Docker is the king of devops tools, hybrid cloud is beating public-only and private-only clouds, and Microsoft Azure is making sizable headway in public cloud.
Those are some of the key insights from this year's edition of SaaS provider RightScale's State of the Cloud report, which is derived from a survey of more than 1,000 IT pros around the world.
Docker keeps climbing -- and here comes Kubernetes
If there's one devops tool that's out in front with cloud-conscious companies, it's Docker. Thirty-five percent of respondents were already using it, and 32 percent had plans to do so. These numbers outstripped those of Chef, Puppet, Ansible, Salt, Mesosphere, and Rancher.
The other technologies are in use, but it's clear Docker has become the leader in this area. In enterprises, Docker racks up even higher scores (40 percent using, 30 percent planning), and almost 35 percent of all Docker users run some kind of container-as-a-service offering, chiefly AWS ECS.
Kubernetes gets around half of Docker's numbers (14 percent using, 22 percent planning), but RightScale noted the container orchestration system showed the strongest gains year over year versus other such tools, likely because Kubernetes has been embraced as the standard for building new kinds of clustered infrastructure.
Private cloud adoption is dipping slightly
One key trend RightScale's tracked over 2014, 2015, and 2016 has been the use of private cloud through OpenStack, VMware, and related products. This time around, while private cloud adoption hasn't fallen off a cliff, it's edged down: 72 percent of respondents this year run a private cloud, versus 77 percent last year and 63 percent the prior year. Hybrid cloud has shown a similar trajectory of 67 percent in 2017, 71 percent in 2016, and 58 percent in 2015.
What remains solid is the share of enterprises that use multiple clouds (85 percent) and for which multicloud means hybrid (58 percent). Those who use only one or more private clouds are a dwindling minority; those who use multiple public clouds have the second-biggest share (20 percent).
In short, the private cloud isn't dissipating, but it's now combined with public clouds, plural, for the best results.
Azure's making inroads, but AWS isn't going anywhere
Make no mistake: AWS is cloud king, and it'll safely remain that way for a long time. But Microsoft Azure has made remarkable amount of progress in the last year. In 2016, only 20 percent of respondents were running apps there; this year, it's 34 percent. With enterprise users specifically, the growth was even more dramatic, from 26 percent to 43 percent.
Azure's growth isn't coming at the expense of business from other cloud providers. Oracle Cloud and DigitalOcean, the two decliners on the list, didn't have enough business to lose in the first place to constitute Azure's jump: respectively, 4 and 5 percent in 2016, and 3 and 2 percent this year.
Again, AWS isn't budging, and its slice of the public cloud pie remains the biggest. While that number has also remained largely static over the last year, RightScale seems certain Amazon will continue to find ways to wring new revenue out of it, noting that "while the percentage of companies running at least one application in AWS is flat, the number of applications and VMs they are running is increasing, thereby driving increased revenue for AWS."