Understanding Containerized Applications & Microservices


The traditional way of hosting software in the cloud is to create virtual machines in servers on cloud platforms like Microsoft Azure or Amazon Web Services. Each virtual machine runs either Windows or Linux/Open-Source operating systems and runs an organization’s applications. If an organization creates an application dependent on specific programs, each virtual machine running that app needs to have the required software installed.

As a result of this cloud architecture, programs tested and built with version 2.0 of a required software may not function in the virtual machine with version 3.0 of the required software installed. Likewise, the operating environment of the building phase may differ from the operating system of the testing phase in the cloud. No matter how different the security policies, storage, and network differ, your applications need to run.

A solution to this dilemma is using containerized applications. Containers not only include an organization’s main application, but also all dependencies, libraries, other binaries, and configuration files. Containerized application platforms take away the need to worry about differences in operating systems and overall infrastructure between various virtual machines.

Containers vs Virtual Machines

With existing virtualization methods, there are virtual machines that can be purchased and shared that not only include the business application being run, but also the operating system (Windows or Linux) that the app needs to run on. For example, physical Azure servers running 20 virtual machines need to have 20 separate copies of Windows 10 installed. On the other hand, services like Docker can run all 20 separate instances of your business application with only one installed copy of Windows 10.

Because they have fewer copies of Windows or Linux installed, containerized applications are more reliable, light weight, and efficient than virtual machines. Using containers allows your applications to run faster, and thereby deliver your products and services to your client faster.

Major Advantages

Because containers require less operating system installations, the fixed server space purchased by an organization can host a greater amount of containerized applications than virtualized apps. Containerized applications start up instantly, whereas virtualized apps take up significantly more time, because users need to wait for a greater number of operating systems to boot up. Once the application is no longer needed, containerized applications can quickly disappear which allows more server resources to open and be used for other practices.

Finally, containerized applications are modular and adopt a microservices approach. Instead of running an entire application with a payment platform, database, accounting, and social media services on each virtual machine, a business adopting a microservices approach uses containers to break up their applications into each individual component which allows for easier management.

How Can I Build My Applications with Containerization?

To figure out the best way to build and manage containerized apps for your workloads, it is wise to consider leveraging an Azure consulting services partner, an AWS consulting partner, or another partner who can offer their expertise by organizing and modernizing your architecture to be compatible with Azure, AWS, or another cloud platform.

For example, by working with a cloud consulting partner like Sysgain, organizations can focus on delivering better services for their fast-growing consumer market. In addition, your migration and revised operating model is overseen and developed by a team with expertise in that specific area.

To get started with a complimentary info session and/or demo of containerized applications, visit our website and contact Sysgain here.

More Information:

What are Containers and Why do you Need Them?

Containerization Services for Legacy Apps

TechTarget – App Containerization