Cisco launches validated designs under Docker container partnership

Just a week after announcing its partnership with enterprise container company Docker, Cisco has said it has already produced two validated design guides for storage architecture.
Written by Corinne Reichert, Contributor

Cisco's partnership with enterprise container solutions provider Docker has produced two validated designs, one aimed at utilising its own Unified Computing System (UCS) and the other for converged infrastructure.

"We have already released two Cisco validated design guides [for containers]," Satinder Sethi, VP of Data Centre and Cloud Solutions for Cisco, said at Cisco Live Melbourne on Wednesday.

"One that leverages UCS and Docker stack without any third-party storage ... and another one that's built on a FlexPod architecture."

The solutions will see Cisco's UCS and converged infrastructure solutions combined with Docker Datacentre with Docker Enterprise Edition (EE) in an effort to reduce complexity, increase automation, and improve security and resilience, the company said.

"We are taking their stack, integrating that with UCS, and delivering turnkey container stacks to customers so they can actually build stable microservices architectures for their different applications," Sethi added.

In all, Cisco and Docker have launched three joint solutions: Cisco's validated design based on Cisco USC; Cisco's validated design on FlexPod converged infrastructure; and Contiv, an open-source Cisco-sponsored networking fabric that was made available during Cisco Live Berlin late last month.

Announced in early March, the partnership with Docker provides an inroad for Cisco into the container-as-a-service (CaaS) segment, which Sethi said is growing fast.

"IDC claims that there were about 7 million hosts that were used for containers in 2016; that number's expected to double this year, and by 2020, they expect about 43 million host servers providing containers," Sethi said at Cisco Live Melbourne.

"If that is the growth volume that we are looking at, obviously it becomes imperative to deliver customer solutions around containers, so we announced our strategic partnership with Docker."

In announcing the partnership, Cisco said it would allow for the delivery of "essential container capabilities for application-centric datacentre and cloud infrastructure".

"[The] combination of Cisco's leading UCS product line for cloud infrastructure and Docker's containerised technology will offer customers high levels of security, manageability, and scale," Liz Centoni, senior VP of Cisco Computing Systems Product Group, said at the time.

"Developers and IT, working together, can now build, ship, and deploy container applications anywhere."

Cisco first updated its Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) software to support Docker's solutions back in December 2015 via Project Contiv to provide open-source container operations.

The networking technology giant also used Cisco Live Melbourne to announce a series of new solutions for its converged infrastructure VersaStack product to include software-defined storage and hybrid cloud capabilities alongside IBM.

Disclosure: Corinne Reichert travelled to Cisco Live in Melbourne as a guest of Cisco

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