CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN CONTAINER
All the complex infrastructure an application needs, nothing to see but next-generation, energy-saving containers that will run anywhere, delivering multiple critical consumer-facing business services
Infrastructure shows its claws through different versions of operating systems, devices, connections, configurations, files, middleware, and data interfaces – all needed to run an application. Even the tiniest change can bring the mightiest application down. Enter containers! They package an application with all the relevant platform components into a standardized box that runs anywhere, in any Cloud. And through efficient scheduling, containers not only bring agility, portability, scalability, and security – they also consume less energy. Never underestimate what’s hiding backstage: containers are the uncontestable silent masters of infrastructure.
Ben Scowen Expert in Residence
- Container technology allow software products and applications to be packaged with all their needed infrastructure elements into self-contained “box” components that are easy to deploy, scale, and update.
- In a way, containers are quite like shipping containers used to package and distribute goods around the world – leveraging all the benefits of standardization, such as agility and optimization of transport options.
- Special container management and orchestration platforms ease the job of distributing containers, keeping them up to date and guaranteeing security, performance, optimized use of available resources, and scaling up and down with changing demand.
- Containers allow to use – potentially scarce – server resources much more efficiently. For example, utilization and load density of a server can be optimized by hosting more containers simultaneously on it. This contributes to decreased energy consumption.
- Furthermore, container orchestration engines efficiently move container workloads between servers, further adding to resource optimization and considerably helping to drive the zero-carbon journey.
- In a case study from NordStorm, the average utilization of their cloud servers went from 4% to 40% after the implementation of Kubernetes. This translated into NordStorm reducing their original virtual machine and volume, and consequently reducing their carbon footprint by 90%.
- A “low-carbon Kubernetes scheduler” has been incubated at both Bristol and Leeds universities, moving container workloads to the most energy-efficient servers and data center regions, demonstrating a 10–20% reduction in server energy usage.
- Tesla Energy uses containers to provide a digital twin of the energy grid, leveraging the Internet of Things and providing grid resilience.
- NASA is accelerating research with a containerized ML application running aboard the International Space Station (ISS). The Spaceborne Computer-2 edge device runs ML code on one-node Kubernetes Container clusters, driving edge analysis, and providing the results in real time to both ISS personnel and scientists on the ground.
- As part of its digital transformation to open new revenue streams, FreightWays’ DevOps team has developed a new API platform leveraging a container management solution on public cloud to facilitate customer integration and courier observability, driving increased revenues while reducing platform costs by 90%.
- Containers deliver a significant reduction in infrastructure usage, energy consumption, carbon footprint, and costs.
- Containers are key to portability, scale, security, and cloud-native innovation for the next generation of application services.
- Containers facilitate cloud transformation and migration, as well as IT modernization in general. They also enable hybrid and multi-cloud strategies.
- Companies that take a strategic, visible approach to containerization will enhance their reputation with technology-savvy customers and attract scarce top IT talent.
- Containers pave the way to intelligent automation of software delivery and a pervasive microservices architecture, delivering speed and agility to the business.
- Kubernetes-as-a-Service: Azure AKS, Azure OpenShift, Amazon ECS and EKS, Google GKE, Platform 9, Digital Ocean, Redhat OpenShift Dedicated, IBM Redhat OpenShift
- Kubernetes software distros: RedHat OpenShift, OpenSource, Mirantis, VMware Tanzu, Rancher
- Industry standards: CoreOS containers, Docker software containers