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How using IBM TADDM to manage Docker containers and applications can help reduce infrastructure costs

Consumers have changed a lot since the age of the first Industrial Revolution in the 19th century. Today, we are living in the world of Industry 4.0, where integrated computing, networking and physical processes are revolutionizing manufacturing. This has made consumers more demanding than ever. They want performance-driven products, they want variety, they want a fully integrated ecosystem and most importantly, they want everything now—at the speed of a nanosecond!

As an IBM Business Partner, where does this leave you? For example, in an environment where speed is critical, technology developers require tools that allow them fast access to resources, minimize process overhead, and enable them to be more productive. So the challenge becomes knowing which technologies your developer clients are focused on, and determining how you can add the most value.

One such technology is Docker—a popular platform that is increasingly being used by developers to efficiently deploy their applications. Of course from an infrastructure perspective, managing Docker can be less straightforward, and this is an area where IBM Business Partners have a clear opportunity to help. This can be done by introducing a configuration management tool like IBM Tivoli Application Dependency Discovery Manager (TADDM) for the benefit of your clients who either use Docker, or plan to in the future.

What is Docker?

Let’s back up a step. First of all, Docker is an open platform that allows developers to build, ship and run applications quickly and easily. In enterprise environments, Docker can separate applications from their infrastructure and treat the infrastructure like a managed application. A Docker container, which includes instances of images, can be deployed in seconds and can hold everything needed for an application to run.

With Docker, developers can very easily create a new application rather than look for an existing application. Docker applications can run on a fraction of a server. There is the potential to have far more containers on a single server than one would have with a virtual infrastructure. However, this can quickly lead to container sprawl. With container sprawl, an enterprise can quickly lose control of the container environment. That is why it is necessary to be prepared to manage Docker effectively, to control its applications and the sprawl of containers.

To put it simply, managing all the Docker containers and applications can become overwhelming. Adequately protecting and managing a large volume of containers may require another level of resources and capabilities. And that’s where you come in!

Managing Docker with IBM TADDM

To help your clients as we’ve done, we recommend TADDM, which is a configuration management tool that helps IT operations personnel ensure, maintain and improve application availability in an enterprise. TADDM discovers Docker as a part of an overall cloud, while giving your clients the right tool to control container sprawl and infrastructure costs.

TADDM is primarily an application which maps out IT network infrastructure, getting complete information about each and every element (Application Discovery) and finding out the relationships between each (Application Dependency). For example, using TADDM we can easily find out that Application A accesses Database E, which is running on Server F, to quickly determine Application A’s dependency on Server F.

In fact, the new release of TADDM (7.3 FP04) provides a suite of software that can detect and discover Docker clusters, hosts, host attributes, containers and overlay networking stacks from the deployed Docker clusters or individual Docker hosts. TADDM can also detect Docker Swarm and discover subsequent Docker Swarm cluster elements such as Swarm Manager, Configured Services and a list of networks for the Swarm cluster.

Ultimately, it’s about enabling your developer clients to expand their productivity and creativity, without getting bogged down in managing their new infrastructure. And that’s a good place to be for us IBM Business Partners—freeing up our clients to keep doing what they do best!

For more information about IBM TADDM, please visit the IBM Knowledge Center. You can also provide your feedback on this topic by using the comments feature below.

Manish Lakhani
Offering Manager for IBM Application Discovery Dependency Manager and Control Desk products, Aricent India

Manish Lakhani is the Offering Manager for IBM Application Discovery Dependency Manager and Control Desk products at Aricent India. Manish is an expert professional in Pre-Sales/Business Development activities with over 14 years experience in the IT field, and is adept at cultivating, managing and leveraging client relationships.

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