Docker desktop announced charges to large companies, and netizens shouted: it's time to abandon it!

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In the eight years since the birth of container engine docker, it and open source container choreographer kubernetes jointly promoted the application of container technology in the field of cloud computing, and also attracted extensive attention all over the world. It can be said that eight out of ten programmers who have worked in cloud computing development have learned docker technology.

However, recently, docker officially announced a new action, that is, the product subscription is divided into individual, professional, team and commercial versions. For the reason for this, the official said that it provides the scale, security and trusted content required by the business for the productivity and cooperation that developers rely on, so as to provide services for docker in a sustainable way.

In many software, it is normal to provide different versions for different user groups, but in the face of docker's adjustment, many users believe that this will restrict individuals or small enterprises from using the free version of docker desktop, and introduce more expensive subscription services when looking for a sustainable business model.
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Docker personal version = free

The previous docker free subscription option is now changed to personal subscription option. First of all, from its positioning, it is also clear that docker will still provide a free version, which is mainly open to open source communities, individual developers, education and small enterprises, and these people are expected to account for more than half of docker users. Meanwhile, docker cli, docker compose, docker build / buildkit, docker engine, docker desktop, docker hub, docker official image and other components will still be provided for free in docker personal version.

Of course, it is worth mentioning that small businesses here must have less than 250 employees and an annual income of less than $10 million before they can use the free docker version.

Docker business will charge $21 per user per month!

If companies with more than 250 employees or an annual income of more than $10 million want to use docker desktop, they must use paid subscriptions. There are three types of paid Subscriptions: pro, team and business.

Among them, Pro is $5 per month and team is $7 per month, which is not much different from the past.

In addition to the above, docker officially launched a new product to subscribe to docker business, which is suitable for organizations that use docker for application development on a large scale and need security software supply chain management, single sign on (SSO), container registry access control and other functions.

In terms of price, the new docker business charges us $21 per user per month.

In terms of functions, specifically, the new docker business subscription can provide better management and security for enterprises using docker for large-scale software development. With the easy-to-use SaaS based management page, developers and leaders can now effectively observe and manage all docker development environments and accelerate their security software supply chain plans.

In addition, docker business provides more functions than the two subscription versions of pro and team. For example, it adds the function of controlling which container images developers can access from the docker hub to ensure that the team can only use trusted content for security construction from the beginning. Soon, docker business will also provide SAML sso, which can control the registry that developers can access and the ability to remotely manage docker desktop instances.

Is docker desktop charging reasonable?

In fact, the docker platform has many components, but the docker desktop is only a part of them.

As a GUI tool, docker desktop is used to manage various docker components and functions, including containers, images, data volumes, local kubernetes, development environment in containers, etc. Most docker components can be used on windows, MAC and Linux platforms. Although most docker containers run on Linux, the adjustments made by docker desktop are only applicable to windows and MAC.

Scott Johnston, CEO of docker, also came forward to explain the change in the subscription mode of docker desktop. On the one hand, he hopes to solve the security challenges existing in the software supply chain. On the other hand, facing the rapid change that global developers will increase to 45 million by 2030, docker also needs to develop a feasible business model.

It is reported that the effective date of these terms is August 31, 2021. However, for users who need a paid subscription to use docker desktop, docker officials also provide a grace period for users to transition. The specific time is until January 31, 2022.

So how much impact does this have on users? According to the official report of docker, 55% of professional developers around the world are using docker technology, of which individual developers and small enterprises account for half, which also means that most docker users can still use it for free. However, Scott Johnston also revealed that previously subscribed users still accounted for less than 10% of the total usage of docker.

Therefore, the current adjustment will also have a certain impact on many enterprises. For such changes, many netizens also have a sense of being discouraged:

  • I look forward to the emergence of open source alternatives and the replacement of docker;

  • This is likely to kill docker;

  • Goodbye docker desktop. I think many enterprises with more than 250 employees will do the same thing in the future;

reference resources:
https://www.docker.com/blog/updating-product-subscriptions/
https://www.theregister.com/2021/08/31/docker_ desktop_ no_ longer_ free/

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