What is Docker? Important things you need to know

what-is-docker-important-things-you-need-to-know

Introduction:

So you might be thinking what is Docker? In simple language, It is a software platform that simplifies various processes of an application. And those processes include building, running, managing and distributing applications. It is an essential skill for those who are in the field of DevOps.

So you might ask now what is DevOps? DevOps is a combination of practices, tools and cultural philosophy that enables software development teams and IT teams to automate and integrate the processes between them.

Coming back to Docker, as I have mentioned earlier it simplifies all the processes related to the application. So how does it do that?, it does so by virtualizing the OS(Short for Operating System) of the computer on which it is installed and running.

Brief History of Docker:

The first name of Docker was DotCloud. In addition to that Solomon Hykes founded it in the year 2008 in Paris. Also at that time, it started as a Platform as a Service (PaaS). If you want to know in great detail about PaaS and other cloud platforms then you can read this post about cloud computing.

Solomon Hykes (image credit: docker.com)

And later on, Docker came into existence as an open-source project. And furthermore, it started gaining the attention of developers. Along with that it also gained the attention of tech giants like IBM, Microsoft and Red Hat.

Components of Docker:

I must also mention that docker is an open-source containerization platform. And let’s know about containers, so the question may arise what is a container now? In simple terms, we can say that a container is a standard unit of software in itself. It is a packaged code with dependencies such that the application runs on any computing environment quickly and reliably.

So the components of the Docker are below:

Dockerfile: Each and every Docker container initiates or starts with a Dockerfile. This is nothing but the text file that contains several important information like instruction sets to build Docker image, including Operating System, languages, file location, etc.

Docker run utility: It is a command that is responsible for launching container(s). Every container is an instance of the image. Also, it is possible to run multiple instances of the particular image concurrently.

Docker Hub: It is a repository, especially for the container images where container images can be stored, shared and managed. It is Docker’s own version of GitHub for the containers.

Docker Engine: The core of this technology is Docker Engine. It is the fundamental Client-server technology that is responsible for creating and running containers.

Docker Compose: It is a command-line tool. It uses YAML files to define and run multi-container applications of docker. For those who don’t know about YAML, let me tell you it is a human-readable data serialization language. YAML is most often used for writing configuration files.

Docker Desktop: All of the components of this are packed in a desktop application, in order to provide user-friendly options to work with this technology.

Editions of Docker:

This containerization platform is mainly classified into two different editions and they are:

  • Community Edition(CE): So now let us first talk about Community Edition. This edition is suitable for the individual developers as well as small teams. It provides limited functionality especially when compared to Enterprise Edition. So let’s now focus on Enterprise Edition.
  • Enterprise Edition(EE): The second edition is Enterprise Edition. This edition is very well suited for large teams. Not only that, this edition is also best for those who want to use this contanerization technology for production environments. Furthermore, the Enterprise Edition is then classified into three editions. And those Editions are basic edition,standard edition and advanced edition respectively.

after this let’s see the merits and demerits of this popular technology.

Advantages:

  • Cost Savings: It helps bigger organisations to generate revenues and cuts unnecessary costs. This ultimately maximizes the profit.
  • Rapid Deployment: Another benefit of this technology is the rapid deployment.It can decrease deployment time to seconds.
  • Security: It isolates the containers of application from each other that are running. And this is very important from the security point of view.

Disadvantages:

  • Missing features: There are several features that are missing and are under progress. Those features include self-inspects, copying files from host to containers and lots more.
  • Cross-Platform compatibility: If the application is designed for the Windows then it cannot run on Linux and vice-versa.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, we can say that this technology has come a long way. It is helping the developers to save money and at the same time enables people to deploy their projects fast. But as the coin has two sides this technology is also having its own pros and cons. It also lacks features and some of them I have listed above. Just like other technologies, it will also improve in the coming years.

So that’s all for this post. I hope that you have gained some information from this post. From the reader’s point of view, I have simplified this topic as much as I can. And please consider sharing this post with your friends and family. Thanks for reading the post. I will see you in the next one.

Official Website of Docker: link

Shivendra Nath

He is a passionate tech enthusiast, loves to read, write and stay updated about fascinating technologies. In his free time, he loves spending time in nature. And also sometimes he plays with his pet dog.

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