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Docker Captains interview series continues with Lorenzo Fontana

“I would prefer it if Docker would be consolidating existing features”

Hartmut Schlosser
Docker
© Shutterstock / Julia Waller

Docker is revolutionizing IT — you’re probably hearing this phrase quite often. Still, these questions linger: If we were to look beyond the hype, what’s so disruptive about Docker technology? What are the differences between Docker and a virtual machine? What is hype and where does the real added value lie? We talked with Lorenzo Fontana about all this and more.

Docker manages to insert itself into all our conversations — why? Because it is extremely helpful and everyone loves it. There’s a lot going on in the Docker world (for example, the Docker platform and Moby Project are now integrating support for Kubernetes) but this is not why we’re doing this interview series with Docker Captains.

We’d like to hear more about their love stories with Docker, their likes and dislikes, their battle scars and more. Without further ado, we’d like to introduce Lorenzo Fontana, DevOps Expert at Kiratech

asap

JAXenter: Can you tell us a little bit about your first contact with Docker? Was it love at first sight?

Lorenzo Fontana: It happened in early 2013, I had a lot of thoughts but the first thing I did was look at how it was implemented. That was a great learning experience for me.

JAXenter: Docker is revolutionizing IT — that is what we read and hear very often. Do you think this is true? If we were to look beyond the hype, what’s so disruptive about Docker technology?

Lorenzo Fontana: Yes it is. The most important thing to know about the Docker project (now The Moby Project) and Docker Inc. is that they are good at making difficult things easier and that’s what they are doing not just with Docker.

JAXenter: How is Docker different from a normal virtual machine?

Lorenzo Fontana: I have a blog post for that but it’s not definitely worth comparing the two technologies.
If you prefer a one-liner: “Containers are processes, VMs are servers”

JAXenter: How do you use Docker in your daily work? 

Lorenzo Fontana: My company is writing an Open Source for Docker and other containerization technologies. I’m also daily involved in Docker doing mainly reviews on issues and PRs. 

I do a lot of consultancy to help companies using containers and Docker by reflection. I used Docker for a while to spawn GUI software on my computer, then I switched to systemd-nspawn. In the future, I’ll probably go to runc.

JAXenter: What issues do you experience when working with Docker? What are the current challenges?

Lorenzo Fontana: Staying updated is the major challenge. The technology is evolving a lot.

The other challenge now is to do stateful containers. There’s a lot to do in that way.

JAXenter: Talking about the evolution of the Docker ecosystem: How do you comment on Docker’s decision to donate containerd runtime to CNCF?

Lorenzo Fontana: That’s just the right decision, we don’t want another thing like the Browsers war!

JAXenter: Is there a special feature you would like to see in one of the next Docker releases?

Lorenzo Fontana: I don’t know if Docker needs more features right now. I would prefer it if they would be consolidating existing things.

JAXenter: Could you share one of your favorite tips when using Docker?

Lorenzo Fontana: Not many people already know about multi-staged builds, another cool thing is the fact that now Docker handles configs and secrets.

Also, a lot happens in the implementation, just get one project under the Docker or the Moby organizations on GitHub, there are a lot of implemented things that can open your eyes on how things work.

Thank you!

Author
Hartmut Schlosser
Hartmut Schlosser is an editor for JAXenter and a specialist in Java Enterprise-Technologies, Eclipse & ALM, Android and Business Technology. Before working at S&S Media he studied Computer Science, Music, Anthropology and French Philology.

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