Docker Vs VM : Difference Between Docker and Virtual Machine

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Oct 09, 2023

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Docker Vs VM

Docker Vs VM, the containerization is the new technology which Docker is used for and became the default technology for the applications to run since it had many benefits and one of the most important advantage was the docker container provided seamless integration with any platform irrespective of the programming languages used, the OS used and infrastructure used. The docker is used extensively in the DevOps culture. In a container, all the necessary codes, libraries, and add-ons are packaged into one container for the applications to run irrespective of what platform the container is running on. It is a new technology that has got a great future. To learn more about the differences enroll in the DevOps online course.

On the other hand, Virtual Machines are still a little bit older than the containers or the Docker. Here the VM’s run on the hypervisor which is unique to multiple VM’s that is each guest OS and apps run on the hypervisor that supports multiple VM’s. The VM’s to run hypervisor is important and multiple VM’s sit on the hypervisor. Each VM shares the virtualized hardware that is the server hardware technology. The VMs, unlike containers, have a unique OS and bundled packaged software for the applications. VM’s use both the user space of the OS and the kernel space as well; this is the prime difference between the Dockers and the VM’s. This article lets us differentiate the Docker Vs VM’s. 

Docker Vs VM what is the difference?

Serial #ParametersDockerVirtual Machine
1Number of OSOneMultiple OS on the same machine
2DefinitionContainers are a set of processes isolated from the rest of the systems that run the applications.VM’s is virtualized hardware that runs on the hypervisor with its app and own guest OS.
3PortabilityHighly portableLess portable
4StabilityHighly stableLess stable
5UseBuilt for applications portabilityBuilt for single hardware running multiple OS
6OSIt is fixed to one type of OS for a single machine.Different applications can run any OS such as Windows, Linux, and others on the same machine.
7PlatformIt is platform-independentIt is hardware-independent
8ScalabilityLess scalableIt is highly scalable
9SpeedDepends on the hardware where it is deployedLess speed due to multiple OS on the same machine
10MigrationFewer codes are required to migrate the applicationsMore codes are required for the migration of the applications
11DeploymentRapid deploymentRequires more time for deployment
12GUI/Command lineUsed for command-line interface applicationsBoth command line and GUI are highly supported
13UpdatesUpdates are easy to be doneUpdates are not easy due to multiple OS standing on the hypervisor


VM’s are Virtual Machines that run on the hypervisor on a single parent OS. The VM’s share the OS with other hypervisors and other VM’s. The VM’s consist of the user space and the kernel space of the OS. That is the hardware and all the OS sitting on the hardware are virtualized. As shown in the figure above each VM has its guest OS and its unique applications sitting on top of the single hypervisor. The single hypervisor supports multiple VM’s. Thus in VM’s the entire guest OS is used for a particular application. Whereas in Docker the OS is shared between multiple Docker containers that are each container has a packaged single application. To know more, register for the DevOps training online. Every interview will contain Docker questions so be sure you are well prepared.

The VM shares the hardware resource from the host. Whereas in Docker the containers running share the host OS kernel. Docker is primarily used for developing, deploying, and managing applications that can run irrespective of the underlying hardware and platforms. Both of these technologies have some demerits and merits. 

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Let us differentiate the docker Vs Virtual Machine in terms of demerits and merits.

Advantages of Docker

Multiple containers containing each application can run on a single OS with the same hardware shared

Containers have advantages such as it is a platform, OS, and hardware-independent

It is easy to spin up apps on the fly

It has reduced the uses of the IT management resources

The snapshots are fewer than in VM’s or the applications that do not run on the containers

The security updates are easy for a single OS

Fewer codes are required to transfer, migrate and upload workloads.

Rapid deployments

Cost savings and great ROI.

Disadvantages of Docker

Since a single OS is used it consumes a lot of memory, CPU time, and speed

Data in the container is not having the scalable, automated, and efficient backup facility

Applications directly run on the bare metal server are faster and easier to maintain

Since the docker runs on a single OS the docker on the Windows OS cannot run in Linux OS and vice versa. 

For the applications with rich graphical interfaces, then Docker is not suitable.

Advantages of VM’s

Multiple VM’s can run on the single hypervisor.

VM’s have their own guest OS so that there can be any OS such as Windows and Linux run side by side on the same hypervisor.

You can design any type of application whether that runs by command line or rich graphical interfaces.

A single computer can run multiple OS.

Disadvantages of VM’s

Running more than one VM’s makes the system highly unstable

There is a compromise of speed and CPU time with multiple VM’s running on the same hardware.

Docker can be learned by taking up DevOps certification training online in a reputed institute and get certified in DevOps. You can also know about how Docker differs Kubernetes

What next? 

Now that you know the difference between Docker and VM’s it is necessary to learn more on these topics to know more so that you can use these technologies at your work and take your career to new heights.  Learn DevOps online which will enable you to differentiate between these technologies in real-life scenarios by DevOps Course at StarAgile institute.


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