A new version of Docker Enterprise Edition (EE) was announced today and is now available, with expanded features for running applications in a hybrid IT environment. The company describes Docker EE as the only Container-as-a-Service (CaaS) platform for managing and securing Windows, Linux, and mainframe apps across any infrastructure -- both on premises and in the cloud.

Docker says its updated Enterprise Edition is designed to help IT staff modernize their network infrastructure, while connecting disparate, legacy systems. The new version provides a container-management platform that unites Windows, Linux and mainframe apps in the same cluster, on a single platform. It includes customizable access-control tools for Bring Your Own (BYO) device environments, plus new features for managing the software supply chain, and support for IBM Z mainframe computers.

Banjot Chanana, Head of Product Management for Docker, claims Docker EE can help IT staff accelerate application delivery by 13x while reducing expenses by more than 50 percent.

Secure Multi-Tenancy for BYO Environments

The new release lets IT staff customize role-based user-access, setting both physical and logical boundaries for different users and teams sharing the same Docker EE environment. These enhancements allow teams to use a "bring your own" IT services model, where different teams rent their own nodes, multiple teams share resources, or a specific team is granted access to just a specific set of resources.

Obviously these types of features are most applicable for complex network setups -- for example, in organizations that need to onboard new lines of business, or incorporate shadow IT projects while preserving workflows and keeping application owners separate, across a shared environment.

The key is that different teams can be consolidated to use a single infrastructure securely, while maintaining separate physical and logical boundaries.

Policy Automation To Speed App Development

Another advantage of the new release is its ability to automate and accelerate the software supply chain, reducing errors as new applications are developed.

New features such as "automated image promotion" help managers define criteria that will eliminate mistakes when moving applications from the development stage into testing and production.

A new feature called "immutable repositories" will prevent image tags from being over-ridden when they have been promoted to production, ensuring that only the right and most recent images are running in production.

Docker is offering a free hosted trial of Docker Enterprise, which is now available. The company also offers a special program called Modernize Traditional Applications (MTA) for IT operations teams that need more help updating their legacy applications for a hybrid cloud environment.