Home / Definitions / Docker


Ali Azhar
Last Updated November 4, 2021 10:00 am

Docker is an open-source platform used for developing and running applications by allowing users to package the software application into containers. Containers are standardized executable units of software in which the code of the application is packaged. Containers simplify the delivery of code and are becoming increasingly popular as businesses shift to cloud-native deployment systems. Docker’s approach allows software developers to separate the infrastructure from the application so the software can be delivered quickly. Being able to deliver the code quickly means reducing the time between writing the code and production. Docker is designed to optimize the shipping, testing, and deployment of application code.

How does Docker work?

Critical components include the engine, which is responsible for the overall function of the platform, along with the server, client, and REST API. The server is used for creating Docker containers, images, and networks. The client allows interaction between Docker and the user, while the REST API is used to specify Docker’s interaction with the Server. 

How much does it cost?

Docker is available in four editions: Personal, Pro, Team, and Business. The Personal plan is free, the Pro plan is for $5/month, the Team plan is $7/user/month with a minimum of five users, and the Business plan is for $21/user/month. The business plan is recommended for medium- to large-sized businesses that require full functionality. 

What are the key features?

Docker offers several key features including the ability to support multiple applications with different dependencies and requirements. Docker can be used to host different applications as long as the application is designed for the same operating system. Another key feature is that is optimized for storage as containers consume little disk space. Compared to a virtual machine (VM) server, Docker does not need an operating system installed for the applications to run. This allows a quick boot up—a few seconds compared to a VM that can take up to five minutes to boot.

How can businesses benefit from using Docker?

Docker’s primary advantages include optimized storage, fast software development, robust and flexible design, and reduced costs. When in use, development costs are kept down apps running in a containerized environment require fewer hardware resources.  Docker also delivers cost benefits by minimizing the deployment time which results in reduced overhead costs and extra work for the software developers.

Docker is scalable and portable. This environment-free feature is beneficial for the development and deployment teams. The separation of the containers from the rest of the system infrastructure means maintenance is straightforward. Businesses can allow their developers to spend less time developing and debugging apps, and more time launching new features and functionality for the end-users.