Jenkins vs. Docker: Major Differences and Similarities

Software is eating the world

Marc Andreessen founder of Netscape


The world’s industries, organizations, businesses, and other institutions run on software, literally. Software adoption has increased tremendously over the years as software development evolves to new dimensions. Advancements in technology landed software development to DevOps which soon became the focus.

With DevOps came several tools like Kubernetes, Jenkins, Docker, and more, each with unique features in their offerings. DevOps is still growing and is here to stay. It may be going mainstream in the near future and taking up Docker, Kubernetes, and Jenkins training by Simplilearn among others should be top of any developer’s list of priorities.

How is DevOps growing

In 2017, the DevOps market was worth $2.9 billion and was expected to grow to $ 6.6 billion by 2022. This growth has been fueled by advancements in technology.

4 key trends shaping the DevOps market include:

#1. DevOps automation

Automation syncs all the tools in the CI/CD pipeline together on one platform to keep it running efficiently ultimately yielding faster accurate deployments.

With the integration of AIOps (Artificial intelligence for IT operations) into DevOps, end-to-end automation of the DevOps lifecycle is achievable and predictable. This has the advantage of delivering real-time insight into the production environment and makes it easy to detect changes in the production pipeline and automatically have them fixed.

#2. 5G is changing the game

5G internet is being rolled out and it is believed that it will have the biggest impact on IoT. With up to 10GB/s speeds and a capacity to support up to 100 billion devices, deploying complex applications on devices will no longer be a challenge. The effect here is a sharp increase in the number of connected devices which is a key growth factor in software development.

#3. Data-driven operations

Where more devices are being connected, there arises the need for faster frequent deployments which in turn leads to the generation of higher volumes of data. This trend has shifted the operations of businesses to becoming data-driven hence the emergence of DataOps.

DataOps technology brings together DevOps with data scientists and engineers. It integrates the principle of agility in data analytics which improves systems and processes for data teams to work more collaboratively and be more efficient. As the focus on data continues, data-as-a-service (DaaS) will soon become an important offering for businesses.

#4. DevOps skills uptake

Both training providers and organizations have not been left behind in equipping professionals with DevOps skills. New technologies are constantly emerging and organization skill requirements keep changing. For this reason, upskilling and cross-skilling is preferred more than hiring.

Owing to this, training is taking place within organizations. Learning institutions are in turn repackaging their product offerings to attract corporate clients. Additionally, in a bid to promote continuous learning, organizations are strengthening their learning and development and integrating it into the overall business structure.

Top DevOps tools

DevOps tools embody the tools, processes, systems, applications, and infrastructure that support the implementation of DevOps in an organization. Each DevOps tool is built to serve a specific purpose through the different development phases. Categories of tools include configuration management tools like Puppet, collaboration tools like Slack, and continuous integration tools like Jenkins.

Here are 10 top DevOps tools:

#1. Slack, effective collaboration

Slack integrates various development apps to offer visibility and transparency through the CI/CD pipeline. This helps to monitor the status of the deployed code end-to-end and promotes collaboration.

#2. GitHub, code hosting and review

GitHub provides hosting for software development version control and source code management using Git.

#3. Jenkins, continuous integration

An open-source continuous integration tool used to automate the building, testing, and deployment phases of software development.

#4. Selenium – Test automation

Selenium is a browser-based automation testing tool used for testing web applications.

#5. Chef, automation and configuration management

A configuration management tool used to automate the management and control infrastructure and applications.

#6. BMC Release Process Management, continuous deployment

BMC RPM (Release Process Management) tool allows users to deploy changes to business applications in a synchronized and coordinated way ultimately promoting frequent, low-cost, and accurate deployments.

#7. Nagios, infrastructure and application monitoring

An open-source continuous monitoring tool used for monitoring the infrastructure, network, applications, systems, and processes in a DevOps environment.

#8. Docker, containerization and provisioning

A DevOps platform that allows developers to develop and deploy applications and then ship them in containerized packages along with all the dependencies they require to operate.

#9. Kubernetes, orchestration

An open-source container orchestration system for building, distributing, and running docker containers.

#10. Git -version control tool

An open-source distributed version control tool used for tracking source code changes through the software development process. It is also used for coordinating workflows to enhance speed and efficiency.

Jenkins vs Docker

Docker is an enterprise container platform that allows developers to develop and ship applications securely in containers together with all the parts needed for the application to run including its libraries, configurations, source code, and other dependencies. Containerization makes it possible for the application to run efficiently on machines other than the Linux machine it was built on. Docker is open-source.

Jenkins on the other hand is a continuous integration server. It is built with Java programming language and more than 1,000 plugins to facilitate automation for the development, testing, and deployment processes of the software. This tool is open-source and enjoys great community support.

Differences between Jenkins and Docker:

  • Function. Docker builds and runs containers in which applications are shared while Jenkins provides an interface for efficiently managing the CI/CD pipeline. Jenkins automates the continuous testing process of an application through the development pipeline.
  • Operation. Jenkins is implemented on a CI pipeline for purposes of automating the development process of an application. Docker is an OS-level platform that creates containers and ships them through the Docker engine, a client-server application. Docker supports Linux and Windows operating systems.
  • Maintenance. Jenkins requires little maintenance and updates easily through its inbuilt GUI. While Docker needs some maintenance, this is easy. Each application is shipped in its own container thus reducing application dependencies issues plus Docker consumes very little computing resources.
  • Features. Jenkins is a scalable automated platform with numerous plugins that make it easy to build and test software continuously. Docker is easily scalable because it is lightweight and highly secure.
  • Programming language. Jenkins is built with Java programming language and Docker Google’s Go language.


  • Both Docker and Jenkins are open-source DevOps tools. This allows users to contribute to and improve their features. This way, they both enjoy great community support.
  • Both Docker and Jenkins can be installed easily and work with Windows OS.


Docker and Jenkins are two DevOps tools with different applications. Using them together in a development environment will improve speed, efficiency, and standardize your CI/CD delivery process. While Jenkins will build and deploy your applications through the development pipeline, Docker will ship these applications in containers. Jenkins will also be functional for building Docker images and deploying them on the Docker registry.

To do this effectively as a developer, you need to be familiar with both Docker and Jenkins’s features and applications. Training in both will not only equip you for the task but also set you on course to gain experience. Consider enrolling for a Jenkins certification course with a trusted training provider.

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