Docker Software

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Docker open source software packages applications and all their dependencies into LXC virtual containers that run on any Linux distribution.

The Docker command line interface (CLI) makes it a building-block tool that can virtually eliminate "dependency hell." Docker may do for application packaging what Git has done for source code management.

Unlike GUI-only software, any Linux CLI application can easily be controlled and presented by a GUI (graphical user interface). No doubt, numerous GUIs will soon appear and integration with IDE's like Geany and Eclipse are about as complicated as throwing together a salad.

A CLI command and its arguments (parameters) are just a string of printable ASCII text, so they constitute an ad-hoc "meta-language command." One that can be combined, Lego-blocks-like, with any combination of other CLI programs in infinite ways.

While any powerful compiled language like C++ or Java can call CLI applications, solutions are most often crafted more rapidly in interpreted environments like Linux shells. GTK+ based tools like GtkDialog, Yad, Zenity and xmessage add the GUI presentation and control functionality to these shell scripts, while Python, PHP, Perl or even Javascript may be used for more complex graphical interfaces.

Docker provides an extremely lightweight, but extremely powerful (dare I say, "elegant"?) framework for packaging and distributing software. It allows building on existing containers while keeping different versions isolated, and do it all with a single command supporting a host of options.
Docker will definitely be part of my development future.


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