Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Sunday, September 24, 2023

Linux, Docker Gain in Public Cloud Deployments 


As the enterprise application stack is fleshed out with micro-services and other emerging tiers, more applications are running in the cloud as the Linux operating system emerges as a "legitimate option" across leading public cloud platforms, a new report concludes.

The survey released earlier this month by Sumo Logic, the cloud-native analytics platform vendor based in Redwood City, Calif., concludes that the Linux OS is making major inroads among leading public cloud providers. For example, Linux dominates on Amazon Web Services (NASDAQ: AMZN) and is making inroads on Microsoft Azure (NASDAQ: MSFT). The survey found that more than 80 percent of AWS workloads are deployed in Linux while Azure deployments on Linux tripled from last year to 12 percent.

The cloud application survey also confirms earlier reports about growing Docker container adoption as well as continuing unease about public cloud security, or what the Sumo Logic report calls "cloud security paradox." Those concerns are driven by what security vendors noted is confusion over the "shared responsibility" model for cloud security.

The Sumo Logic survey found that Docker containers running on AWS jumped to 25 percent of all workloads over the past year. Meanwhile, deployment of Lambda server-less computing on Amazon nearly doubled on annual basis to 23 percent.

"It’s clear that Docker is a critical foundational layer for modern applications," the survey concluded. "Significant adoption of Docker also implies growing use of micro-services-based applications."

Cloud migrations also are providing an opening for upgrading databases that are seen as critical to cloud-native applications. Hence, the survey finds that NoSQL databases have overtaken traditional relational databases, especially on the AWS cloud. Of those, MySQL lead the way with MongoDB, Redis and Riak accounting for half of database adoption on the AWS cloud.

Other surveys have found that enterprises on average are using three cloud providers as they roll out multi-cloud strategies. Nevertheless, IT executives continue to worry about cloud security. One reason is that legacy on-premise security and security information event management tools fall short on the cloud. Moreover, the survey found that only about half of AWS customers are using tools like CloudTrail, the cloud provider's primary security audit tool.

"Enterprises of all sizes must leverage security, networking and audit services from their native cloud providers," the survey concluded. Other tools include virtual private networks that can be used, for example, to route critical data from branch offices to a central office before relaying these data to the cloud. Other cloud security tools include analyzing flow logs.

While many vendor surveys are based on questionnaires or are farmed out to market researchers, Sumo Logic claims its survey results represent "active and anonymized data" from more than 1,500 customers using its machine data analytics platform. Hence, the company claims "exclusive access to the rich customer data and insights that showcase the nuts and bolts of how forward-thinking digital businesses are architecting and running their modern applications on the leading cloud service providers."



About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).