Mirantis and Docker, Inc. announced today that the open source Lens integrated development environment (IDE) for Kubernetes is now integrated with the Docker Desktop tools used by millions of developers to build containerized applications.
Mirantis CEO Adrian Ionel says the integration of a Lens IDE with Docker Desktop will make it simpler for more advanced developers to employ an IDE to build those applications.
Lens was originally created by Kontena, which Mirantis acquired roughly a year after it bought the Docker Enterprise platform from Docker, Inc. in 2019.
Ionel says the integration with Docker Desktop will make it simpler for developers that have already installed Docker Desktop to add an IDE. It’s clear there is a need for a tool that gives developers more granular control over Kubernetes clusters without locking them into a specific K8s distribution, Ionel says.
Mirantis claims there are now more than 600,000 developers that use the Lens IDE. Docker, Inc. estimates there are 14 million developers using Docker Desktop. The integration between Docker Desktop and the Lens IDE is made possible by a standard set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that Docker, Inc. recently added. It’s also estimated that there are now more than 7.1 million cloud-native developers worldwide employing a distribution of Kubernetes.
In general, there’s a lot more focus on developer productivity as many of them are just starting to transition to building microservices-based applications using containers rather than legacy monolithic applications. In fact, at this point, most new application development is based on containers. Less clear is to what degree those containerized applications are making use of orchestration platforms such as Kubernetes. However, as Kubernetes’ ability to dynamically scale infrastructure resources both up and down becomes more apparent, more IT operations teams are requiring developers to build container applications that run on the open source orchestration platform.
The challenge, of course, is that as the number of dependencies between microservices continues to increase, the overall application environment can be challenging to maintain at scale. Container applications are more resilient than monolithic applications because whenever a microservice is not available, calls can be rerouted to other microservices. However, that rerouting typically results in degradation of application performance; it can be challenging to identify the root cause of an issue given all the dependencies that have been created. In many instances, an IDE such as Lens will make it simpler for developers to address those issues as they arise by providing more visibility into the Kubernetes cluster environment.
The degree to which developers—rather than an IT operations team—will manage Kubernetes will differ from one application to another. In some cases, developers are assuming responsibility for both the application and the underlying infrastructure. In other cases, developers prefer to focus their efforts on writing code rather than managing infrastructure. One way or another, however, the number of Kubernetes clusters that need to be managed continues to rapidly accelerate. The only thing left to determine is who will manage them and at what stage of the application development and deployment process.