If you haven’t been been surrounded by the buzz around Linux containers this year, then you must have been trapped inside one. Technologies like Docker, Rocket and Kubernetes have been dominating tech headlines with claims of revolution, it’s been lauded as greener than electric cars, and Google proclaims that it uses the technology two billion times a week. The short story behind this potential panacea is that certain developments in the kernel have allowed for isolation and virtualisation of processes and their resource requirements. Think FreeBSD Jails, or a sort of chroot on steroids.
This development has set off an electrical storm of possibilities in the cloud hosting industry. Firstly, it means that instead of traditional virtualisation, these containers require no hypervisor – so that means hardly any slowdown due to overhead. What’s more, since they are effectively just processes running under one shared kernel, they can scale dynamically according to the resources available or needed. At ElasticHosts this means greater savings, as you will only be billed according to your actual resource usage, rather than requiring you to predict your future usage and select a certain fixed server size. ElasticHosts believes cloud should be fluid and on-demand, and containers help take us closer to the movement’s original, stated goal.
ElasticHosts is a proud early adopter of new developments in the Linux kernel. It was one of the first European cloud infrastructure companies in 2008, first to use the Linux KVM hypervisor, first to offer a free choice of server sizing and first to offer SSD at all instance sizes. Now ElasticHosts is excited to be the first to offer cloud servers powered by Linux containers. Not only does it mean improved resource efficiency for its host servers, but it vastly improves performance and cost efficiency for the end user.
You can read all about ElasticHosts’ Linux containers inside this month’s new issue, LU&D 148.
To recap, Linux containerised cloud servers are:
- Faster to run – With no hypervisor, there is almost no overhead. You’re practically running on the bare metal of ElasticHosts’ servers.
- Faster to boot – With a shared kernel, and running entirely on SSD, you can spin up a new server in around two seconds.
- Cheaper – You can be billed according to your actual resource usage (not including the shared kernel), which can often be 75% of the price of keeping unused capacity idle with traditionally virtualised VMs.
If you’re interested, head over to www.elastichosts.com/cloud-servers/free-trial/ for a Free Trial, or call ElasticHosts on +44 (0) 20 7183 8250. The team is available 24/7/365, since they offer free support via phone and email. They would be happy to hear from you and to answer any questions you might have – they’re all very techie and there’s no offsite call centre!