Software AG’s support for Docker

Software AG embraces the Docker® platform

This week, Software AG was at DockerCon in Copenhagen to announce support for its products on the Docker platform. This makes key components of the Digital Business Platform more accessible than ever and opens the way for customers to implement microservices-based applications using the Software AG technology they love.

Issue 4, 2017 Download PDF

What is Docker?

Docker, founded in 2013, provides container technology that allows applications to run in lightweight, isolated containers, making them extremely portable. The advantage of this is that you take away all the environmental differences that make deploying complex applications so difficult. We’ve all heard those dreaded words from a developer when a deployment or test fails in a different environment: “Well it works on MY machine!”

By including all layers of a runtime stack, including parts of the OS, the application runtime and the application itself, along with its configuration, you ensure that the container has within it everything it needs to run the application. And if you need to change anything, whether it’s a change to the application, or an updated configuration, or a patch to the OS or app server, then you simply rebuild the container and rerun your tests.

That sounds a lot like a Virtual Machine (VM)

Docker is often compared to VM technology, like VMWare®, but there are key differences. Docker containers do not include an entire copy of the OS. Resources are shared with the host OS and with other containers using a similar base, so the containers are much smaller than equivalent VMs. They use less disk space, less memory and less CPU. They start up more quickly and the framework provided for building storing and distributing them has been extremely well thought-out.

Containers Virtual Machines

Containers are an abstraction at the app layer that packages code and dependencies together. Multiple containers can run on the same machine and share the OS kernel with other containers, each running as isolated processes in userspace. Containers take up less space than VMs (container images are typically tens of MBs in size) and start almost instantly

Virtual machines (VMs) are an abstraction of physical hardware turning one server into many servers. The hypervisor allows multiple VMs to run on a single machine. Each VM includes a full copy of an operating system, one or more apps, necessary binaries and libraries - taking up tens of GBs. VMs can also be slow to boot.

Comparing containers and VMs – Source:


What can containers do for me?

Containers are designed to be built early in your application development cycle and as part of a DevOps pipeline. The level of automation that is possible, along with their lightweight nature means you can afford to include relatively small pieces of functionality in each container. That allows you to manage the lifecycle of each such unit independently. This is the foundation of a microservices architecture.

Software AG already uses microservices in many of its applications and cloud offerings, such as ARIS Connect and webMethods Integration Cloud. Now, through the use of Docker, you can bring microservices to your own landscape.

You can take services and packages developed on webMethods Integration Server and package them into a webMethods microservices container for deploying on the Docker platform. You can either use the build scripts provided by Software AG, or use the ready-to-go Docker images available on Docker Store.

You can use Docker images to quickly spin up instances of Terracotta. Or you can run your Apama applications quickly in a Docker version of the Apama Correlator.

You can build your own custom Docker images of any Software AG product that supports Command Central using the special Command Central builder image.

Get started with Docker

Docker is supported on many platforms, but primarly on Linux® and recent versions of Windows®. You can also easily experiment on Windows 7 using the Docker Toolkit, which is extremely easy to set up and use.

You can find Software AG’s ready-to-go Docker images on Docker Store:

And there are great examples of scripts for using Docker with Command Central on our Github® site:

It’s time to join the container generation!
So what are you waiting for?