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Docker Cloud vs Rancher: What are the differences?

What is Docker Cloud? A hosted service for Docker container management and deployment. Docker Cloud is the best way to deploy and manage Dockerized applications. Docker Cloud makes it easy for new Docker users to manage and deploy the full spectrum of applications, from single container apps to distributed microservices stacks, to any cloud or on-premises infrastructure.

What is Rancher? Open Source Platform for Running a Private Container Service. Rancher is an open source container management platform that includes full distributions of Kubernetes, Apache Mesos and Docker Swarm, and makes it simple to operate container clusters on any cloud or infrastructure platform.

Docker Cloud can be classified as a tool in the "Containers as a Service" category, while Rancher is grouped under "Container Tools".

Some of the features offered by Docker Cloud are:

  • Simplify Docker Provisioning
  • Deploy Apps Anywhere
  • Automate Your Developer Workflows

On the other hand, Rancher provides the following key features:

  • Manage Hosts, Deploy Containers, Monitor Resources
  • User Management & Collaboration
  • Native Docker APIs & Tools

"Easy to use" is the primary reason why developers consider Docker Cloud over the competitors, whereas "Easy to use" was stated as the key factor in picking Rancher.

Rancher is an open source tool with 11.8K GitHub stars and 1.31K GitHub forks. Here's a link to Rancher's open source repository on GitHub.

Packet, Redox Engine, and VCCloud are some of the popular companies that use Rancher, whereas Docker Cloud is used by DNT, Firecracker, and MetricAid. Rancher has a broader approval, being mentioned in 88 company stacks & 35 developers stacks; compared to Docker Cloud, which is listed in 21 company stacks and 6 developer stacks.

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What is Docker Cloud?

Docker Cloud is the best way to deploy and manage Dockerized applications. Docker Cloud makes it easy for new Docker users to manage and deploy the full spectrum of applications, from single container apps to distributed microservices stacks, to any cloud or on-premises infrastructure.

What is Rancher?

Rancher is an open source container management platform that includes full distributions of Kubernetes, Apache Mesos and Docker Swarm, and makes it simple to operate container clusters on any cloud or infrastructure platform.
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    What are some alternatives to Docker Cloud and Rancher?
    Cloud Foundry
    Cloud Foundry is an open platform as a service (PaaS) that provides a choice of clouds, developer frameworks, and application services. Cloud Foundry makes it faster and easier to build, test, deploy, and scale applications.
    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.
    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.
    Docker Hub
    It is the world's easiest way to create, manage, and deliver your teams' container applications. It is the perfect home for your teams' applications.
    Amazon EC2 Container Service
    Amazon EC2 Container Service lets you launch and stop container-enabled applications with simple API calls, allows you to query the state of your cluster from a centralized service, and gives you access to many familiar Amazon EC2 features like security groups, EBS volumes and IAM roles.
    See all alternatives
    Decisions about Docker Cloud and Rancher
    No stack decisions found
    Interest over time
    Reviews of Docker Cloud and Rancher
    Avatar of gonuts
    Michigan Technological University
    Review ofRancherRancher
    1. Consume too much unnecessary resource by just running rancher agent alone;
    2. Hard to recover from system failure
    3. Bad performance of load balancing (compare to dokcer swarm built-in LB or others).
    How developers use Docker Cloud and Rancher
    Avatar of etlweather
    etlweather uses RancherRancher

    The whole infrastructure is managed through Rancher. It provides a simple interface to all the underlying tools - Docker, HAProxy (automatically configures load balancer from the containers).

    Avatar of Bringhub
    Bringhub uses Docker CloudDocker Cloud

    We decided to leverage Docker Cloud for our public facing APIs. This allows us to cleanly scale our nodes & containers without being vendor locked to a specific PaaS.

    Avatar of Dynamictivity
    Dynamictivity uses Docker CloudDocker Cloud

    We use Docker Cloud to manage all of our application deployments in an automated, repeatable and consistent fashion.

    Avatar of sapslaj
    sapslaj uses RancherRancher

    Currently looking to move to Swarm or Kubernetes due to a few issues I have with Rancher.

    Avatar of Ataccama
    Ataccama uses RancherRancher

    Orchestration of containers for our environments. Remote deployment from Jenkins.

    Avatar of InsideSales.com
    InsideSales.com uses RancherRancher

    We use Rancher for container orchestration and automated deployment pipelines.

    Avatar of Dave Woolfenden
    Dave Woolfenden uses RancherRancher

    Enterprise-grade Kubernetes Distribution

    How much does Docker Cloud cost?
    How much does Rancher cost?
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