It’s here, Docker Enterprise 3.0 – Build, Ship, Share, Run

It’s here, Docker Enterprise 3.0 – Build, Ship, Share, Run

DockerCon US 2019 has come and gone for another year! But despair not fellow Docker fans, Docker has left us with a meaty and fairly comprehensive list of announcements for us to chomp on, until DockerCon EU at least, if it decides to go ahead…

Now, before we start imagining a world without DockerCon EU, let us work our way through some of the notable key announcements from this year in San Francisco!

For anyone who has been living under a rock or drinking far too much open source Kool-Aid, Docker Enterprise is an end-to-end container-as-a-service (CaaS) platfor. Since its launch in 2017, it has been a one stop shop for public, private or hybrid cloud container management for both Linux and Windows.

At DockerCon 2019, Docker Inc released the next major iteration of the public beta: Docker Enterprise 3.0! Part of this release was the following three areas of note, namely Docker Desktop Enterprise, Docker Apps + CNAB and DKS. Let’s take a look at these in more detail:

Docker Desktop Enterprise

As the name suggests, Docker Desktop Enterprise (DDE) is a new developer tool that extends the Docker Enterprise Platform to developers’ desktops. Not only does this improve developer productivity, it accelerates time-to-market for new applications too.

DDE sounds a lot like “Docker for [Mac/Windows] 2.0”. And in some ways it’s a very similar tool, except for some extra enterprise features, more uniformed UI and some much needed yard rails. The addition of DDE will help stabilise adoption and allow unskilled engineers to leverage Docker in their workflow in a more meaningful way.

DDE also provides a secure way to configure, deploy and manage developer environments while enforcing safe development standards that align to corporate policies and practices. IT teams and application architects can present developers with application templates designed specifically for their team, to bootstrap and standardise the development process and provide a consistent environment all the way to production.

Docker Application + CNAB

Docker Applications is a stroke of genius from the product team at Docker. This simple application allows you to create an application for predefined components, adding more guard rails to help accelerate adoption and enable more and more people to use and enjoy Docker!

This is a new set of tooling that enables end-to-end application consistency and scalability from developers to operators. It allows users to manage complex applications as simply as individual containers, with tools to build, push, and deploy multi-container applications as self-contained objects. Tools such as:

Docker Application is based on CNAB – a joint collaboration of Docker, Microsoft, Bitnami, HashiCorp and CodeFresh. Docker Application Templates make sharing and standardisation of applications simpler and more scalable by creating templates for applications and their deployment parameters. In addition to creating and sharing, docker app easily generate Dockerfiles and the associated files for common application frameworks without expert Docker knowledge and enables development to get up to speed faster by letting developers focus on their business logic.

Docker Kubernetes Service (DKS)

This will make Kubernetes easier, more secure, and more accessible to the entire organisation.

DKS is compatible with Kubernetes YAML, Helm charts, and the Docker Compose tool for creating multi-container applications. It also provides an automated way to install and configure Kubernetes applications across hybrid and multi-cloud deployments. Other capabilities include security, access control, and lifecycle management. Docker Enterprise customers also can use Docker Swarm to orchestrate Docker containers.

It’s still a little unclear about what DKS is. Whilst it could be the answer to AWS’ EKS or Azure’s AKS, it honestly just sounds like a new and cooler name for Docker EE – as we all should know Docker EE has supported both Swarm and Kubernetes since 2017 and therefore has had a Kubernetes service Out of the Box. If this is true, it seems that Docker is trying to appeal to a wider audience through the descriptions and capabilities of its new tools.

Concluding thoughts

So, that’s it for another year! For more about the DockerCon San Francisco 2019, Docker have written a great wrap up blog, including all the key note live streams videos for you to watch at your leisure. Enjoy!

Morgan AtkinsIt’s here, Docker Enterprise 3.0 – Build, Ship, Share, Run
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Opening the Windows on Kubernetes 1.14

Opening the Windows on Kubernetes 1.14

Those of us who have been working in the DevOps industry for a while will be well versed in the Windows conundrum but for the sake of clarity here is an example of what it is and the problem that it poses. Let’s take a CTO within an enterprise organisation – someone in charge of a complex estate of business applications. This estate might include numerous Linux-based applications or in some cases hundreds of legacy windows-based applications. This CTO is already a containerisation convert and is bought into the benefits of added portability, security and agility, and like many organisations in the industry, he recognises Kubernetes as the standard for container orchestration. However, up until now, container orchestration for Windows applications has been limited – and this limitation has caused conflict between the need to run Windows containers in Productions and the largely agreed best practice approach of using Kubernetes.

To those less embedded in the DevOps world, this might sound like an implementation detail to be overcome by the ‘DevOps engineer’ (usually sat in a darken room), but it has a real impact on the business because of the time, resource and cost involved in solving it. To get the real benefits from a containerisation approach you need to have a unified strategy that works across your entire technology suite. Having to manage different approaches and different processes reduces the beneficial impact. Thankfully the coming together of Docker, Kubernetes and Microsoft has at last provided a solution to the problem with the launch of Kubernetes 1.14 (https://kubernetes.io/blog/2019/03/25/kubernetes-1-14-release-announcement/).

Of course, Docker has had a solution to the Windows Containers problem for a while, with a well-established and well-tested security model in the form of Docker Enterprise using Swarm orchestration. However, the rise of Kubernetes (it is increasingly the first choice among container users, with Datadog reporting its use increasing from 22.5 percent in October 2017 to 32.5 percent in October 2018) has meant that Docker had two choices. It could either continue to try and push users towards its own container orchestration solutions or it could take a more collaborative approach and embrace the fact that Kubernetes has become accepted as best of breed in this space. Thankfully for those at the sharp end of implementing containerisation strategies, they seem to have decided on the latter.

You really have to give kudos to Docker for this. It has understood the needs of its community and given it what it needs – a route to a single strategy across both Linux and Windows applications. It also means a big step forward in the move towards serverless environments.

The people who are going to feel the benefits of this most acutely (at least in the short term) are the applications teams. These are the folks at the coal face of implementing a containerisation strategy that is part of a wider IT transformation designed to speed up delivery and reduce complexity. They may also sit below a strategy team who all too often have selective blindness when it comes to looking at the technology stack and seem not to be able to see the Windows elements. It therefore falls to the men and women on the ground to deliver a series of benefits that have been sold in further up the chain based on a view of the application environment that is not entirely accurate.

So, if I am a head of architecture what can I take from the launch of Kubernetes 1.14?

Firstly – if you have been hesitant about moving forward with a containerisation approach because of the complexity of your applications environment, you now have a solution that will work across the entire environment. Not only does it mean a single control plane across different platforms and orchestrations, the UCP GUI (rather than script) means operation is simplified which will increase RUN team use.

Secondly, you can relax in the knowledge that finding yourself the right skillsets to get your containerisation strategy underway is going to be just that little bit easier!

Here’s how ECS Digital can help you use Docker:

There are significant benefits to containerisation, including portability, improved security and increased infrastructure efficiency. ECS Digital is a leading Docker Certified Delivery Partner and can help you use and extend the Docker Container platform.

Docker Modernising Traditional Applications

ECS Digital has the knowledge and experience to bring the benefits of containerisation to your more traditional applications. Working with Docker customers across EMEA, we undertake MTA Modernising Traditional Applications engagements, taking a traditional application into containers to realise the value of Docker in just five days with a turnkey program.

  • 1-week onsite support / 3 weeks remote
  • Deploy Docker EE to cloud or on-prem infrastructure
  • Containerise an existing application
  • End-to-end app deploy using Docker EE
  • App operations using Docker EE

Official Docker Training

As well as Docker Authorised Consulting Partners, ECS Digital is also a Docker Authorised Training Partners offering a range of official Docker training courses for all skills levels.

Enablement PodsTM 

ECS Digital’s Container Enablement PodsTM are an outcome-focused solution that deliver the capability you need, when you need it. Each Enablement PodTM starts with a Sprint Zero in order to establish a backlog of target outcomes with measurable KPIs and the resource.

Our Enablement PodTM approach has been massively successful in delivering large scale digital transformation projects in some of the UKs largest retail and commercial banks, as well as news publishers and international energy providers. Click hereto find out more about how our Enablement PodsTM work.

Here at ECS Digital we’re always happy to talk about how what we do can help benefit you and your business. If you’re interested in finding out how we can help, please do get in touch.

*Kubernetes 1.14 is available for download on GitHub.

Image credit: Photo by Joseph Barrientos on Unsplash

Morgan AtkinsOpening the Windows on Kubernetes 1.14
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Addressing the whale in the room

Addressing the whale in the room

This infographic is aptly named addressing the whale in the room due to the scepticism around ‘popular’ Docker misconceptions. Namely that is it insecure, requires the Cloud and is unable to compete with others in the orchestration space given it is open source.

As Docker Authorized Consulting Partners, ECS Digital have been using this technology to significantly add value to our customers by bringing the benefits of containerisation to more traditional applications.

Whilst we know first-hand why this technology is worth investing in, we wanted to take a closer look at who’s using the technology, the statistics behind Docker’s platform and the benefits those currently using Docker as their enterprise-ready containerisation tool are experiencing, so you can see its true value too.

Here we go.

Docker Infographic

 

Here’s how ECS Digital can help you use Docker:

ECS Digital is a leading Docker Certified Delivery Partner. There are significant benefits to containerisation, including portability, improved security and increased infrastructure efficiency.

Docker Modernising Traditional Applications

ECS Digital has the knowledge and experience to bring the benefits of containerisation to your more traditional applications. Working with Docker customers across EMEA, undertaking MTA Modernising Traditional Applications engagements, taking a traditional application into containers to realise the value of Docker in just five days with a turnkey program.

  • 1 week onsite support / 3 weeks remote
  • Deploy Docker EE to cloud or on-prem infrastructure
  • Containerize an existing application
  • End-to-end app deploy using Docker EE
  • App operations using Docker EE

Official Docker Training

As Well as Docker Authorised Consulting Partners, ECS Digitals are also Docker Authorised Training Partners, offering a range of official docker training courses for all skills levels.

Enablement PodsTM 

ECS Digital’s Container Enablement PodsTM are an outcome-focused solution that deliver the capability you need, when you need it. Each Enablement PodTM starts with a Sprint Zero in order to establish a backlog of target outcomes with measurable KPIs and the resource.

Our approach Enablement PodTM approach has been massively successful in delivering large scale digital transformation projects in some of the UKs largest retail and commercial banks, as well as News outlets and international energy providers.

Here at ECS Digital we’re always happy to talk about what we do, why and how. If you’re interested in finding out how we can help you, please do get in touch.

Morgan AtkinsAddressing the whale in the room
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An unforgettable trip to the sunshine state – DockerCon 2018

An unforgettable trip to the sunshine state – DockerCon 2018

Earlier this month, ECS Digital attended DockerCon 2018 in the sunshine state. Docker returned home to hold the largest container convention of the year, playing host to a wide range of partners and guests – ranging from Private Cloud providers to AI based testing start-ups. The colourful mix of both vendor and attendees made for an interesting and informative week in San Francisco.

ECS Digital enjoy a health partnership with Docker, providing highly skilled and experienced Professional Services engineers. When we are not directly sponsoring DockerCon, we therefore like to take the opportunity to attend and support the Docker ecosystem and meet the rich tapestry of companies and individuals it is comprised of.

During this year’s DockerCon, we met with a whole host of ecosystem vendors and attended a number of brilliant keynotes and practitioner talks on the different Hallway Tracks. Below is the top news from the event and our ‘top tools’ discoveries. We’ve also added a summary of the announcements made this year and the technologies to watch over the next year. 

Top News

Docker Desktop: 

A new application designed to streamline the creation of container-based apps with a shiny new GUI and templates for common patterns. 

Kubernetes: 

Big news from last year’s DockerCon EU was the introduction of Kubernetes into the docker EE platform! Now, Docker has announced the ability to run Kubernetes on windows host, allowing for great adoption of Docker EE and containers on a multitude of operating systems and container orchestrators. 

Docker EE Updates: 

Federated Docker EE clusters (a tech demo took place at DockerCon). This is a really exciting and potentially revolutionary integration. Docker EE are introducing the ability to operate any type of managed container platform. This means Docker EE users will be able to onboard Kubernetes PaaS offerings such as EKS, AKS, GKE, and even on perm Kubernetes. This provides a true multi-cloud management interface from a single pane of glass, adding so much more choice to the user. 

Dockers Growth: 

Docker announced some really impressive numbers this year, highlighting that the business is continuing to go from strength to strength: 

“More than a billion images pulled from Docker Hub every 2 weeks, 50 billion images pulled to date” 

 

Top Tools

Monitoring: 

Datadog – Datadog is a monitoring service for Cloud-scale applications, bringing together data from servers, databases, tools, and services to present a unified view of an entire stack. 

Instana – an APM solution for containerised microservice applications, Instana uses automation and artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver the visibility needed to effectively manage the performance of today’s dynamic applications across the DevOps lifecycle. Founded by application monitoring veterans, Instana provides true AI-powered APM to help organisations deliver high performance applications today and in the future.  

Testing & Security: 

ForAllSecure’s ‘Mayhem’ – a start-up leveraging advanced fuzzing and symbolic execution to test software for potential security vulnerabilities. 

Kong – a scalable, open source API Layer (also known as an API Gateway, or API Middleware). Kong runs in front of any RESTful API and is extended through Plugins, which provide extra functionality and services beyond the core platform. 

Cool Hack Sessions

One of the most anticipated sessions at DockerCon is Cool Hacks, a showcase of the members in the Docker community pushing the envelope on what can be achieved with Docker. In short, it’s a demo heavy session, showing trends of what innovators are building on top of the Docker platform.  

One of the most impressive Cool Hack showcased this year was Gloo –  demoed by Ldit Levine (@Idit_Levine). Gloo opens the world of serverless framework, allowing users to manage request paths for a microservice application interfacing with cloud-based services like AWS Lambda, or any other self-hosted container based serverless frameworks such as OpenFaas.  

The important feature of Gloo is it can be placed in front of a monolithic application and redirect individual calls to a separate endpoint. This allows users to slice up and replace a monolith piece by piece until the entirety is migrated –  all whilst running in Docker EE. 

DockerCon 2018 is over, but the ideas shared, and the relationships made will continue to grow. We had an amazing time and are thankful to Docker for hosting an amazing event, and for bringing together such a rich variety of people and product.

We hope to see everybody again next year when DockerCon returns to San Francisco, but if you can’t wait till then, join ECS Digital in Barcelona this December for DockerCon EU! 

 

Morgan AtkinsAn unforgettable trip to the sunshine state – DockerCon 2018
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ECS are attending FOSDEM 2018

ECS are attending FOSDEM 2018

This year ECSD are proud to be attending FOSDEM.

FOSDEM (or Free Open Source European Developer’s Meeting) is a massive free-to-attend Free Open Source event held annually at the ULB Solbosch Campus in Brussels, Belgium.

For those of you not familiar with the Open Source software concept, the fundamental principle is the practice of openly developing software in such a way that the source code is publicly available and maintained by a moderated community of developers.

Open Source software projects form the backbone of many supporting technologies of the DevOps toolchain. Interacting with Open Source projects will give a better insight into both the tools themselves and the way in which they function and behave in the background. You may already recognise some of the tools appearing including Docker, Kubernetes and AWS.

An all star line-up

The event’s sponsors include some big names including Google, RedHat, AWS, CISCO as well as many others. This year’s itinerary promises to be as fulfilling as previous conferences; with 653 speakers, 685 events and 57 tracks. Something that is guaranteed to appeal.

Particularly exciting tracks for DevOps-inclined individuals include

‘Identity and Access management’, Containers, ‘Monitoring and Cloud’ and ‘Testing and Automation’.

Alongside thousands of other Developers, we will be taking advantage of the DevRooms (and beer rooms), seeking to understand the focus and drive of the developers behind some of the tools which we use and gain insight into potential emerging industry trends.

The shift to DevOps practices

One thing we’ve witnessed over the years at FOSDEM is the shift into DevOps practices from the practices of old. There are a variety of stands and workshops enabling you to have one-to-one conversations with the developers themselves in order to gain further insight into the background behind the decisions that have led to the tool’s functionality and intended usage.

After this year’s FOSDEM conference has come to a close, we will be reporting back with our thoughts and insights into what we have seen and learnt over this weekend.

Stay tuned!

ECS DigitalECS are attending FOSDEM 2018
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3 highlights from DockerCon 2017

3 highlights from DockerCon 2017

ECS Digital exhibited and sponsored at this year’s main Docker event Dockercon 2017. You may have found our stand within the main exhibition hall right next to the Docker stand. The whole event was very well catered – especially the afterparty that had an arcade games theme!

DockerCon highlights:

This year, Docker announced several key messages related to its platform:

  1. Docker will be delivering the native integration of Kubernetes directly into the Docker ecosystem.

    Kubernetes will be the second option along with the already supported, Docker Swarm. This aims to simplify the life of a lot of users who were struggling with the choice between the two frameworks.

  2. MTA – Modernise Traditional Applications with Docker EE.

    Docker has released an improved version of the framework for the transformation of traditional applications into microservices. Tools in this framework are able to perform an heuristic analysis of a target system and replicate those into containers. However, this is a valid approach only for certain types of applications with some final touches still being required.

  3. Docker has announced a deeper partnership with IBM as a partner for MTA.

The ECS Digital stand

ECS Digital was represented by 6 of our own people at this event including our Managing Director, Andy Cureton, as well as our Head of Channels, Phil Drouet.

We were busy with visitors asking us many questions regarding what we do, where we’re based and what our history is. We presented ourselves as DevOps specialist with Docker being one of our major areas of expertise.

On screen, you could see our E2E solution within the DevOps pipeline area as well as our own internally developed model to apply MTA for macro applications.

Other interesting stands in Expo

There was plenty of interesting stuff going on throughout DockerCon. We had a good time catching up with our colleagues, trying to exchange ideas and getting to know their products and services better.

  • One of the most popular was VR box in IBM section where you could try this bleeding edge technology.
  • Probably the most visited was however main Docker stand. Busy all the time, where dozen of Docker experts discussing topics and cool ideas.
  • Nginx has published beta of their lightweight application server Unit
  • The solution for stateful containers from Portworx

Thank you to all those who came to our booth to say hi – it was great to speak to such a large variety of people. We are looking forward to the next event! 

Do get in touch if you’re interested in discussing how we can help you with Docker or if you have any questions for us. We’d love the chance to discuss how we can help you in your adoption of DevOps.

 

Marian Knotek3 highlights from DockerCon 2017
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