Do containers stack up as data storage building blocks?
#StorageArchitect There’s an almost religious divide between those who see containers as entirely stateless objects and others taking a more pragmatic approach that says state and containers is an inevitable thing. In the stateless model, data is assumed to be replicated and protected by many container instances, so the loss of any individual container doesn’t mean you’ll lose data. In practical terms, this idea just doesn’t work, because in the enterprise, we have to meet a set of standards around application availability, auditing and compliance. Assuming we want to containerise our databases (rather than relying on them remaining as virtual machine instances) and we surely will, then persistent data is as inevitable as death or taxes. However, what about a more contrary approach? How about building storage systems from containers? Stateless persistence The persistence of data is due to the media we store it on, not the system through which we access it. As an example, many vendors provide the ability to perform head upgrades on their dual controller-based systems. This is because persistent data and configuration information is stored on the media (HDDs and SSDs) and in many cases the media is self-describing. This means if we have a software crash, theoretically metadata and configuration information can be re-read by parsing the data on disk.