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Application Containers Gain Traction Among IT Pros

By Nathan Eddy (Send Email)
Posted January 29, 2016


More than three out of four IT decision makers are interested in running stateful applications such as databases within containers, according to a survey of 200 IT decision makers, which was conducted by Robin Systems.

The survey also indicated 81 percent of respondents expect their companies to increase their investment in container-based technology.

"Containers are a lightweight form of operating system based on virtualization that allows application level isolation without the overhead of hypervisors. Containers deliver nearly bare metal performance, which is critical for performance-sensitive applications like databases," Sushil Kumar, chief marketing officer for Robin, told eWEEK. "Since all containers running on a machine share OS and other software, containerization helps eliminate or reduce VM sprawl as well."

He explained containers enable application portability by allowing an application and all its dependencies--OS libraries, underlying software--to be packaged and moved across servers and clouds.

Workload consolidation and lower performance overhead, as compared to traditional virtualization, are the key motivation for 78.5 percent of IT decision makers who expressed interest in running databases within containers.

Performance was cited by more than half (53 percent) of respondents as the most important consideration for running databases within containers.

"As someone who has spent his lifetime working with databases, I can vouch for how transformative a container-based platform can be for these applications, but we wanted to hear what data professionals and IT managers thought about it," Kumar said.

He noted this is where the survey results may hold a surprise or two, pointing out that three out of four respondents said  they are actively looking to run data applications within containers.

"The drivers cited for this trend were not surprising," he said. "Respondents pointed to the ability to consolidate workload--without losing performance or predictability--and to reduce performance ahead, as compared to hypervisors-based virtualization, as leading factors prompting greater adoption of containers."

As the survey reveals, the trend toward containerization is nearly unstoppable, with over 80 percent respondents planning to increase their container investment.

"And this is for good reason," Kumar said. "Containerization technology is transforming the application development process by enabling application portability across platforms and clouds."

He noted the containerization benefits for data applications are even more far reaching, as the container can act as the foundation for an agile and consolidated data platform.

"In 2016 and beyond, we should expect rapid maturing of the container landscape," he said. "More container-based solutions will come to market with newer use cases and possibilities."

 

Originally published on eWeek.
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