Cloud computing technologies have been with us for more than 10 years, but in the last few years cloud computing has captured significant market and mind share. Market research indicates that over a quarter of US and European enterprises use public clouds this year, with that percentage increasing to 44% by 2021. Our own survey shows that 72% of our readers use private clouds this year, but more significantly, 71% use public clouds, up from 43% just three years ago.
Along with uptake and use of hybrid (private and public) and multi-clouds (use of more than one public cloud), cloud orchestration and automation have become more critical. Public cloud providers are extending their reach into private clouds and private cloud providers are doing likewise into public clouds (Azure Stack, VMware/AWS partnership, Google/Cisco/VMware). There’s also increasing diversity in flavors of clouds consumed, from IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) and PaaS (platform-as-a-service), to container-as-a-Service (CaaS) and increasing interest in server-less technologies (sometimes called functions-as-a-service).
Enterprises and service providers alike see containers as an innovative and scalable way to package and deploy applications across multiple clouds, both private and public. Cloud orchestration solutions, along with DevOps and automation solutions need to accommodate container options. Popular orchestration platforms for private clouds, OpenStack and VMware vRealize, include support for containers. And many have chosen to incorporate or integrate with the open source Kubernetes, which has emerged as the leading container management and orchestration solution (now adopted by Docker, AWS, and Microsoft), and orchestration vendors are scrambling to further integrate with cloud-specific CaaS like AWS Fargate and Microsoft’s ACI.