Building and maintaining complex distributed systems
June 19–20, 2017: Training
June 20–22, 2017: Tutorials & Conference
San Jose, CA

The over-under on container networking

Lee Calcote (SolarWinds)
3:40pm–4:20pm Wednesday, June 21, 2017
Level: Intermediate

Who is this presentation for?

  • Systems architects, network administrators, network engineers, and application developers

Prerequisite knowledge

  • A basic conceptual understanding of network bridge and network throughput
  • A working knowledge of the Docker command line

What you'll learn

  • Explore container specifications
  • Learn what to expect from different network drivers and networking provided by container orchestrators


Networking is an inherent component to any distributed application and one of the most complicated and expansive technologies central to microservices. With application developers busily adopting container technologies, the time has come for network engineers and operators to prepare for the unique challenges brought on by cloud-native applications.

Lee Calcote walks you through available container connectivity options, explaining their function and when they should be used and comparing their performance characteristics. Lee also explores the two container networking specifications, the Container Network Interface (CNI) and the Container Network Model (CNM), and shows how they’ve shaped different types of container connectivity.

Photo of Lee Calcote

Lee Calcote


Lee Calcote is the head of technology strategy at SolarWinds, where he stewards strategy and innovation across the business. Previously, he led software-defined data center engineering at Seagate, leveling up the systems portfolio by delivering new predictive analytics, telemetric, and modern management capabilities, and held leadership positions at Cisco, where he created Cisco’s cloud management platforms and pioneered new, automated remote management services. Lee advises a handful of startups and serves as a member of various industry bodies, including the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), the Distributed Management Task Foundation (DMTF), and the Center for Internet Security (CIS). As a Docker Captain and Cloud Native Ambassador, he is an organizer of technology conferences, an analyst, an author, and a speaker in the technology community. Lee holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science, a master’s degree in business administration from California State University, Fresno, and a number of industry certifications.