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Cloud Native Computing Foundation unveils new members, projects as container market booms

Matthew Finnegan | April 3, 2017
The foundation was set up to focus on the development of open source tools for 'cloud-ready' applications.


The Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) unveiled new additions to its member programme at its user conference in Berlin this week, as well as adding new technologies containerd and rkt to its growing portfolio of open source projects.

The not-for-profit organisation, which operates as part of the Linux Foundation, was set up little more than a year ago to focus on the development of open source tools relating to the fast growing area of 'cloud-ready' applications. These are typically built around microservice architectures and make use of tools such as containers to make software development and deployment faster and simpler.

It is an area which has been popular with startups creating new, greenfield applications. Larger enterprise firms are also taking the approach, predominantly for new software developments, but increasingly for older apps too, which are being refactored to run easily in the cloud.

Unsurprisingly, there are many tech vendors attracted to the fast growing market. A recent report from 451 Research estimated that the application container market alone was worth $762 million in 2016, and is set to reach $2.7 billion in 2020. With a CAGR of 40 percent, 451 says that it is now tracking 125 vendors operating in the container space.

CNCF has seen a range of tech firms join its project since launching, with Cisco, CoreOS, Docker, Fujitsu, and Google on the governing board. At CloudNativeCon + KubeCon Europe, Dell EMC was announced as the latest vendor to join CNCF as a platinum member.

"They are making major investments in cloud storage, with their REXRay storage project," said CNCF executive director, Dan Kohn. SUSE also joins as a gold member, while there were four new silver members: Solinea, HarmonyCloud, QAware and TenxCloud. There are now 81 members in total.


New partnerships

Kohn revealed that Docker's core container runtime, containerd, will be supported as an incubating project by CNCF. Docker had announced that the project would be contributed to a "neutral" foundation earlier this year. It is the latest in a number of systems open sourced by Docker, beginning with libcontainer in 2014.

"It is a really natural partnership with Kubernetes, gRPC, Prometheus and our other projects," said Kohn.

CoreOS' rkt container engine was also accepted to the foundation. Introduced in 2014, rkt now has 178 contributors, over 5,000 commits and 59 releases.

"With Containerd and Rocket it is clear the CNCF is really the focal point for containerisation, and we are incredibly excited to have that market leadership and now be able to dedicate a huge amount of resources and hopefully help accelerate the development of those projects," Kohn said.

The new additions join monitoring tool Prometheus, OpenTracing, and logging system Fluentd, as well as container orchestration platform Kubernetes, originally developed at Google.


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