ContainerX ships toolset billed as ‘vSphere for containers’

ContainerX architecture

ContainerX Inc. today released its multi-tenant container platform in both paid and free versions. Billed as equivalent to VMware Inc.s’ vSphere for containers, the product is intended to do for containers what dynamic resource scheduling (DRS) did for virtual machines nearly a decade ago: make them scalable, manageable and elastic.

ContainerX claims to be the world’s first multi-tenant container-as-a-service platform for both Linux and Windows. It provides a single interface to all containers running in an organization on bare metal, virtual machines and in public and private clouds. The company was founded by a team of former Citrix Systems, Inc., Microsoft, and VMware Inc. engineers and backed in part by former VMware Chief Technology Officer Steve Herrod.

The company is addressing a resource allocation problem that plagues containers as their adoption surges. A survey released this morning by ClusterHQ Inc. reports that container use in production has nearly doubled over the past year. ContainerX’s “elastic clusters” and “container pools” not only keep containers out of each other’s way in multi-tenant environments but enable administrators to dynamically allocate resources like CPU and memory to individual containers as performance needs dictate. ContainerX said its product comes complete with orchestration, compute, networking and storage management support. It’s a scale-out platform with dynamic addition and removal of hosts.

The product currently supports Docker Inc.’s container platform. Kubernetes and Mesos support will be added later.

ContainerX launched in November and has released five beta test versions since then, adding integration with VMware’s vSphere and support for Microsoft Windows in the process. The latter is a big deal, executives said, since the container market has been mostly Linux-based until now. The service runs on both Windows Server 2016 and Microsoft Azure

The free version supports up to 100 CPU cores. Paid gold and platinum versions are also available.