back to article Docker shocker: Cash-strapped container crew threatens to delete 4.5 petabytes of unloved images

Docker has warned that it plans to delete 4.5 petabytes of container images that haven’t been used for six or more months. The container pioneer can do so because it’s tweaked its Terms of Service with an expanded clause 2.5 that adds the right to delete data. The one-time DevOps darling has not changed that out of malice. …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    4.5PB? Is that all?

    Hell, I've got more cat porn videos than tha... errrmmm... I mean MUSIC! Yeah, music! I've got more music than that. No porn here, nopea nopea nope. Nothing to see here, please move along.

    <Jedi hand wave>This is not the porn stash you were looking for.</Jedi hand wave>

    1. IGotOut Silver badge

      Re: 4.5PB? Is that all?

      That's a lot of 30 second clips.

    2. 9Rune5

      Re: 4.5PB? Is that all?

      Shirley someone out there will have used Docker Hub as a distribution center for pirate activity?

      1. newspuppy

        Re: 4.5PB? Is that all?

        If it was pirate stuff... then... Hopefully it would be accessed.. and thus not an issue...

        To me the interesting part of the story is that Docker analyzed the data......

        I do not use do not know of the TOS.. but.. this means they can snoop on my image? Not what I want in a provider...

        1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

          Re: 4.5PB? Is that all?

          I would suspect that there is a big difference between activity logs, as in "last time this image was used" compared to analysing that is stored within the image itself.

        2. Tom 38 Silver badge

          Re: 4.5PB? Is that all?

          To me the interesting part of the story is that Docker analyzed the data......

          I do not use do not know of the TOS.. but.. this means they can snoop on my image? Not what I want in a provider...

          Then pay for/run a private provider. The free tier allows anyone to publish public images that anyone can pull. "Anyone" includes the people hosting it.

    3. Efer Brick

      Re: 4.5PB? Is that all?

      hah, Neekolul more like, ok boomer

  2. Dwarf

    Save the whales

    How many sample whales are going to be killed by this move.

    Has anybody listened to what the whales say ?

    1. seven of five

      Re: Save the whales

      Dory did. She even speaks whale...

  3. werdsmith Silver badge

    So much abandoned repository stuff is people trying it out and then forgetting about it. I must have left a trail of trials.

  4. mark l 2 Silver badge

    Six months seems a fair amount of time to see if its been abandoned.

    Maybe they could tweak the T&Cs so they can auction of the containers after 6 months, and it can get televised for a new show on Dave of 'virtual storage wars'.

  5. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Docker tweaked its terms of service

    If a landlord tweaked his terms of leasing, there would be a court case, but because this is the Web, one-sided changes like that can be made and nobody can complain.

    When will Terms of Service be recognized as a binding contract for both sides ? I understand Docker is struggling, and it's a shame for its employees, but it offered a free service and didn't think things through. Now it is trying to find a way to stay afloat, so it modifies the contract to put people's images in danger if they don't pay up.

    Not fair. They offered a service under certain conditions, now they are unilaterally changing the conditions. That should not be allowed.

    1. entfe001

      Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

      The usual boilerplate on T&C says that they may modify the conditions and the only recourse for the user is either implicitly accept the new terms by continuing usage of the services or leave. The most you might get are either the prorrated subscription fee unused for non-acceptance of new terms and the no application of any "quit-early" penalties (which used to be the standard issue on telecoms and utilities services not so long ago, at least where I live). This has been this way for ages, and if it hasn't been successfully challenged in court yet I hold no hope whatsoever to change.

      However, there's a catch for hosting services: what if you do not log in to the service to administer it and be slapped in the face with the new T&C? I remember when the Photobucket service decided that "hot-linking images from third-party websites" required from a certain point in time the highest-grade account, and you had to either pay for it or let all your images render everywhere else with a "this fella hadn't paid our fee so you can't see a thing" placeholder image. Some sort of a ransomware-as-a-service, you might say.

      But people who did not log in were never shown the new T&C and so these could not be enforced. So, if you logged in into your account you were screwed, but as long as you did not you were spared. Pretty sure if they did it that way was only because the lawyers told so to prevent a sueball. That's also why hosting-like services usually have a clause to allow them to purge content if no logins are made for a while.

    2. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

      Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

      I got an email yesterday from a client company I haven't provided services to as a freelancer for over three months. They wanted me to sign a "Termination Agreement" (which in itself sounds rather ominous). I read it – it places stricter non-compete clauses on me than the original contract. Thankfully, in this situation, it seems they can't just unilaterally change our agreement, but instead they need to try to trick me into signing something "routine" and "when I've got a minute". I've a good mind to poach some of their clients (which was allowed in the original contract) just to prove the point that I'm not obliged to sign away any further rights and there's bugger all they can do to make me.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

        When they pull the "routine paperwork" line, you should happily sign away.

        ...after making some edits that are highly favorable to you, of course.

        If I liked the client, I'd stick to something silly like: $client agrees that $client's senior management will go bowling with mr. Cumberdale on his birthday. If I didn't like them, maybe something from the BOFH playbook.

        1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

          Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

          Sadly it's electronic "signing", so I can't tamper with it. Otherwise, that could have been fun.

    3. oiseau Silver badge

      Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

      If a landlord tweaked his terms of leasing ...

      Can Docker be reasonably compared to a landlord and the service they are providing as leasing if it is free? ie: I am not having to pay anything for it.

      I'd be in a rage if I was a paying customer which would mean that certain previously stipulated conditions would have to be met by both parties, but seeing that all I have to do is a pull and/or push once every six months to keep things as they are, I'd just do that and said then thanks a lot for the heads up.


    4. chuBb.

      Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

      Ahhh the freetard lament

      even in the virtual world there is no such thing as a free lunch

    5. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

      "When will Terms of Service be recognized as a binding contract for both sides ?"

      When the service is paid for. A contract provides something in return for a consideration. No consideration, no contract.

      1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

        Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

        Right. Because paid for Ts & Cs have never been changed by the company offering the services.

        Sorry, that argument does not wash.

        1. JimJimmyJimson

          Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

          Two different issues.

          There can be no contract if there is no consideration. That's simply an essential element of a contract. One might argue that supplying of containers for the service to share represents consideration - but that is a separate and complicated question (I think we get into discussions about weighing boilers at that point)

          In terms of unilateral changes - assuming a contract exists - if you agreed in the original TOS to unilateral changes then you can't really complain and its perfectly legitimate (mostly - there are some limits to that in most jurisdictions) - if you didn't then they can't be changed.

    6. Sandtitz Silver badge

      Re: Docker tweaked its terms of service

      Few years ago MS stopped offering the "unlimited" Onedrive, and people were up in arms in these forums.

      Docker is the cool new guy and they're given a free pass here.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At that price you could replace / add another set of mirrored redundancy every 3 months.

    Excluding power / cooling and location costs etc.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I tried to discover

    A little something to store my shit in

    Oh docker refrain

    From deleting my craaaaaap

  8. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    Behan's view of the world

    The big difference between storage for money and storage for free is that storage for money means you actually own and control your data.

    It's a Freemium service, originally this was derived from the view that "It's free, mmmm you're yum" - these days if you are using a free service then you are someones lunch.

  9. razorfishsl

    People these days think they are owed a free living....

    it costs money to feed & cool those data stores.....

  10. John Doe 12

    Storage Wars

    Does nobody else here see the potential for a low budget TV show with a load of rednecks bidding to poke through all the abandoned crap?

  11. hoola Silver badge

    Cloud is supposed to be the answer to everything

    I thought, based on the way that cloud services and storage in particular are sold that they all cost next to nothing. For the amount they are paying I can have my own multi-site object store using a commercial, fully supported product (that is all AWS storage is) presented over S3 or pretty much any other protocol and still have a huge amount of change.

    The Capex is not even an issue now as there are plenty of leasing options if you need to turn the cost into Opex.

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