Developers turn to containers, microservices to stay on top of frenzied release schedules

Close to one-third of developers say they are now required to issue releases multiple times a day, new survey shows.

The age of containers has arrived in full force. A new survey of 1,800 IT professionals finds two-thirds of organizations are using, or investigating using containers to faster and more efficiently integrate and provide microservices and services.

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Containers arrive, just in time.

Photo: Joe McKendrick

The rising use of containers maps to the increasingly hectic pace of software delivery demanded of developer shops. The recent survey released by NGINX, Inc., finds 28% of developers report they are required to issue updates or new releases "several times a day." Another 70% -- virtually the remainder of the batch -- release new code at least once a week.

Accordingly, when asked about their favorite tools or platforms, Docker and Node.js jump to the head of the list as developers' favorite tools. Their least favorite tools or platforms? Microsoft Windows and Java get this distinction, cited as "slow, heavy and complex."

Two-thirds are using or planning to use containers, and 37% are already using containers either in development or production, the NGINX survey also finds. At least a third of this group running more than 80 percent of their workloads on containers. Half of those running containers are using them for mission-critical applications.

Microservices also continue to increase in applications. Nearly 70% of organizations are either using or investigating the use of microservices. Forty-four percent using microservices either in development or in production. Larger organizations are lagging in their use of microservices, with 36% having these fine-grained services in development or production.

The survey also explored cloud adoption, finding that Amazon Web Services is still the public cloud service of choice. When asked what they believe is the best cloud service, half of respondents said Amazon Web Services (AWS), which is more than Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, and Rackspace combined.

Application performance is an issue for 75% of organizations, with 25% claiming their application is outright slow. Organizations clearly see the gap, but many don't dedicate time and resources to address the issue. In fact, 31% said their organizations address performance infrequently or not at all.

Still, the survey also finds that developers are taking charge and are gaining more decision-making power in the organization, with 74% saying developers are responsible for choosing the organization's application development and delivery tools.