A book published in 1981, called Nailing Jelly to a Tree, describes software as “nebulous and difficult to get a firm grip on.” That was true in 1981, and it is no less true nearly four decades since. Software, whether it is an application you or one that you built yourself, remains hard to deploy, hard to , and hard to run.

Docker containers provide a way to get a grip on software. You can use to wrap up an application in such a way that its deployment and runtime issues—how to expose it on a network, how to manage its use of storage and memory and I/O, how to control permissions—are handled outside of the application itself, and in a way that is consistent across all “containerized” apps. You can run your container on any OS-compatible host (Linux or ) that has the runtime installed.

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