Red Hat Composes Ansible to Help Build Containers
Red Hat expands its DevOps platform to enable developers to more easily build their own containers.Red Hat is expanding its open-source Ansible platform with a new module called Ansible Container that enables organizations to build and deploy containers. Ansible is a DevOps automation platform technology that Red Hat acquired in October 2015. A popular option of many Docker container developers today is to use the Docker Compose tool to build containers. The new Ansible Container effort isn't necessarily competitive with Docker Compose; in fact, it can be used in a complementary way, according to Greg DeKoenigsberg, director of Ansible Community with Red Hat. Developers don't have to stop using Docker Compose; rather they can literally copy and paste or reference Docker Compose right from an Ansible playbook with Ansible Container, he said. "We designed Ansible Container to be able to embrace and extend Docker Compose so that Compose users could benefit from Ansible Container as well," DeKoenigsberg told eWEEK. "Specifically, Compose users are still going to find Ansible Container's 'shipit' functionality useful for deploying container-based applications to container orchestration platforms like OpenShift." The "shipit" functionality is an application deployment capability, while OpenShift is Red Hat's platform-as-a-service (PaaS) offering. DeKoenigsberg emphasized that Ansible Container isn't specific to just Docker containers. Just like the rest of Ansible, Red Hat is building Ansible Container to be pluggable to include other container formats and container platforms, he said.
The Ansible Container technology is now a technology preview and is its own project under the Ansible umbrella. In May, Red Hat updated the core Ansible open-source release to version 2.1, providing enhanced Microsoft support. DeKoenigsberg said that Ansible Container will have its own release schedule separate from the Ansible core.