Kubernetes in DevOps Space: Everything You Need To Know


October 10, 2018

Category Blog, DevOps

It can be rightly said that Kubernetes and DevOps are the power couple of clouds! They run hand-in-hand for the enterprises that are looking to develop complex applications. You may be thinking that, both DevOps and Kubernetes have a different context, how this is possible?

In our previous blog, we have described every bit about Kubernetes but how Kubernetes and DevOps are related with each other? What output software developers and enterprise can get if all these terms are map together?

Terms like Kubernetes, DevOps, clouds, containers may seem to very high for non-technical leaders. But, in this article, we have explained Kubernetes and DevOps in a very simple manner.

Read this 5 mins article to get clear the scenario of how Kubernetes can be a real strength for DevOps implementation.

DevOps and Kubernetes

What is DevOps?

Today, Software delivery cycle is getting shorter and shorter, while on the other hand application size has been getting bigger and bigger. Software developers and enterprise looks for a simpler solution. Hence, there came a process called DevOps which is solely dedicated to supporting software building and delivery.

Its main goal is to unify application development and its operations throughout the software development life-cycle from strategy, planning, coding, building and testing through deploying, operating and monitoring. DevOps tools automate tasks and manage configurations at a different stage of configuration delivery.

But the real challenge exists when the application becomes more micro and diverse. So, how DevOps helps to build and deliver, larger and complex application to the user?

Thus, to go in-depth, we need to add another Swiss-army tool to our kitty i.e. Container.

Before straightly jumping to the Kubernetes, let’s understand the gist about the containers.

Quick Overview About Container

Containers make it easier to host and manage life-cycle of web applications inside the portable environment. It packages up application code other dependencies into building blocks to deliver consistency, efficiency, and productivity. Docker is a tool to deploy containers inside the cluster and treat it all as a single unit.

Container and DevOps have although different concepts; they are totally the different things but are part of the same conversation.

But, the real challenge is deploying the multi-container application as multiple applications can’t just live in one container. And what if there is a need to scale out service as per the business needs? What to do to provide services across multiple machines without dealing with cumbersome network and storage settings? That’s how Kubernetes came into play!

What is Kubernetes?

Kubernetes is an open source container orchestration platform, enabling multiple numbers of containers to work together in harmony, reducing operational burden. It manages application containers across multiple hosts.

Features like auto-scaling, rolling deployment, computer resource, volume storage to the name of few are some of the exceptional weapons of Kubernetes. Similar to containers, it is designed to run on bare metal, in the data center, public cloud or even a hybrid cloud.

So, How Kubernetes Can be a Strength For DevOps?

With the help of Kubernetes, developers can share their software and dependencies easily with IT operations. It minimizes the workload and solves the conflicts between different environments. Container Orchestration bring IT operations and developers closer together, making it hassle-free for the team to collaborate effectively and efficiently with each other.

Kubernetes provide the tool for the developers that respond to the customer demands while relying on the cloud for the burden of running applications. This is done by eliminating the manual tasks that are related to deploying and scaling containerized applications so that it enables to run software more reliably when moved from one environment to another.

For instance, it is feasible to schedule and deploys any number of containers onto a node (across public, private or hybrid clouds) and Kubernetes manages those workloads enabling you to do what you intended for. With the help of Kubernetes, container tasks are simplified including the operations like horizontal auto-scaling, rolling updates, canary deployment etc.

Hence, opting for the Kubernetes workflow can simplify the build/test/deploy pipelines in DevOps.

How Kubernetes Can Help Different IT Operational Team?

Kubernetes is all about portability; giving the flexibility to be a platform agonistic on any level whether it’s a language, technology or the platform itself.

  • Developer: Build once run everywhere
  • QA/Testing: Reliable and coordinated environments between test and production
  • Sys-admin – Config once, run anything
  • Operational team: Unified solution for building, shipping, and scaling software. Enables to focus on features, bugs and shipping better software rather than setting up and maintaining environment and tools.

Kubernetes helps to reduce config-variables and time-consuming setup and maintenance task which are boon for developers, sys-admin and other teams. It can be proved to be a game-changer for QA and testers because it reduces risk and increases efficiency. This container orchestration technology increases the competence and eliminates the risk by ensuring that the system configuration of the test environment is identical to the production environment.

Kubernetes is much needed in today’s software development culture because the shift of the digital wave has made software architecture much complex, written in various technologies and run on multiple environments followed by many iterations. It manages this consistency, be its infinite loop of technologies and environments.

So, on a brighter note, Kubernetes is one of the best container orchestration technologies for achieving DevOps enabled culture.

Kubernetes Improves Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery

CI and CD are the two different acronyms that are often mentioned when people talk about modern development practices. They are like vectors; having the same direction but different magnitude. Their goals are the same; making software development and release process faster and robust. Tools like Jenkins have redefined CI/CD by automating various steps in the development cycle in terms of speed, precision, repeatability, and quality. With the advent of a Docker container, it has left no stone unturned to provide continuous integration/continuous delivery in the world of software development.

The rise of Kubernetes within the container ecosystem has impacted the CI/CD process. Instead of shifting code between different virtual machines in different environments, the same code can be moved across container clusters with Kubernetes. The previous versions provided a static virtual machine which is preferable for monolithic architecture and container orchestration requires a Microservice model. These rings-in new opportunities in terms of elasticity, high availability and resource utilization. However, the old approaches and tools don’t offer enhanced CI/CD which calls for Kubernetes.

The Benefits Kubernetes Have Stored-in To Enable DevOps Workflow Easy Which Includes:
  • Hassle-free solution for making development, testing and production environment consistent: When an application is written, tested or deployed inside the container, the environment at different parts of delivery doesn’t change. This eases up the collaboration between different teams i.e. testers, admin, developers etc enabling the team to work in the same containerized environment.
  • Provides simple updates: Delivering software continuously calls for the application updates on a constant and streamlined basis. Kubernetes can help with it, as container orchestration can be easy to apply any updates to the application. When your app is redistributed into multiple Microservices, each one is deployed in a separate container and updates can be made in some part of the app without disturbing the rest of the app by restarting the container.
  • Support for multiple frameworks: When DevOps approached is followed, containers can easily switch between different frameworks or deployment platform. This happens because container orchestration is agnostic towards platform, languages etc.; this means any type of app can be run inside the container. Moreover, it is also hassle-free to move containers easily between different types of the host system. For instance, if you want to move from Red Hat to Ubuntu, it is easy to move that with containers.
  • Offers Scalability: The container-based autonomous continuous integration ecosystem has the ability to scale up or scale down the application based on the load. This nature ensures instant feedback once a commit is made to the repository.
  • Less time is taken to the onboard new application: Reduces the time to onboard new projects; Kubernetes can accommodate new loads and the reusable pipeline as code modules that can be shared across projects.
  • Increase in developer’s productivity: Developers do not have to wait in the queues to receive feedback on the builds. The Pipeline as code provides important convenience and productivity which enables them to define CI configurations alongside code in the same repository.
  • Solving Infrastructure problems: Managing manual infrastructure process causes headaches for coding teams because someone has to remain alert in case of any mishap happens. Issues like power outages, unforeseen traffic spike etc are likely to arise. In such circumstances, if your app is down, you may suffer a heavy loss. But, with Kubernetes, you can automate patches and update to solve these problems.
  • Server usage efficiency: If your apps are not packed efficiently onto servers, you need to overpay for the heavy load. This is true regardless you are running your application on-premise or on the cloud. Kubernetes increases the efficiency of server usage and ensures that you are not under-doing or increasing the load.
Other Benefits
  • Deliver the software quickly with better compliance
  • Drives continuous enhancement
  • Increase transparency and collaboration amongst the team who is involved in delivering software
  • Effectively minimize security risk while controlling cost

Considering The Hurdles…

Despite hundreds of benefits, there is always ‘but’ that changes the scenario… Kubernetes is relatively difficult to set-up and managing Kubernetes calls for the highly-skilled resource. To the untrained eye, Kubernetes looks simple and can think of running in hours or days, but in reality, additional functionality is needed i.e. security, high availability, disaster recovery, backups, and maintenance – everything you need to make production ready. The organizations that are looking to opt for Kubernetes need to think of highly skilled resource to give an edge to their business. If the highly skilled resource is not the feasible option, an organization can opt for Kuberznetes management platform which is developed to simplify Kubernetes management even if your system is rigid.

Things to Take Care While Choosing Kubernetes Management Platform
  • Select the platform which is production ready and fully automates configuration without any hassle.
  • Select the platform which supports multi-cloud strategy and helps the app to run anywhere without hosting new environment
  • Select the platform which incorporates automated intelligent monitoring and alerts
  • Select the platform which provides dynamism, flexibility and unmatched transparency between modules
  • Select the platform that can assure support and training.
Wrapping it up…

Kubernetes is the best way to keep the development agile and ensure continuous delivery; hence it is one of the blessed things amongst developers. For organizations using container orchestration technologies, product development is defined by Microservice architecture. The organization must understand how DevOps and continuous development process enable the creation of an application that end users truly find it useful. Kubernetes has changed the way how software is developed and shipped; Kubernetes is delivering what it really matters; making CI/CD becoming reality for many of the organization.

Until now, you may have got the clear picture of how Kubernetes can help DevOps in simplifying the operations. Still, if we are missing anything or have concerns about it, you can tell us in the comment section.

Apart from this, if you are dubious about whether Kubernetes technology is good for your organization or not or how to proceed with it, you can talk with our expert Devops consultants or hire our DevOps experts to build your application in a right way.

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