docker rm Ben Golub

docker run Steve Singh # Chairman takes over as CEO


Easy-to-use container pioneer Docker on Tuesday installed a new chief executive, swapping Ben Golub for Steve Singh, the co-founder and former CEO of travel expense biz Concur, now owned by SAP.

In a high-paying version of musical chairs, Singh, who joined Docker's board of directors in November, has become CEO and chairman of Docker's board. Golub, meanwhile, has stepped down as the company's leader to take a board of directors seat.

The move was oddly enough not, amid the Moby rebrand confusion, announced at DockerCon last month. However, the change has enterprise written all over it, starting with Docker founder and CTO Solomon Hykes' endorsement.

Citing Docker's traction in the developer community and enterprise market, Hykes in a statement offered the obligatory acknowledgement of Golub's work building Docker up and moved on to celebrate Singh's supposed salutary effect on sales.

"With Steve's unique expertise, we will build an organization capable of delivering on that demand, and serving our customers across the globe," said Hykes.

Dave Bartoletti, an analyst with research consultancy Forrester, in a phone interview with The Register expressed sympathy for Singh. "The poor guy has to figure out how to make money at Docker," he said.

Bartoletti observed that it's not easy for companies with roots in open source to make the transition to enterprise sales. "A lot of people in the community just bristle at anyone trying to make money," he said.

Nonetheless, Golub's valedictory blog post echoes Hykes' remarks, hinting that Docker will seek enterprise revenue by highlighting Singh's experience leading large companies and Docker's growing list of enterprise customers.

Really early stages

Bartoletti, however, observed that Forrester's data indicates that only 10 per cent of organizations with more than 1,000 employees are using containers in production. "We are really early in production deployment," he said.

The enterprise market represents Docker's possible path to profitability, but the company's behavior until recently placed product development ahead of the stability and hand-holding so beloved in the world of corporate IT. Docker's API changed frequently. Its support window was short. And the Docker Hub registry in the past was often cited for being too unreliable for production usage.

Such instability represents the price of innovation – at least that's how Docker spun it. But now Docker is staging a revival of Facebook's moment of maturation, when the social network, to undo developer alienation, traded its mantra "move fast and break things" for "move fast with stable infrastructure."

"'Move fast with stable infrastructure' means move slow to most people," said Bartoletti. "I do think Docker needs to slow down the rate of science projects and new communities they're launching to focus on blocking and tackling."

The foot dragging has already begun. Docker made its enterprise ambitions clear in March with the release of Docker Enterprise Edition, which gets updates at a more manageable pace than Docker Community Edition, and with the debut of its technology certification program.

But it doesn't necessarily follow that Docker will be as popular with enterprises as it has been with the open source community and early adopters.

"People want to use containers in the public cloud and they are going to have a lot of options," said Bartoletti. "I'm not sure people will take the whole Docker stack to Amazon or Google. That's where they have to win." ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Lunar rocks brought to Earth by China's Chang'e 5 show Moon's volcanoes were recently* active

    * Just a couple of billion years

    The Moon remained volcanically active much later than previously thought, judging from fragments of rocks dating back two billion years that were collected by China's Chang’e 5 spacecraft.

    The Middle Kingdom's space agency obtained about 1.72 kilograms (3.8 pounds) of lunar material from its probe that returned to Earth from the Moon in December. These samples gave scientists their first chance to get their hands on fresh Moon material in the 40 years since the Soviet Union's Luna 24 mission brought 170 grams (six ounces) of regolith to our home world in 1976.

    The 47 shards of basalt rocks retrieved by Chang'e 5 were estimated to be around two billion years old using radiometric dating techniques. The relatively young age means that the Moon was still volcanically active up to 900 million years later than previous estimates, according to a team of researchers led by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).

    Continue reading
  • Centre for Computing History apologises to customers for 'embarrassing' breach

    Website patched following phishing scam, no financial data exposed

    The Centre for Computing History (CCH) in Cambridge, England, has apologised for an "embarrassing" breach in its online customer datafile, though thankfully no payment card information was exposed.

    The museum for computers and video games said it was notified that a unique email address used to book tickets via its website "has subsequently received a phishing email that looked like it came from HSBC."

    "Our investigation has revealed that our online customer datafile has been compromised and the email addresses contained within are now in the hands of spammers," says the letter to visitors from Jason Fitzpatrick, CEO and trustee at CCH dated 19 October.

    Continue reading
  • Ancient with a dash of modern: We joined the Royal Navy to find there's little new in naval navigation

    Following the Fleet Navigating Officers' course

    Boatnotes II The art of not driving your warship into the coast or the seabed is a curious blend of the ancient and the very modern, as The Reg discovered while observing the Royal Navy's Fleet Navigating Officers' (FNO) course.

    Held aboard HMS Severn, "sea week" of the FNO course involves taking students fresh from classroom training and putting them on the bridge of a real live ship – and then watching them navigate through progressively harder real-life challenges.

    "It's about finding where the students' capacity limit is," FNO instructor Lieutenant Commander Mark Raeburn told The Register. Safety comes first: the Navy isn't interested in having navigators who can't keep up with the pressures and volume of information during pilotage close to shore – or near enemy minefields.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021