Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Cloud Google

Can Docker Survive Google? (bloomberg.com) 98

Though Docker has 400 corporate customers -- and plans to double its sales staff -- "here's what happens to a startup when Google gets all up in its business," reads a recent headline at Bloomberg: Docker Inc. helped establish a type of software tool known as containers...and they've made the company rich. Venture capitalists have poured about $240 million into the startup, according to research firm CB Insights. Then along came Google, with its own free container system called Kubernetes. Google has successfully inserted Kubernetes into the coder toolbox. While Docker and Kubernetes serve slightly different purposes, customers who choose Google's tool can avoid paying Docker.

The startup gives away its most popular product while trying to convince developers to pay for extras, notably a program that does the same thing as Google's. "Kubernetes basically has ruled the industry, and it is the de facto standard," said Gary Chen, an analyst at IDC. "Docker has to figure out how do they differentiate themselves." It's up to [Docker CEO] Steve Singh to escape a situation that's trapped many startups battling cash-rich tech giants like Google, dangling free alternatives... "They invented this great tech, but they are not the ones profiting from it," said Gary Chen, an analyst at IDC.

Though Docker's CEO is hoping to take the company public someday, Slashdot reader oaf357 predicts a different future: To say that Docker had a very rough 2017 is an understatement. Aside from Uber, I can't think of a more utilized, hyped, and well funded Silicon Valley startup (still in operation) fumbling as bad as Docker did in 2017. People will look back on 2017 as the year Docker, a great piece of software, was completely ruined by bad business practices leading to its end in 2018.
His article criticizes things like the new Moby upstream for the Docker project, along with "Docker's late and awkward embrace of Kubernetes... It's almost as if Docker is conceding itself to being a marginal consulting firm in the container space." And he suggests that ultimately Docker could be acquired by "a large organization like Oracle or Microsoft."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Can Docker Survive Google?

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 31, 2017 @10:46AM (#55838675)

    Kubernetes (k8s) orchestrates containers, one of which is Docker. Docker Swarm is the proper comparison to k8s.

    • Kubernetes does so much more than simply "orchestrates containers" ( for example: service discovery via etcd if I am not mistaken). That is the reason why it's so COMPLEX to set-up and manage properly.

      In my company we did an analysis of different options and we settled with Mesos(handle resources)+Marathon(orchestrate based on Mesos)+Consul(service discovery)

      We are handling hundreds of containers this way and we are quite happy with the solution even though I must acknowledge that I see most of open source

      • by lucm ( 889690 )

        Kubernetes is garbage. I'm highly doubtful of people who say they're successful using it for an extended time. It's nightmarish to install and to maintain.

        We tried it and gave up after a while. We considered Mesos but ended up going with a bunch of Red Hat commercial products.

        • by tobby ( 229444 )

          We are fed up with the needless and growing complexity in the container ecosystem and are previewing a new open source project that takes a first step in trying to simplify containers, networking, orchestration and app deployments with Flockport.

          People should be able to focus on their apps and not get bogged down with infrastructure that should be as easy to use as possible, fade into the background and be robust.

          And give proper credit and recognition to all the wonderful open source Linux technology and pr

        • by sad_ ( 7868 )

          Kubernetes is garbage. ... It's nightmarish to install and to maintain. We tried it and gave up after a while. ...ended up going with a bunch of Red Hat commercial products.

          which are based kubernetes

  • by guruevi ( 827432 ) <eviNO@SPAMevcircuits.com> on Sunday December 31, 2017 @10:48AM (#55838685) Homepage

    I tried Kubernetes and Docker this year, I went with Docker. Kubernetes is quite a bit more complicated to set up and has a LOT of minor inconsistencies and issues that make it hard to work with out of the box without loads and loads of third party tools (which are really workarounds).

    Docker "just works" and although it has a few problems and is not quite as flexible as Kubernetes, they're actually working on fixing them. It for example comes without any built-in SPOF which for Kubernetes you have to figure out yourself (should I use etcd or zookeeper or something else).

    All-in-all I think if you're used to working with "beta software" that is built to scale for "the cloud" then go with Kubernetes. If you need to simply set up a container with an existing (or legacy) software stack, Docker seems to be the way to go. Hence Docker, will not go away because enterprise users need it and Kubernetes will be the stack of choice for startups.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Perhaps I live in an alternate reality:
      My reality is:

      Numerous startups funded by vast amounts of venture capital under the existing patent system that allegedly discourages innovation.

      The lowest unemployment rate, enormous corporate profits and record stock market values in many years under a tax system that allegedly hinders economic growth and profits.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Xest ( 935314 )

      Yep, judging by this flagrant hit piece Google's Kubernetes must really really be struggling to make any headway,

      Docker is the defacto industry standard for containerisation, and is backed by Amazon and Microsoft for their respective cloud services, given that they're the only two cloud services that really matter I'd say it's Kubernetes that desperately needs to worry.

      The real question this desperate hit piece begs is if Google is getting this deseprate, can Google's cloud offering survive Microsoft and Am

      • Maybe they should stick to what they're good at rather than running shitty hit pieces with the assumption that the Slashdot community is dumb enough to fall for it.

        Problem is, they're only really good at three things. Search, email, and web office. None of those things are all that profitable if people block ads, and ads are becoming more and more offensive in a variety of ways, so more and more people want to block them. They need to develop another core competency, or their days are numbered.

        • Maybe they should stick to what they're good at rather than running shitty hit pieces with the assumption that the Slashdot community is dumb enough to fall for it.

          Problem is, they're only really good at three things. Search, email, and web office. None of those things are all that profitable if people block ads, and ads are becoming more and more offensive in a variety of ways, so more and more people want to block them. They need to develop another core competency, or their days are numbered.

          Exactly. I find that even going to places like local news sites requires ad-blocks to prevent 3rd party ads from injecting javascript to redirect me to some scam sweepstakes or download page. These 3rd party ad servers are really going to destroy these websites in the long run.

      • I don't understand the whole Docker vs. Kubernetes analogy, considering that they are complimentary technologies. The whole point of Kubernetes is to add a better orchestration layer to containers, Docker containers in particular.

        Sure, Docker EE with Docker Swarm is how Docker makes a big chunk of it's revenue, but they're playing ball with Google and adopting support for Kubernetes as well. Amazon is offering support for Kube as well, but they still offer their own Docker container orchestration solutions

        • by lucm ( 889690 )

          I don't understand the whole Docker vs. Kubernetes analogy, considering that they are complimentary technologies.

          You are not crazy. Most people on this story (including the summary and editor) obviously have no clue about kubernetes.

          Kubenetes being a Docker killer is like saying npm is a nodejs killer. Idiots.

      • by godefroi ( 52421 )

        Amazon Kubernetes Service: https://aws.amazon.com/eks/ [amazon.com]
        Azure Kubernetes Service: https://azure.microsoft.com/en... [microsoft.com]

        Kubernetes doesn't compete with Docker. Kubernetes competes with Docker Swarm.

  • by ffkom ( 3519199 ) on Sunday December 31, 2017 @10:56AM (#55838717)
    ... to the really relevant container isolation features that were implemented in the Linux kernel.

    Seriously, I could not care less how many fancy user front-ends are being built in order to use these container isolation features, they aren't rocket science.

    I am more concerned about the one big still missing container isolation feature: Writes of meta-data to filesystems cannot be accounted to any control group, and so one evil software hammering a file system with meta-data operations from within a container can still bring the host (and its other guests) to its knees.
    • by guruevi ( 827432 )

      Hence with a good scheduler or cgroups the Linux kernel can put fair sharing limits on such operations (and good filesystems will optimize really bad operations away).

    • Note that this is true only for Linux. Docker supports Windows, macOS and Solaris targets, and sort-of supports some BSD flavours. On Windows and macOS, they have ported the FreeBSD hypervisor and run a Linux VM. On Solaris, they use Zones for isolation. If the FreeBSD version is ever finished, they'll use jails.
      • If the FreeBSD version is ever finished, they'll use jails.

        You mean, when this [freshports.org] is "ever finished"?

        No, does not seem like jails are in use [github.com]...

        • The version in ports is broken in many ways, based on an old version of Docker, and really shouldn't be there. Docker has now refactored a bunch of their code to provide a sandbox daemon that's responsible for managing isolation and has an abstraction layer for OS-specific services. We are working with them to provide a back end that uses jails.
      • by godefroi ( 52421 )

        Windows now has native container features. The docker situation there has gotten quite confused; "Docker for Windows" creates a Hyper-V virtual machine and runs Linux containers on it, or it can be switched to "Windows containers" mode where it runs Windows containers directly on the host machine, like it would Linux containers on a Linux host.

        It's going to get even more confused, too, because Windows is gaining the ability to run Linux containers "natively".

    • by godefroi ( 52421 )

      Kubernetes is not at all a front-end to Linux's isolation features. Kubernetes doesn't include any container engine. Most people use Docker's container engine with Kubernetes.

      Kubernetes is a system for scheduling containers across a set of worker nodes, and includes features that make that easier, like service discovery and load balancing.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Uh... what? Docker didn't "invent" anything. They took existing Linux kernel facilities written by others and cobbled them together into a poor imitation of a concept that has been around for multiple decades.

    But I guess that's the modern tech industry: if you can put enough chrome on your reinvented wheel and get a critical mass of unthinking circlejerkers to adopt it, billions of VC money can be yours!

    • by Junta ( 36770 )

      I will give them credit for focusing on integrating device mapper to provide snapshotting and for 'dockerhub' to have a centralized strategy for container sharing.

      However, despite those being good ideas, they aren't *difficult* ideas, so it's very hard for them to milk those good ideas for a lot of money.

    • Note that Docker isn't claiming that, rather an analyst at IDC, who clearly favours Kubernetes with statements like "they [Google] are the de facto industry standard", when the numbers - quoted by others in previous comments - clearly show they aren't by a long chalk.

      But that's just part of being a hit piece: back up the assertion that company X is dead in the water by falsely claiming that said company was a progenitor. People then take that to mean the company itself claims that in order to foment dissent

  • Khaki pants (Score:4, Informative)

    by jfdavis668 ( 1414919 ) on Sunday December 31, 2017 @11:13AM (#55838793)
    When I saw Docker in the title I thought this was about khaki pants.
  • My bet is that... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by l0n3s0m3phr34k ( 2613107 ) on Sunday December 31, 2017 @11:25AM (#55838839)
    Once Google knocks out Docker, in a year or two they will then announce the purchase of all the Docker IP. Then, in another year or so, they will announce the "end of life" for the project, just they've with many other products.
  • Only a matter of time before they folded. After all, open containers are prohibited in most States... [wikipedia.org]
  • by Junta ( 36770 ) on Sunday December 31, 2017 @12:23PM (#55839111)

    Saying a container speciliast company is viable is sort of like saying a specialist in fileutils (rm/cp/ls/ln) could be a company. The truth is containers are a solid technology because they are relatively straightforward.

    Docker started by wanting to provide some alternative usage scenario to the stuff that LXC was providing. The hardest part of the work was the kernel namespaces, cgroups, and device mapper pieces. Docker had the admittedly good idea of focusing on more disposable application images rather than faking virtual machines. They found success because they were open and could be ubiquitous. If they had tried to be closed, an alternative would have sprung up in a matter of months (you could teach 3 college students about the C code to manipulate namespaces and have them craft a rudimentary docker alternative in a semester).

    Then came the challenge of finding a path to profitability. Effectively docker was a really good uber-chroot, and that's not exactly sufficiently sophisticated to make a business out of. So they thought "multi-container management will be it!" and make swarm their commercial strategy.

    The problem is, when all is said and done even that isn't exactly hard to craft, so Google came along and provided that essentially in their 'spare time'. If they hadn't bothered, Mesos would have fit the bill.

    The state of container technology is such that it is actually underwhelming to use, and I mean that as a compliment. It doesn't feel like some big ordeal that warrants consulting and such, at least no more so than dealing with whatever software runs on top of that layer, which is inevitably much more complex than the effort of launching the containers. It's sort of like a mechanic specializing in only changing your oil filter, but only after you've bought all the supplies, lifted your car, and drained the oil yourself.

  • Google sells data. Docker, inc sells software support service. They are not competitors.
  • I mean, they're pretty nice pants.

    • Dave Barry says the company picked the name “Dockers” because no one would buy pants under the label “Clothes For The Bigger-Butted Man”.

I am a computer. I am dumber than any human and smarter than any administrator.

Working...