Containers Are Entering the Mainstream

The majority of enterprises are already using or currently evaluating using containers and microservices, according to a new survey from NGINX.

Container technologies, like the white-hot Docker platform, are quickly becoming the norm among enterprise IT environments according to a new study by the Web server and application specialists at NGINX.

In the short three years since its release, Docker has taken IT departments and the developer community by storm. The lightweight app containerization technology has also spurred interest in competing container platforms like Rocket and LXD.

In a survey of over 1,800 CIOs, CTOs, DevOps professionals and other IT experts, NGINX discovered that two-thirds of organizations are either investigating the use of containers (29 percent), using them in their development efforts (17 percent) or have already embraced them for production workloads (20 percent). Among those using containers in production, a third said they were running more than 80 percent of their workloads on containers.

For some organizations, containers have already proven their mettle and earned a place in their critical app delivery arsenals. "Perhaps more tellingly, half of those running containers are using them for mission-critical applications, meaning more organizations are putting their full trust in container technology," stated the report.

Respondents who are running containers singled out rapid deployment as the top benefit provided by the tech. Scalability followed closely behind.

Microservices -- essentially breaking down complex applications into smaller components for different development teams, a prime container use case -- are also gaining ground. NGINX discovered the 68 percent of organizations are using or investigating the use of microservices.


Nearly a third (29 percent) of those polled said they are currently using microservices in production while 15 percent said they used microservices to develop applications. Nearly a quarter (24 percent) said they were evaluating microservices.

In terms of microservices adoption, large enterprises are lagging behind small and midsized companies. Microservices are in use by 50 percent of midsized companies and 44 percent of small companies, according to the survey. Among large businesses, the figure drops to 36 percent. "[Thirty-eight percent] of large companies said they aren't using microservices at all, and 26 percent are researching them, but have not yet begun to implement them," stated the report.

Meanwhile, cloud computing has already settled comfortably into the technology mainstream. Eighty-six percent organizations are using the public cloud.

Among public cloud providers, Amazon Web Services (AWS) dominates (49 percent), followed by Google Cloud Platform (14 percent) and Microsoft Azure (8 percent). Amazon has won over large and midsized companies, with three-quarters of respondents rating AWS as the best cloud service.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Tags: Nginx, containers, Microservices

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