While many of us stayed at home for most of 2021, Podman continued traveling the globe and even went to space. In just the first 10 months of 2021, 153 authors from all over the world contributed over 2,200 pull requests and closed over 1,600 issues in the Podman repository. This doesn't include all the contributions to Buildah, Skopeo, and the containers/image and containers/storage libraries that we maintain.
Containers remain a Linux concept, and the community has continued pushing the boundaries in kernel space and userspace. Starting with Linux 5.13, the kernel allows for using the overlay filesystem as a rootless user, bringing significant performance improvements for Podman and Buildah. Another long-anticipated feature achieved was running Podman in a nested environment, such as CI/CD pipelines or Kubernetes.
Podman has supported running Kubernetes deployments since its early days. The declarative nature of the Kubernetes YAML in conjunction with Podman bridges the gap between running and testing workloads locally and in an orchestrated Kubernetes environment.
Another widely used declarative way of deploying containerized workloads is
docker-compose. The community has worked hard and happily on supporting
docker-compose since the release of Podman 3.0, with the added advantage of running it as an ordinary user without root privileges.
Without a doubt, the biggest feature release of 2021 was running Podman on the Mac, including the new M1s. Many of our users love the machines with the fruit logo, and improving their experience was a top priority for us. Starting with Podman 3.4, running containers on Macs is two simple commands away:
podman machine init and
podman machine start. These commands download and start a Fedora CoreOS VM and allow the Mac client to communicate with the local Linux VM.
I could go on for hours about all the great work the community accomplished in 2021 and why I think Podman is such a great tool for developers and sysadmins alike. But instead, I suggest having a look at the top 10 Podman articles on Enable Sysadmin below. And if these remind you of a topic you're passionate about, join our community and continue the tradition of knowledge sharing that makes the Linux ecosystem great.
Stay safe, take care, and I'll see you all next year!