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Docker

131.6K
104.7K
+ 1
3.8K
Packer

541
502
+ 1
42
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Docker vs Packer: What are the differences?

What is Docker? Enterprise Container Platform for High-Velocity Innovation. The Docker Platform is the industry-leading container platform for continuous, high-velocity innovation, enabling organizations to seamlessly build and share any application — from legacy to what comes next — and securely run them anywhere.

What is Packer? Create identical machine images for multiple platforms from a single source configuration. Packer automates the creation of any type of machine image. It embraces modern configuration management by encouraging you to use automated scripts to install and configure the software within your Packer-made images.

Docker can be classified as a tool in the "Virtual Machine Platforms & Containers" category, while Packer is grouped under "Infrastructure Build Tools".

Some of the features offered by Docker are:

  • Integrated developer tools
  • open, portable images
  • shareable, reusable apps

On the other hand, Packer provides the following key features:

  • Super fast infrastructure deployment. Packer images allow you to launch completely provisioned and configured machines in seconds, rather than several minutes or hours.
  • Multi-provider portability. Because Packer creates identical images for multiple platforms, you can run production in AWS, staging/QA in a private cloud like OpenStack, and development in desktop virtualization solutions such as VMware or VirtualBox.
  • Improved stability. Packer installs and configures all the software for a machine at the time the image is built. If there are bugs in these scripts, they'll be caught early, rather than several minutes after a machine is launched.

"Rapid integration and build up" is the primary reason why developers consider Docker over the competitors, whereas "Cross platform builds" was stated as the key factor in picking Packer.

Docker and Packer are both open source tools. It seems that Docker with 53.8K GitHub stars and 15.5K forks on GitHub has more adoption than Packer with 9.03K GitHub stars and 2.46K GitHub forks.

According to the StackShare community, Docker has a broader approval, being mentioned in 3471 company stacks & 3322 developers stacks; compared to Packer, which is listed in 113 company stacks and 20 developer stacks.

Decisions about Docker and Packer
Florian Sager
IT DevOp at Agitos GmbH · | 2 upvotes · 261.6K views
Chose
LXDLXD
over
DockerDocker

lxd/lxc and Docker aren't congruent so this comparison needs a more detailed look; but in short I can say: the lxd-integrated administration of storage including zfs with its snapshot capabilities as well as the system container (multi-process) approach of lxc vs. the limited single-process container approach of Docker is the main reason I chose lxd over Docker.

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Pros of Docker
Pros of Packer
  • 823
    Rapid integration and build up
  • 688
    Isolation
  • 518
    Open source
  • 505
    Testa­bil­i­ty and re­pro­ducibil­i­ty
  • 459
    Lightweight
  • 217
    Standardization
  • 184
    Scalable
  • 105
    Upgrading / down­grad­ing / ap­pli­ca­tion versions
  • 87
    Security
  • 84
    Private paas environments
  • 33
    Portability
  • 25
    Limit resource usage
  • 16
    Game changer
  • 15
    I love the way docker has changed virtualization
  • 13
    Fast
  • 11
    Concurrency
  • 7
    Docker's Compose tools
  • 5
    Easy setup
  • 5
    Fast and Portable
  • 4
    Because its fun
  • 3
    Makes shipping to production very simple
  • 2
    It's dope
  • 2
    Highly useful
  • 1
    Very easy to setup integrate and build
  • 1
    Package the environment with the application
  • 1
    Does a nice job hogging memory
  • 1
    Open source and highly configurable
  • 1
    Simplicity, isolation, resource effective
  • 1
    MacOS support FAKE
  • 1
    Its cool
  • 1
    Docker hub for the FTW
  • 1
    HIgh Throughput
  • 27
    Cross platform builds
  • 9
    Vm creation automation
  • 4
    Bake in security
  • 1
    Good documentation
  • 1
    Easy to use

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Cons of Docker
Cons of Packer
  • 8
    New versions == broken features
  • 6
    Unreliable networking
  • 6
    Documentation not always in sync
  • 4
    Moves quickly
  • 3
    Not Secure
    Be the first to leave a con

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    What companies use Docker?
    What companies use Packer?
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    What are some alternatives to Docker and Packer?
    LXC
    LXC is a userspace interface for the Linux kernel containment features. Through a powerful API and simple tools, it lets Linux users easily create and manage system or application containers.
    rkt
    Rocket is a cli for running App Containers. The goal of rocket is to be composable, secure, and fast.
    Kubernetes
    Kubernetes is an open source orchestration system for Docker containers. It handles scheduling onto nodes in a compute cluster and actively manages workloads to ensure that their state matches the users declared intentions.
    Cloud Foundry
    Cloud Foundry is an open platform as a service (PaaS) that provides a choice of clouds, developer frameworks, and application services. Cloud Foundry makes it faster and easier to build, test, deploy, and scale applications.
    Vagrant
    Vagrant provides the framework and configuration format to create and manage complete portable development environments. These development environments can live on your computer or in the cloud, and are portable between Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.
    See all alternatives