Mirantis to keep Docker Swarm buzzing around, pledges new features

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Mirantis has pledged its open-ended support for Swarm, the container orchestration platform it inherited through its firesale purchase of Docker Enterprise last year.

The OpenStack specialist has said it will invest in new features, apparently confounding expectations that Swarm would wither on the vine after originally pledging no more than two years worth of support.

In a statement yesterday, Mirantis’ Rick Pugh, wrote “We’re excited to announce our continued support for Docker Swarm, while also investing in new features requested by customers.”

While acknowledging the firm’s initial two year lifeline for Swarm, he said that discussions with customers, “have led us to the conclusion that our customers want continued support of Swarm without an implied end date.”

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The firm wanted to “to simplify container usage at enterprise scale with freedom of choice for orchestrators…and our customers can rest assured that Mirantis will continue to support their Swarm investments.”

The firm had recently debuted Swarm Jobs, he continued, “a new service mode enabling run-and-done workloads on a Swarm cluster.”

The company also announced “a commitment to the development of Cluster Volume Support with CSI Plugins”, an idea originally discussed at last year’s DockerCon 2019. “By leveraging the Container Storage Interface plugin architecture, Swarm will be able to use the growing CSI ecosystem to handle distributed persistent volumes, supporting a wider range of backend storage options and more flexible and intelligent scheduling.”

Both features are on its 2020 roadmap, he said, with dates due to be announced at KubeCon EU.

Container pioneer Docker imploded last November, after six years of popularising containers and attracting lashings of funding. The stunning turn of events was seen as a result of its failure to find a convincing business model, or a reason why customers should choose Swarm over the increasingly popular Kubernetes.

Mirantis bought the Docker Enterprise business, with 300 staffers transferring to the firm. An 80 strong rump remained with Docker, which said it would focus on Docker Desktop and Docker Hub. That team has kept itself occupied, shipping an update of the Docker Desktop product last month.

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