Containers-as-a-Service makes clouds more efficient


Containers are a form of virtualized operating system. What's in each container, though, is not the whole OS. The kernel is not copied, but shared by all the virtual machines running on a given server. So there is less OS overhead duplicated in each container.

A limitation--versus hypervisor-based virtualization--is that you can't run "guest" operating systems in a container, in the way that you could have a virtual machine running Windows under a host Linux system.

But in the cloud, Michael Daconta notes that many virtual machines run only a single application. In such cases, Containers-as-a-Service becomes an appealing form of IaaS with much more efficient use of processing power and memory. Containers also boot up more quickly than virtual machines that have to load the entire operating system.

Daconta says that the container approach is currently implemented on Linux, BSD and Solaris, with "most activity" on Linux--which will strengthen Linux's lead in the cloud, although he also predicts that Containers-as-a-Service will become available on all major OSs. Daconta argues that CaaS is even more significant than cloud interoperability as it is more foundational in nature.

For more:
- read Daconta's column

More about virtualization and cloud computing:
How cloud impacts enterprise networks
OpenStack Havana release causes blogger fisticuffs
Spotlight: VMware vulnerabilities
New certification offered for cloud technology skills

Filed Under