The idea of containers has been around for some time, but Docker Engine emerged in 2013 and is now considered the industry standard. They have simple developer tools, so containers are universal across platforms.
According to a recent IBM survey, 61% of container adopters used containers in 50% or more of the new applications they built during the past two years. Containerization allows personal and business apps and data to co-exist on a single device while staying within its confines.
Docker is the most popular open-source container format, and as such, Google Cloud Platform and Google Kubernetes Engine have enabled support for Docker containers. The main components of Docker are Client (Docker App), Server (storing files), registry ( storage for docker images), and Container(service built from Docker images). For now, let us focus on what docker registries are and how their role is important for containerization.
What is a Docker Registry?
A Docker registry is a specialized server that offers you a simple way to store and distribute system images. The same image may have many versions identifiable by their tags. A Docker registry is segmented into Docker repositories, with each repository containing all revisions of a single image. The registry lets you have your own local version of Docker and upload the images you develop. This can ease automation. Docker registry automates building, testing, and deployment – You can save time waiting for builds to complete and skip lengthy deployment processes.
This means that you should surely use the registry if you want to:
- have complete control over where your images are stored and fully own how they are distributed.
- Invest in a reliable, secure image distribution and storage system.
There are private Docker registries on the public cloud and on-premises. By default, the Docker engine interacts with Docker’s public, hosted registry instance, Docker Hub. Docker Hub operates as a marketplace for public container images, making it the perfect choice if you want to distribute an image publicly. In addition to private and public repositories, Docker Hub offers organization accounts, automated builds, and integration with source control providers like Bitbucket and GitHub.
What Makes Docker Registries Important for Containerization?
A Big Library of Trusted Images
Official Images published by Docker, Verified Publisher images (verified by the publisher and Docker Certified), and Docker Certified images all add a layer of trust when using the Docker Registry. With these base images, you can rest assured that you will have a reliable product that runs well and operates as it should. The library is also beneficial for the publishers as it helps them to showcase a project and make it more visible.
Built-In Security Features
Local image vulnerability scans in Docker Registry are beneficial for all accounts. To make sure your containers are safe to deploy, “Team” account users have access to audit logs and multifactor authentication. These can help you find out which devices accessed the container and help with any other security-related issues. In addition, you can constantly refresh the database to ensure that your vulnerability scans are up-to-date with new malware.
A Free Tier
Docker’s free plan currently allows for an infinite number of public repositories and one private repository with up to three collaborators. This plan is perfect for you to get a feel for the system and learn all of our tools. It is, however, unsuited for substantial development due to recent revisions to the terms of service.
Containers in Docker registries are organized into Repositories using tags. Tags are labels that make version control and release management easier. You can assign them to any completed build without having to reference the numerical build ID. You can tag an image with a name or label in the major.minor.patch format and quickly tell which image is which. Then, when you push the image to the registry, you will be able to pull down different image versions.
Features and Integrations That Enable CI/CD
Docker registries can automate your pipelines, enabling continuous integration and continuous delivery. They offer automated testing and webhooks to make it easier to set up reliable development processes. Moreover, they also support GitHub and Bitbucket integrations.
Currently, Docker is the most popular container deployment tool that makes containerization safe, easy, and quick. When deploying to production orchestrators, developers should store images in a registry, which works as a library of images. When installing the Docker engine, Docker Hub is the default hosted registry, but alternative hosted registries such as AWS, ACR, and Google’s registries are also accessible for public use.
Docker is the best possible solution if your company wants to make apps and workloads more portable and distributed, standardized, and efficient. Docker uses a lightweight containerization technique to enable independence between applications and infrastructure.