Docker Brings Open-Source Container Virtualization to Apple Mac OS X
The Docker 0.8 release introduces new features and a new release model as a popular new approach to virtualization ramps up.The open-source Docker virtualization container project released its 0.8 release this week, for the first time providing native support for Mac OS X users. Docker is an open-source effort that takes a different approach to application virtualization than virtualization hypervisors like VMware's ESX, Microsoft' Hyper-V or the open-source Xen or Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) projects. Instead of virtualizing an entire operating system, Docker is a container system that sits on top of an existing host operating system. The general idea is that a Docker-based approach is more efficient and potentially easier to secure. Earlier this year Docker Inc., the lead commercial sponsor behind the open-source project, announced that it had raised $15 million in new funding. Prior to this week's Docker 0.8 release, it was possible to run Docker on a heavyweight virtual machine on a Mac, but it was highly manual and not officially supported, Docker CEO Ben Golub said. "The combination of a native Docker client and a super-lightweight VM [virtual machine] gives us the best of both worlds: You can run Docker completely offline, without depending on an outside machine, and you can still run the exact same containers that will later be deployed in production to your Linux servers," Golub told eWEEK. "To be clear, this doesn't mean that you can Dockerize iOS apps. No Angry Bird in Docker yet."
Although Mac OS X support is a key new feature in Docker 0.8, the project is emphasizing that, with this release and moving forward, "features take the backseat to quality." The Docker project already has a well-developed internal continuous integration/testing/deployment system, Golub said.