Docker and containers for beginners

Docker and other container managers have changed the role of developers and administrators, and containers, when used properly, can make life easier. As a beginner, however, you are quickly confronted with many strong opinions: Some say containers are inefficient and actually long dead. Others advise ignoring Docker and going straight for Kubernetes or working with alternatives like Podman.

There are also many opinions about the safety of containers. While some rely on the supposed isolation provided by containers, others see the technology as a security nightmare. The truth is: without sufficient background knowledge, you can get yourself into many security problems. When examining the Internet, security researchers regularly find countless carelessly set up Docker environments. If you ignore the documentation when setting up Docker, you will quickly open the doors of your system to attackers. And also in the Docker Hub, the preferred source for container images, you can find many accidentally or willfully insecure images. Security researchers also regularly point out that between well-maintained and useful container images there are also insecure ones and even those created with fraudulent intent.

The c’t online workshop “Docker and Containers in Practice” is aimed at developers and administrators who want or should get into the subject for the first time – with a neutral view of Docker, possible alternatives and the advantages and disadvantages of the technology .

In addition to some theoretical knowledge about containers, the main focus is on everyday challenges and your own experiences on the command line: packaging software in containers, publishing services with TLS on the Internet and efficiently detecting problems in the containers. So that they can lend a hand, all participants in the workshop receive a cloud server instance on which they can reproduce the scenarios themselves. Using the documentation, you can then follow all the steps again at your leisure.

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The theoretical part deals with the role of Docker Inc. and the future of the company, alternatives such as Podman and the importance of open source and standardization in the container environment, as well as the differentiation from the container orchestrator Kubernetes.

After the two mornings, you will know how containers can support you in your work and will be able to put your own infrastructure into operation or provide your own software as Docker images.

  • Docker basics
  • Find and select images
  • Pack your own software
  • Publish services to the Internet using TLS
  • Find errors and evaluate logs
  • Hands-on in a prepared test environment

The workshop takes place from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in an online classroom, where there is always the opportunity to ask questions. On the first afternoon, the participants can gain their own experience on the cloud servers and on the second morning discuss questions and problems with the speaker and other participants.

The participation fee for the online workshop on May 9th and 10th, 2023 is 880 euros. The technical requirement for participation is a computer with an SSH client, webcam and microphone as well as basic knowledge of working on the command line. Further information on the event and details on how to register can be found on the heise events workshop page.


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