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Open Container Initiative Establishes Technical Governance, Announces New Members

By 12/07/20158月 22nd, 2017Press Release

SAN FRANCISCO – December 8, 2015The Open Container Initiative (OCI), represented by a broad coalition of industry leaders focused on common standards for software containers, is today announcing its formalized technical governance structure to advance its mission while welcoming founding and new members.

The intent to form the OCI was announced earlier this year with the goal to host an open source, technical community and build a vendor-neutral, portable and open specification and runtime for container-based solutions. The OCI is a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project. Founding members, including nine new companies committed to the OCI include: Amazon Web Services, Apcera, Apprenda, AT&T, ClusterHQ, Cisco, CoreOS, Datera, Dell, Docker, EMC, Fujitsu Limited, Goldman Sachs, Google, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huawei, IBM, Infoblox, Intel, Joyent, Kismatic, Kyup, Mesosphere, Microsoft, Midokura, Nutanix, Odin, Oracle, Pivotal, Polyverse, Portworx, Rancher Labs, Red Hat,, Scalock, Sysdig, SUSE, Twistlock, Twitter, Univa, Verizon Wireless, VMware and Weaveworks.

The OCI follows an open governance model that guides the project’s technical roadmap, currently available on GitHub. Under this model, any developer or end user can make contributions to the OCI. A Technical Developer Community (TDC) has been formed for the project and includes independent maintainers as well as maintainers from founding members including Docker, CoreOS, Google and Huawei. The TDC is responsible for maintaining the project and handling the releases of both the runtime and specification. A Technical Oversight Board (TOB) will be appointed by the members of the OCI and the TDC. The TOB will work closely with the TDC to ensure cross-project consistencies and workflows. The governance model also includes a Trademark Board to oversee the development and use of the OCI’s trademarks and certifications.

As part of the original formation of the OCI in June of this year, Docker has donated both a draft specification for the base format and runtime and the code associated with a reference implementation of that specification. Since the OCI’s inception, there have been two releases of the specification and six releases of runc. Docker will be integrating the latest version of runc into future releases of Docker and Cloud Foundry has implemented runc as part of its Garden project.

Today’s enterprises demand portable, agile and interoperable developer and sysadmin tools. Container technologies give developers and users the ability to fully commit to container technologies without worrying their current choice of infrastructure, cloud provider or DevOps tool will create technology lock-in. Instead, choices can be guided by best-of-breed tools for building and managing business-critical applications. Containers also provide a complementary solution to virtualization technologies, providing a new level of customizability and scalability for IT operations. The OCI community’s work enables users and companies to innovate and develop with confidence, reducing fragmentation or interoperability issues.

Members of the OCI will collaborate to ensure the technical work aligns with the following values:

  • Composable: all tools for downloading, installing and running containers should be well integrated but independent.

  • Portable: the runtime standard should be usable across different hardware, operating systems and cloud environments.

  • Secure: isolation should be pluggable, and the cryptographic primitives for strong trust, image auditing and application identity should be solid.

  • Decentralized: discovery of container images should be simple and facilitate a federated namespace and distributed retrieval.

  • Open: the format and runtime will be well specified and developed by a community to ensure code development drives specification development.

  • Minimalist: The OCI Specifications aim for simplicity, to ensure stability, optimize innovation and encourage experimentation.

  • Backward compatible: OCI Specifications and OCI Projects strive to be as backward compatible as possible with prior releases.

“Collaborative development continues to prove its ability to transform markets and advance emerging technologies. The OCI is a welcome addition to The Linux Foundation Collaborative Project ecosystem,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director, The Linux Foundation. “This level of industry support illustrates the prevalence of container technologies across IT infrastructures, much in the way we saw with virtualization 10 years ago. I’m very excited to support the work of this community.”

For more information, visit:

The Open Container Initiative is a Linux Foundation Collaborative Project. Founded in 2000, The Linux Foundation today provides tools, training and events to scale any open source project, which together deliver an economic impact not achievable by any one company. More information can be found at

About the Open Container Initiative (OCI)
The Open Container Initiative is an open governance structure for the express purpose of creating open industry standards around container formats and runtime. Projects associated to the Open Container Initiative can be found at Contact the project maintainers on IRC at #opencontainers. Contact the Linux Foundation about the OCI at

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