Modularizing applications with containerization using tools like Kubernetes and Docker

Use case

Challenges

Main challenges

The traditional application model features software solutions that run directly on bare-metal servers or virtual machines. Businesses face challenges of getting their applications to run reliably when migrated from one computing environment to another—for example, transferring software from a developer’s device or a staging environment, or from a physical server in a data center to a virtual one in the cloud.

In most cases, the supporting software environment is not identical, and programming libraries keep changing, making it challenging to maintain scalability and portability in applications. As a result, DevOps engineers need to ramp up on multiple configurations, skills, and tools. The overall efficiency of a VM is limited, especially during peak load conditions that lead to intensive demand for CPU and memory from a physical machine running numerous VMs.

Business/technical goals

Digitize business models and processes faster while meeting IT requirements for reliable, agile, scalable, and secure applications, resulting in enhanced customer experience.

Allow for complete packaging of applications/services while eliminating the challenges of maintaining unique developer environments.

Modularizing applications with containerization using tools like Kubernetes and Docker offers a streamlined way for businesses to build, test, deploy, and redeploy applications on multiple environments, or from a developer’s local device to an on-premise data center or in the cloud.

Deploy and run distributed applications without launching an entire virtual machine (VM) for each application. Containers are lightweight and portable and require less overhead.

Approach

Containerization makes it possible for businesses to get applications to run reliably when moved from one computing environment to another.
A container features an entire runtime environment that includes an application, libraries, binaries, dependencies, and configuration files that the application needs to run reliably. 
Container management systems like Kubernetes provide automated mechanisms for deploying, maintaining, and scaling containerized applications. The tool groups containers that form an application into logical units for efficient discovery and management, allowing businesses to scale without increasing the Ops team.
Docker, on the other hand, offers an integrated, tested, and certified platform for developing, shipping, and running applications within containers. Additionally, Docker provides the Docker Hub framework to enhance rapid application development and deployment.

Situation before & after the implementation

Before

Running applications directly on bare-metal servers or virtual machines requires increased overheads and results in portability challenges due to disparities in development and deployment environments.

After

In times of ubiquitous digital transformation combined with dynamically changing market and customer requirements, modularizing applications with containerization using tools like Kubernetes and Docker offers flexibility, scalability, speed, agility, and security.

Modularizing applications with containerization leads to 59% improved application quality and reduced defects. The strategy also results in 57% reduced application downtime and costs.

Methodology

Immersion

Introduction with the client to understand his context - both business and technical. The aim of the phase is to explore this new context, gather the needs through exchange with the different key points of contact, answer unclear points, and agree on a defined scope.

Ideation

Proposition of several potential solutions that could fit the need and iterate on it based on client feedback. In this step, we can include a prototype or a Proof of Concept to have a better sense of the feasibility of the architecture to put in place with its different layers/components.

Implementation & tests

Iterative phase based on Agile methodologies & rituals: sprint planning, demo, retrospective, prioritization, etc. Each sprint will include the implementation of the technical architecture, the deployment of the infrastructure, and the development phase if required.

Production

Go in production with the defined solution and ensure post-production support if required.

Benefits

  • Scalable and cost-efficient - Modularizing applications with containerization abstracts away differences in underlying infrastructure and OS distributions. Containers have a small footprint and high portability, allowing businesses to scale and lower costs by hosting several of them in a single server. Containerization increases computing capabilities from 10 to 100 times that of legacy VM environments. 
  • Apps start instantaneously - Besides, users can start containerized applications almost instantly since they do not need the extra load of a hypervisor. Still, they run directly in the host machine’s kernel.
  • Less configuration - A Docker environment looks the same across multiple OS distributions and underlying infrastructure. This capability means that developers worry less about configurations variables while working with containerized applications. Containerizing applications allows businesses to run cloud-native applications on both virtual and physical infrastructure. 
  • Saves computing resources - Individual modules or microservices in containerized applications are instantiated only when needed, freeing up host resources.
  • Advanced modularity - Containerization allows for advanced modularity in applications. Instead of running an entire sophisticated software in one container, developers can split the application into modules based on the microservice concept. Businesses can make changes to a module without affecting the entire applications.
  • Enhanced DevOps strategy - Containerization enhances cloud-native development and deployment since it allows developers to focus more on application development roles without worrying about infrastructure provisioning and management. Docker and Kubernetes tools have become part of DevOps toolchains that would enable developers to focus on designing and building apps without worrying about provisioning and managing the underlying infrastructure.
  • Automated rollouts and rollbacks - Kubernetes allows developers to make continuous roll out changes to applications or configurations while examining the services to ensure that the modifications will not affect instances.  

Getting started with Technofy

Technofy has mastered the agile technique behind a vast of DevOps and cloud projects. Technofy consists of people and flexibility that enables the team to get a business started with containerization with Kubernetes and Docker. Technofy offers adequate consulting, architecture design, and infrastructure guidance to develop, optimize, and maintain application containerization strategy using the latest techniques and tools such as Docker and Kubernetes.
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