe easy
With the rapid growth of Docker into a reliable environment for software development, software companies, having acknowledged its potential, have started using Docker in DevOps environments more. The DevOps teams seem to be benefitting the most, as they can now efficiently configure both development and test environments thanks to Docker. This in turn results in successful release management.
Before the inception of Docker…
Back when Docker was just an idea, developers, testers and the operations team had to rely on complex tools for configuration management. The complex integrations and the issues that may arise out of it can further complicate things.
There are a lot of environments involved and they should all be aligned to make it work. That in itself takes a lot of work. But with Docker, the team just starts with a base image that stays the same in other environments from development to testing.
After the inception of Docker…
A lot happened. But let’s talk about where it fits in DevOps. Docker in DevOps is both a platform and a tool.
For developers, it’s a platform where they can run the applications.
For operations people, it’s a tool that facilitates integration with the workflow.
In the end, they will be able to work with and deploy the same code. Normally, after the developer is done with the development and testing, the operations people will be tasked with deploying it. And if in case an issue arises which didn’t during the development phase, the operations people will lose their sleep.
With Docker, there would be no friction when the ops team prepares to deploy the application after development and testing. It will be seamless.
Being open source has its perks. For Docker, it means you can have additional out-of-the-box features, and support from a big community. And unlike a virtual machine, there is no hypervisor in Docker, which is why it’s considered lightweight. This is also why launching a Docker container is very fast. Build, test, run and deploy on the go at an impressive pace.
For a DevOps ecosystem, Docker-based pipeline reduces the risks of software delivery, and at the same time cuts the cost. It ensures timely delivery, and a satisfied developers and operations staff.