While containers as a concept have been around for some time, Docker, an open source project launched in 2013, helped popularize the technology, and has helped drive the trend towards containerization and microservices in software development that has come to be known as cloud-native development.

Learn how to get started with Kubernetes.

One solution to this problem has been virtual machines, which keep applications on the same hardware entirely separate, and reduce conflicts among software components and competition for hardware resources to a minimum.

Containers provide a highly efficient and highly granular mechanism for combining software components into the kinds of application and service stacks needed in a modern enterprise, and for keeping those software components updated and maintained.

A Dockerfile is a text file written in an easy-to-understand syntax that includes the instructions to build a Docker image (more on that in a moment).

Codefresh offers a look at how to build an image in more detail.

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