Container orchestration is the process of managing containers using automation. It allows organizations to automatically deploy, manage, scale and network containers and hosts, freeing engineers from having to complete these processes manually.
As software development has evolved from monolithic applications, containers have become the choice for developing new applications and migrating old ones. Containers are popular because they are easy to create and deploy quickly, regardless of the target environment. A single, small application can be composed of a dozen containers, and an enterprise may deploy thousands of containers across its apps and services.
The more containers an organization has, the more time and resources it must spend managing them. You could conceivably upgrade 25 containers manually, but it would take a considerable amount of time. Container orchestration can perform this and other critical life cycle management tasks in a fraction of the time and with little human intervention. Container orchestration is often a critical part of an organization’s approach to SOAR (security orchestration, automation and response).
In this article, we’ll explain the concept of container orchestration and how it works, look at common orchestration use cases, identify the most popular container orchestration platforms and tools, and offer guidance on how to get started.