Free Webapp Hosting for Average Users
The goal of the project is to allow average, tech-oriented user to run their own server applications, without worrying about maintaining a server. The ultimate aim is to achieve greater decentralization of federated services, such as social networking, file sharing, blog or email, on the net.
While many people are looking at containers as a way to run massive applications, automatically scaling to millions of users, Puffin allows running many independent personal lightweight applications on a single physical machine.
The first part of the project is a specialized application catalog for Docker, with easy to use interface à la app store, that can be easily run on a personal server. The second part is a common hosting platform which allows running limited number of applications for free.
During the presentation I will introduce the ideas behind the project and show a demo.
The difference between Puffin and other container management and hosting services such as Docker Cloud or Rancher, is that the applications are curated to achieve optimal efficiency on a small scale and the interface is more friendly towards an average computer user. Docker was chosen as container technology due to its popularity - more and more web applications are providing Dockerfile or even docker-compose.yml themselves, so it's not very difficult to adapt them to include in the package repository.
Putting multiple containers on a single machine to reduce hosting costs implies multi-tenancy. Although Docker is not fully secure against accessing host system from a container, I believe the situation will improve in the future or alternatively another container technology will be used for Puffin.