DevOps became more of a force to be reckoned with in 2016, thanks to companies doubling down on containers and tools to help developers create, test, and deploy their creations. Docker went all-in on its enterprise strategy, while other companies introduced the idea of container appliances. HPE went all-in on its DevOps strategy, and Kubernetes gained a lot of traction. Here's a look back at the best of 2016.
Docker launches lifecycle management with security features
Docker released its newest platform, Docker Datacenter. This Container as a Service (CaaS) platform is for on-premises agile application development and management, and it's comprised of three parts: Docker Universal Plane, Docker Trusted Registry, and the Docker Engine. This lifecycle management from inception to deployment provides more tools for security, orchestration, and container runtime. What it meant for developers is that it would make it easier to make the case for Docker in their organizations - and position Docker as the leading DevOps platform in enterprises.
Docker moves from test-and-dev to enterprise focus
Docker moved away from its test-and-dev origins with its new releases and positioned itself as enterprise-ready. That's good news for developers who are Docker fans that want to bring the platform into the enterprise. At the beginning of 2016, Docker already had over 75 companies paying for its Docker Enterprise product, and an additional 6,000 companies were using its paid Docker Cloud service. Docker is still gaining steam within enterprises, but the security that Docker has sought to improve in its products - evidenced by the use of Docker in multiple U.S. Department of Defense agencies - makes it more attractive and more of an enterprise-friendly product.
Diamanti introduces container appliances
Containers have been primarily virtual. But in April, Diamanti, a consistent contributor to open source container orchestration software Kubernetes, introduced an appliance-based approach. Containers are great for agile development, but enterprises have been slow to adopt them due to infrastructure concerns. Using appliances can ease the introduction and give developers the environment they need to code, test, and deploy enterprise applications.
Docker releases more security products to scan for container vulnerabilities
Docker was busy this year as it doubled down on its enterprise adoption strategy. It introduced Docker Security Scanning to scan container images for vulnerable components and notify users of the problem. The company also updated its Docker Bench for Security, furthering its three-pronged security strategy of secure platform, secure access, and secure content.
HPE goes after the DevOps market with automated testing tools
HPE's ALM Octane is geared toward making DevOps processes more efficient without sacrificing quality. Using REST APIs, it offers managed, automated testing for developers and follows the continuous integration process. For developers, this means being able to keep up with the near-daily updates most applications go through. HPE is going after app developers, and it knows that DevOps is critical for that market.
HPE partners with Docker
HPE and Docker were big players this year, and in June, the two strategically allied to offer an HPE Docker-ready server. These servers offer 24x7 Docker support and are natively bundled with the Docker Engine to create Docker containers. The alliance will extend to the Docker Datacenter product, and additional collaborations on HPE products.
A DevOps dashboard is introduced by — Capital One?
Capital One (Yes, the "What's in your wallet?" financial services company.) built an open source DevOps dashboard called Hygieia. It fills the need for a dashboard to monitor collective DevOps project health, as well as foster process improvement. Perhaps most significant of all is that the release of Hygieia shows the growing popularity of DevOps in even the most traditional industries, like banking.
The container community gets told to stop whining about Docker
Enough already about Docker Inc. - or so its competitors said, even as enterprises lapped up Docker's more enterprise-friendly and security-focused strategy. Docker Inc. has no plans to slow down to accommodate competitors who want to horn in on Docker containers, but some of its competitors are still beating the company in some of its own spheres. Take Kubernetes, which has cornered the market on Docker orchestration. Lack of standardization isn't slowing Docker, and neither is the control Docker Inc. is exerting over it.
Kubernetes as a Service gets backing from VMware
Speaking of Kubernetes, VMware introduced Kubernetes as a Service at the 2016 VMworld Europe conference. It's part of the Photon Platform, which was introduced in August 2015 as technologies to run containerized applications. VMware could be horning in on the DevOps game as well.
Microsoft Azure boosts Kubernetes support
We couldn't get away from Kubernetes in the second half of 2016 even if we tried. Microsoft Azure introduced improved support for Kubernetes container management, which illustrated the growing importance of containers.
Christine Parizo is a freelance writer specializing in business and technology who cut her teeth in B2B technology journalism in the days when a tablet was something you'd attach to a clipboard. She now puts her head in the cloud to analyze and write about technology for a variety of business and technology publications, as well as B2B tech companies themselves. When she's not geeking out on content marketing or cloud computing, Christine can be found drinking copious amounts of coffee or at her local CrossFit gym.