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ClusterHQ Brings Docker Container Support to EMC Storage

Coinciding with the formal release of its Flockr data management software for Docker containers, ClusterHQ announced that it has integrated its software with ScaleIO and XtremIO storage systems from EMC.

While most containers are deployed on top of virtual machines that are already tightly integrated with any number of storage systems, there is a growing number of instances where Docker containers are being deployed directly on top of physical servers that need to be integrated with storage systems.

To make sure that EMC’s units can be employed in those scenarios, ClusterHQ CEO Mark Davis said, EMC and ClusterHQ have worked together to certify Flockr integration with EMC storage systems.

Davis said the primary issue that IT organizations will have to contend with when embracing containers on physical servers is the I/O performance issues that result when server utilization rates increase dramatically. Where there may have been 20 to 25 virtual machines running on a physical server, there can be as many as 100 containers in that scenario. Each of those containers represents an application workload generating I/O requests. Davis said ClusterHQ and EMC have worked together to optimize I/O performance in data center environments running containers.

“We’re a data volume manager,” said Davis. “Essentially, we’ve now built drivers for EMC storage into our software.”

While the vast majority of Docker containers are being used in application development and testing scenarios today, a recent survey of 285 IT operations professionals conducted by ClusterHQ and DevOps.com found that 38 percent of respondents said they were already using containers to one degree or another in production environments. More significantly, 71 percent said they expected to be using containers in production environments in the next 12 months.

The survey found that 92 percent of respondents were either using or investigating Docker, while 32 percent have used or investigated LXC containers, followed by 20 percent that had some experience with Rocket containers, created by a company called CoreOS.

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About the Author

Michael Vizard has been covering enterprise IT issues for more than 25 years, during which time he has been the editorial director for Ziff-Davis enterprise as well as editor-in-chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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