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Microsoft Buying Deis To Facilitate Kubernetes on Azure

Microsoft announced plans today to acquire Deis, a startup company that offers open source tools and training to facilitate Kubernetes use.

Kubernetes is an open source container orchestration system devised by Google. It's typically used for managing distributed applications across clusters, but it may not be too easy for developers to use. To that end, Deis has built three tools. Its Helm tool is a package manager for installing and upgrading apps. Workflow is a command-line interface application deployment tool with release and rollback capabilities, along with log and troubleshooting controls. Lastly, the Steward tool is a "Kubernetes-native service broker" that acts as a gateway between apps and services both inside and outside the cluster.

Deis has been "at the center of the container transformation" with its "Kubernetes container management technologies," explained Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the Microsoft Cloud and Enterprise Group, in an announcement. The Deis acquisition will add expertise in open source technologies to Microsoft, facilitating Linux, Windows and Azure container deployments, he added.

"We expect Deis' technology to make it even easier for customers to work with our existing container portfolio including Linux and Windows Server Containers, Hyper-V Containers and Azure Container Service, no matter what tools they choose to use," Guthrie stated.

Deis will continue its focus on making it easier to deploy containers, including "making Azure the best place to run containerized workloads," said Gabriel Monroy, chief technology officer at Deis, in a blog post. He also promised that the Deis team would continue its open source support.

"From our new home at Microsoft you should expect nothing less," Monroy stated, regarding Deis' open source commitments. "We will continue our contributions to Workflow, Helm, and Steward and look forward to maintaining our deep engagement with the Kubernetes community."

Microsoft had announced in February that its Azure Container Service was capable of supporting Kubernetes. At that time, it also noted that running Windows Server Containers with Kubernetes on the Azure Container Service was still at the preview stage. The Docker Swarm orchestration option for the Azure Container Service was also described as being at preview. Microsoft released the code for Azure Container Service's engine as an open source project about five months ago.

In related news, Microsoft announced last week that its Azure Container Registry had reached the "general availability" stage, meaning that it is deemed ready for use in production environments. The Azure Container Registry lets developers "create and maintain Azure container registries to store and manage private Docker container images," Microsoft indicated. The registry service works with Linux and Windows container images, but Docker technology adds the capability to resolve the operating system version automatically.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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