As system virtualization gives way to evolving and more elastic cloud-based platforms and services, the applications that run on these new infrastructures could someday push the outer limits of today's virtual machines (VMs) and even the underlying OSes -- notably Linux and Windows. There's growing consensus that software containers will provide the portability, speed and scale needed for these applications and infrastructure components.
Containers are frequently described as lightweight runtime environments with many of the core components of a VM and isolated services of an OS designed to package and execute these micro-services. While containers have long existed as extensions to Linux distributions (there are no native Windows commercial containers yet), each has come with its own flavor.
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