Kubernetes is an open-source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. It groups containers that make up an application into logical units for easy management and discovery.
Kubernetes builds upon a decade and a half of experience from Google running production workloads at scale, combined with best-of-breed ideas and practices from the community. This blog post will go over the basics of what Kubernetes is, how it works and why you should learn about it.
Let's get to the details.
What is Kubernetes and What Does it Comprise?
Kubernetes is a container platform for managing your containers in an enterprise environment. It is among the top software programs that your business needs. Kubernetes was created by Google and has been open source since June of 2014 under the Apache License v. II so that you can use it on any infrastructure, not just cloud services or other Google products.
It is made up of multiple components that work together to manage containers and their life cycle. These include:
- Kubernetes Control Plane
The control plane handles the orchestration functions, including service discovery, configuration management, etc. This is completely separate from the worker nodes in all Kubernetes clusters. It can be run on dedicated master nodes or as a single control plane across the workers.
- Kubernetes Worker Nodes
These are where your containers run. It is responsible for allocating pods onto worker nodes based on resource utilization, availability, and other factors such as affinity/anti-affinity rules set by cluster administrators. If you need to scale up your pod in the future, it will automatically provision additional worker nodes to run your containers.
- Kubernetes Storage
Kubernetes has various storage back ends you can use for persistent volumes and stateful sets, including Amazon EBS, Google Cloud Persistent Disk (GCP PD), Ceph RBD, Flocker by ClusterHQ, and more.
How Does It Work?
Kubernetes uses a declarative model that enables you to declare your desired state in configuration files. These are then transformed into an execution plan which Kubernetes workers carry out on your behalf. As part of this process, it tracks changes and ensures updates are made only when necessary. Otherwise, they would be overwritten.
Kubernetes is a powerful tool that helps organizations manage their container environment at scale without worrying about managing individual hosts or how containers communicate with each other across multiple nodes. It will help keep all applications running even when there are hardware failures or worker nodes.
This allows for a self-healing system that can dynamically add or remove worker nodes as necessary to meet your application's needs and also helps you avoid downtime during updates by rolling out the update in stages while monitoring its performance. It is also important to learn Kubernetes debugging, so you can handle issues as they come up. This way, you can keep your applications running smoothly without any interruptions.
Why Should I Care About Kubernetes?
Kubernetes is quickly becoming the go-to standard for managing containers at scale. It provides a consistent framework that you can use across any cloud provider or on-premise environment to manage your container deployments.
As more organizations move towards using containers, they want an easy way to benefit from all of its advantages without worrying about managing each container separately.
As a developer, it allows you to focus on building your application and not have to worry about how it will run in production or scale-up once it's out there for the world to use. This gives you a lot of flexibility and can save time and resources as it eliminates the need to support separate container management tools for each application.
If your organization is looking to cut down costs by minimizing infrastructure overhead, Kubernetes provides an efficient way to do that while maintaining high availability across all applications without having additional worker nodes sitting idle.
The Benefits of Kubernetes
There are many advantages of using Kubernetes for container management, including:
- Ability to scale up/down based on demand. It will automatically provision additional worker nodes as your application's needs increase or remove them when they are not needed anymore.
- Provides a consistent framework that you can use across any cloud provider or on-premise environment to manage your container deployments.
- Ability to easily monitor your application's performance. You can use kubectl top pod/pods to see which pods are using the most resources and tweak it accordingly. This way, you won't have any downtime during updates as Kubernetes will roll out updates in stages while monitoring their impact on app performance across multiple environments.
- Minimize infrastructure costs by minimizing the number of idle worker nodes in your cluster and only increasing it when necessary.
- Provide a highly available environment for all applications without having to manage each one separately. This saves time and resources as you don't have to support separate container management tools per application. If any hardware fails, Kubernetes will automatically provision new worker nodes to handle the increased workload.
Drawbacks to Using Kubernetes
While Kubernetes has many benefits, there are some drawbacks that you should be aware of before moving your organization to it.
- It is still a relatively new technology compared to other container management tools and might not have the same level of maturity in terms of features or support yet.
- Some organizations prefer using their own custom-built container management tools as they often have a lot of existing knowledge and experience.
- It can be more complicated to manage compared to other frameworks designed for specific use cases. This is why it's important to learn debugging, so you know how to handle any issues if/when they arise during testing or production.
- The support of multiple cloud providers and on-premise deployments makes it a more complex system to manage compared to others built specifically for one or the other. This is why some organizations opt to continue using their existing tooling even if they incorporate containers in their workflow, as it has been optimized for this specific use case from the beginning.
- Kubernetes can sometimes be resource-intensive, which means it may require more hardware to function properly compared to other container management frameworks that have been optimized for specific use cases.
In conclusion, Kubernetes is a powerful and promising framework that can help organizations cut costs while maintaining high availability across all applications without investing in additional hardware for each one.