Windows Containers – What is it and why should we care?

This post is originally published as article within SDN Magazine on February 28th, 2017. One of the hot topics within the Microsoft development community right now is undoubtedly the “container” topic. Following the success of both Docker and containers on Linux, Microsoft developed a Windows container implementation on Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10. After two and a half years of development plus one year of running this container technology in preview for insiders (Windows Server 2016 TP3 – TP5), September of 2016 finally saw Microsoft’s announcement that it had released Windows Server 2016 to the public. While the container technology and Containerized Delivery have been used by non-Microsoft focused enterprises for a few years now (Linux has had its container technology since August 2008), the Microsoft community is only at the beginning of this new journey. This is, therefore, the perfect moment to ask ourselves whether we should care about Windows containers, and whether we should look

Deep dive into Windows Server Containers and Docker – Part 2 – Underlying implementation of Windows Server Containers

With the introduction of Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 3 in August 2015, Microsoft enabled the container technology on the Windows platform. While Linux had its container technology since August 2008 such functionality was not supported on Microsoft operating systems before. Thanks to the success of Docker on Linux, Microsoft decided almost 3 years ago to start working on a container implementation for Windows. Since September 2016 we are able to work with a public released version of this new container technology in Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10. But what is the difference between containers and VMs? And how are Windows containers implemented internally within the Windows architecture? In this blogpost we’ll dive into the underlying implementation of containers on Windows. Containers vs VMs Many container introductions start with the phrase that “Containers are lightweight VMs”. Although this may help people to get a conceptual understanding of what containers are,  it is important to notice that this statement is a 100% wrong and can be very