New Microsoft Azure service makes it even easier to deploy containers. Containers are lightweight, portable, and self-sufficient. They are now broadly accepted and they enable simple portability between platforms and between clouds. Today, Microsoft announced a new Azure service called Azure Container Instances (ACI) that will make it even easier to deploy containers in the cloud.

An Azure Container Instance is a single container that is billed by the second. It allows developers to select the exact amount of memory separate from the exact count of vCPUs based on their needs. Since containers are a first-class object of the Azure platform, it offers Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) on the instance and billing tags to track usage at the individual container level. Azure Container Instances are now available in public preview for Linux containers. In the coming weeks, Microsoft will add support for Windows containers. Microsoft allows you to deploy either using the Azure CLI or using a template. Microsoft is also releasing the ACI Connector for Kubernetes that enables Kubernetes clusters to deploy to Azure Container Instances.