Unikernels: The Next Generation of Cloud Technology

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Unikernels Compared to Containers

Unikernels facilitate the very same desirable attributes described by container proponents, with the addition of impressive security, which few other solutions can match. They deliver impressive flexibility, speed and versatility for cross-platform environments. And, like container-based solutions, unikernels are easy to deploy. They also retain the rich hypervisor ecosystem and enable isolation, live migration and robust SLA. Additionally, unikernels provide container-like properties such as sub-second boot time, density and simplicity. They also offer an extremely tiny, specialized runtime footprint much less vulnerable to attack.

Most technologists have heard about software containers (or simply "containers") – a technology that became popularized by Docker, which is an open platform for building, shipping and running distributed applications through containers. Containers use shared operating systems to create a capsule, of sorts, to contain your application.

They are increasingly popular, but are not the panacea able to solve all the new challenges cloud computing presents. Problems mainly pertaining to security tend to hinder this technology. However, a new technology on the rise — unikernels — holds great promise for the next generation of cloud infrastructure.

For this slideshow, the Xen Project provides background on what this new technology is, how it fits within the greater cloud infrastructure ecosystem, why it's well-suited to the future of cloud computing, how it compares with containers, and how to choose between the unikernels and containers to best support the needs of specific IT environments.

 

Related Topics : Cloud Computing, Dell, Services Vendors, SMBs, Web Platform Vendors

 
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