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Consul
Consul

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Docker Swarm
Docker Swarm

427
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Consul vs Docker Swarm: What are the differences?

Developers describe Consul as "A tool for service discovery, monitoring and configuration". Consul is a tool for service discovery and configuration. Consul is distributed, highly available, and extremely scalable. On the other hand, Docker Swarm is detailed as "Native clustering for Docker. Turn a pool of Docker hosts into a single, virtual host". Swarm serves the standard Docker API, so any tool which already communicates with a Docker daemon can use Swarm to transparently scale to multiple hosts: Dokku, Compose, Krane, Deis, DockerUI, Shipyard, Drone, Jenkins... and, of course, the Docker client itself.

Consul can be classified as a tool in the "Open Source Service Discovery" category, while Docker Swarm is grouped under "Container Tools".

"Great service discovery infrastructure" is the primary reason why developers consider Consul over the competitors, whereas "Docker friendly" was stated as the key factor in picking Docker Swarm.

Consul and Docker Swarm are both open source tools. Consul with 16.2K GitHub stars and 2.82K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than Docker Swarm with 5.61K GitHub stars and 1.11K GitHub forks.

Slack, SendGrid, and Oscar Health are some of the popular companies that use Consul, whereas Docker Swarm is used by Bugsnag, Docker, and Dial Once. Consul has a broader approval, being mentioned in 131 company stacks & 52 developers stacks; compared to Docker Swarm, which is listed in 80 company stacks and 38 developer stacks.

What is Consul?

Consul is a tool for service discovery and configuration. Consul is distributed, highly available, and extremely scalable.

What is Docker Swarm?

Swarm serves the standard Docker API, so any tool which already communicates with a Docker daemon can use Swarm to transparently scale to multiple hosts: Dokku, Compose, Krane, Deis, DockerUI, Shipyard, Drone, Jenkins... and, of course, the Docker client itself.
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Why do developers choose Consul?
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    What are some alternatives to Consul and Docker Swarm?
    etcd
    etcd is a distributed key value store that provides a reliable way to store data across a cluster of machines. It’s open-source and available on GitHub. etcd gracefully handles master elections during network partitions and will tolerate machine failure, including the master.
    Zookeeper
    A centralized service for maintaining configuration information, naming, providing distributed synchronization, and providing group services. All of these kinds of services are used in some form or another by distributed applications.
    SkyDNS
    SkyDNS is a distributed service for announcement and discovery of services. It leverages Raft for high-availability and consensus, and utilizes DNS queries to discover available services. This is done by leveraging SRV records in DNS, with special meaning given to subdomains, priorities and weights (more info here: http://blog.gopheracademy.com/skydns).
    Ambassador
    Map services to arbitrary URLs in a single, declarative YAML file. Configure routes with CORS support, circuit breakers, timeouts, and more. Replace your Kubernetes ingress controller. Route gRPC, WebSockets, or HTTP.
    Kubernetes
    Kubernetes is an open source orchestration system for Docker containers. It handles scheduling onto nodes in a compute cluster and actively manages workloads to ensure that their state matches the users declared intentions.
    See all alternatives
    Decisions about Consul and Docker Swarm
    Yshay Yaacobi
    Yshay Yaacobi
    Software Engineer · | 27 upvotes · 279.9K views
    atSolutoSoluto
    Docker Swarm
    Docker Swarm
    Kubernetes
    Kubernetes
    Visual Studio Code
    Visual Studio Code
    Go
    Go
    TypeScript
    TypeScript
    JavaScript
    JavaScript
    C#
    C#
    F#
    F#
    .NET
    .NET

    Our first experience with .NET core was when we developed our OSS feature management platform - Tweek (https://github.com/soluto/tweek). We wanted to create a solution that is able to run anywhere (super important for OSS), has excellent performance characteristics and can fit in a multi-container architecture. We decided to implement our rule engine processor in F# , our main service was implemented in C# and other components were built using JavaScript / TypeScript and Go.

    Visual Studio Code worked really well for us as well, it worked well with all our polyglot services and the .Net core integration had great cross-platform developer experience (to be fair, F# was a bit trickier) - actually, each of our team members used a different OS (Ubuntu, macos, windows). Our production deployment ran for a time on Docker Swarm until we've decided to adopt Kubernetes with almost seamless migration process.

    After our positive experience of running .Net core workloads in containers and developing Tweek's .Net services on non-windows machines, C# had gained back some of its popularity (originally lost to Node.js), and other teams have been using it for developing microservices, k8s sidecars (like https://github.com/Soluto/airbag), cli tools, serverless functions and other projects...

    See more
    Interest over time
    Reviews of Consul and Docker Swarm
    No reviews found
    How developers use Consul and Docker Swarm
    Avatar of Chris Hartwig
    Chris Hartwig uses ConsulConsul

    All our services use Consul for discovery, configuration and cluster management (auto scaling, health monitoring, dynamic reconfiguration, leader elections)

    Avatar of Tom Staijen
    Tom Staijen uses ConsulConsul

    Discovery service. Some configuration is stored in consul.

    Avatar of Robert Hao
    Robert Hao uses ConsulConsul

    I used Consul as config center & service discoverer.

    Avatar of Ismael Arenzana
    Ismael Arenzana uses ConsulConsul

    How else do you discover microservices? ;)

    Avatar of exana
    exana uses ConsulConsul

    For service discovery.

    How much does Consul cost?
    How much does Docker Swarm cost?
    Pricing unavailable
    Pricing unavailable