Revealing two causes to celebrate on the same day, Docker announced both the launch of Docker Hub Enterprise and a partnership that will bring IBM's SoftLayer servers support.

Docker has already been embraced by the likes of Microsoft and Amazon, with the startup's hubs enjoying support from Azure and Amazon Web Services. The Docker Hub Enterprise (DHE) software enables developers to encapsulate cloud applications into modules that can be picked up and plopped down onto whatever server they please.

The DHE expands on the core product by allowing developers to collaborate on Docker images, along with the ability to pause and play the movement of the packages.

Docker says DHE has been refreshed with tools to enable the rapid installation and GUI configuration of its images. The software has been reworked to deliver increased server availability and the ability to horizontally scale "dockerized" applications.

The DHE is Docker's foundation for establishing relationships with its expanding enterprise customer base. That base, the vendor says, views the Docker open platform as a cornerstone for a distributed application strategy.

Ben Golub, CEO of Docker, says Docker's enterprise customers have been looking for a "behind-the-firewall" product that facilitates more dynamism in development and makes better use of their existing ecosystem.

"Our vision for DHE is that it will evolve from the place to share and collaborate on distributed applications to a strategic control point for both developers and sysadmins to manage all aspects of the application development life cycle -- from build through production -- on any infrastructure they choose," says Golub.

For IBM, the partnership is providing the "de facto building blocks" for packaging apps in consistent containers and now the process has been improved with the enterprise tools needed to be trusted both on- and off-premise, according to Angel Diaz, IBM's vice president of Open Technology and Cloud Performance Solutions.

"IBM Containers service running Docker containers on SoftLayer's bare metal servers provides improved performance over traditional approaches," says Diaz. "[This] strategic partnership between IBM and Docker is the first of its kind to provide enterprises with integrated tools and services they need to automate application deployment across the public cloud and on-premise cloud centers."

IBM will deliver DHE as part of Bluemix, its open-standards, cloud development platform for building, managing, and running apps.

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