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Adam Gordon Bell

Adam Gordon Bell earthly.dev

Containers are chroot with a marketing budget

Adam Gordon Bell:

There are many ways to understand how containers work, but most useful explanations are actually simplifications….

But for me, containers are just chrooted processes. Sure, they are more than that: Containers have a nice developer experience, an open-source foundation, and a whole ecosystem of cloud-native companies pushing them forward. But, let me show you why I think chroot is the key.

I like this framing. It makes a lot of sense to me. More than ‘lightweight VM’, which is how I’ve thought about them previously. The rest of this article is Adam stepping through the process of building a container runtime using only the chroot system call.

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