F5 joins Docker Partner Program to Secure, Scale, and Speed up Containerized Apps

Lori MacVittie Thumbnail
Lori MacVittie
Published September 16, 2016

To say that Docker’s container technology is experiencing explosive growth and adoption is not mere hyperbole or wishful thinking on the part of its highly vocal advocates. Nary a day goes by that does not include some new use of the technology or research data showing that it is moving at break-neck speed not only into organizations consciousness but into its production environments, as well.

  • The number of containers running in production quintuples (= 5x) 9 months after initial deployment [Datadog]
  • Over 4 billion containers have been pulled so far [Docker CEO Ben Golub in his DockerCon keynote]
  • There are 460K Dockerized applications, a 3100% growth over 2 years [Docker CEO Ben Golub in his DockerCon keynote]
  • More than 93% are already using or plan to use containers for development, testing, or production, and the majority (78%) opt for Docker [O’Reilly Media]

While many customers are attracted to containers by its elimination of hypervisor and guest operating system overhead, others view the agility realized through millisecond creation and tear-down times to be the most compelling benefits of container technology. Indeed, the average container lifespan, according to a New Relic study, has decreased from 13 hours in 2015 to 9.25 hours in 2016, with increasing numbers of very short-lived containers (less than one minute). With instant, on-demand scale needed to address everything from flash mobs to attacks, reaction time becomes paramount. Containers enable applications to scale with greater responsiveness and efficiency than ever before. 

Additionally, there is increasing attention on new application architectures based on microservices and functionally-focused development, which reduces the size and scope of application logic, producing “bite sized chunks” that are faster and easier to develop, test, and deploy. But decomposing an application into so many composite components necessitates a need for smaller, faster, and more efficient methods of packaging. Containers fulfill those requirements with alacrity, and at a price point that makes it a compelling alternative to traditional virtualization technologies.

What hasn’t changed with containers is the need for security and performance. If anything, consumers of applications today, weaned on the web with broadband access, demand nearly instantaneous responses whether from web apps or APIs. And while both corporate and consumer users may not completely understand how the latest threats work, they will eat an organization for lunch should their data be stolen, exposed, or corrupted by them. The systems and services responsible for scaling containers, need to adapt not just to the environment in which they may be deployed (think cloud), but to their architectural characteristics, as well.

That’s why it’s so exciting to announce that F5 has joined the Docker partner program. The growing preference for a software-defined, microservices based data center architecture is one of the driving forces behind growing adoption of the Docker platform. By formalizing a joint partnership with Docker, F5 can more fully integrate its current and future technologies with the Docker stack to ensure fast and secure deliver of the applications and microservices being deployed in containers in both the data center and cloud environments.  

Stay tuned for upcoming announcements on how F5 will enable fast, secure and available applications in a Docker deployment. For additional details on Docker please visit here: