MapR seeks DevOps love: Stateful storage WLTM Docker containers

Welcome to the party, guys. A bit late but welcome anyway

MapR says it is has immediate availability for the industry's first persistent storage for containers that offers complete state access to files, database tables, and message streams from any location.

The MapR Converged Data Platform for Docker includes the MapR Persistent Client Container (PACC).

MapR trots out the cliché that enterprises' move towards Docker and container adoption is held up because containers are stateless yet enterprise data, which containers access, is not. For MapR, the biggest obstacle to enterprise container adoption in production use is moving beyond stateless web applications:

The biggest blocker today is data persistence, because without it applications cannot scale elastically to meet business requirements and cannot survive routine infrastructure failures [or] maintenance windows.

So containers need access to persistent storage. This has not escaped other suppliers who have also come up with solutions to the problem such as Atlantis, CloudByte, Minio, Nexenta, and Red Hat.

The edge MapR says it has over alternatives is this: "Until now, only point solutions for file or block storage have been available with no comprehensive, secure data services for stateful containers." We're told by John L Myers, managing research director at Enterprise Management Associates, that "the MapR Converged Platform empowers the deployment of stateful containerised applications via shared, multi-tenant data and streaming services."

In particular MapR says its Converged Data Platform for Docker offers:

  • Secure, reliable, high-performance data storage for configuration, logging, and binary state
  • Scale-out NoSQL K/V and Document Database storage for operational and light weight analytics
  • Global event streams with persistence for inter-microservice communication state
  • PACC provides:
    • A pre-built Docker container that provides application access to files, database tables, and streams
    • Secure authentication at the container level
    • Scalable, high performance
    • Extensible support for application layers
    • Availability in Docker Hub and as a Dockerfile for customisability

We have no details on how containerised applications get access to files, database tables, and streams. A blog by MapR's senior director of industry solutions Dale Kim discusses aspects of this.

Youtube Video

The blog saves us all from another video by providing a transcript, which says: "The MapR Converged Data Platform... acts as your persistent store. Not only do we have file access, but we also provide MapR-DB, which represents the JSON NoSQL document database, as well as MapR Streams, for your pub/sub framework. All those capabilities together provide the different types of data, the different types of formats and compute engines that you need as part of your overall infrastructure."

The "Persistent Application Client Container... allows you to deploy your applications within these containers that easily and automatically have access to persistent store within MapR."

Last year MapR introduced an ACE services layer for Docker containers that enables the containers, and included data volumes, to move from server to server without losing the data volume. The Converged Data Platform for Docker takes that a step further.

Hadoop data wrangler MapR was founded in 2009 and has taken in $174m in funding, the last infusion being in 2014, in the shape of an $80m D-round and $30m in debt financing. It got itself a new CEO, Matt Mills, in September last year. Previously he was MapR's president and COO, and came from Oracle.

Mills replaced co-founder John Schroeder who transitioned to being executive chairman. Schroeder had been a partner at MapR investor Lightspeed Ventures. We might suppose the CEO switch was encourage by MapR's backers getting impatient for more progress towards their desired exit.

It comes down to, we think, DevOps credibility and business adoption. If MapR gets blown out of the water here by Minio or someone else then life will become harder. It will just have to, um, contain itself and move on. Yes, yes, we'll get our coats. ®

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