The Ubiquity of Kubernetes


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It is the year 2017 Kelsey Hightower is on the KubeCon stage. The sound of the microphone starts echoing... Raise your hands if you think installing kubernetes is easy. This is how a well known Kubernetes advocate started his presentation.

Explaining abstract concepts as we all know, is complicated. How do you wrap your head around a concept such as a cluster?

Cluster is the core concept of Borg and later on Kubernetes. But what is it and why is it important?

Kelsey Hightower made his name describing concepts such as this into understandable metaphors.

In the same year, 2017, at the O’Reilly Software conference, he explained the reason why you would use something like Kubernetes. He used the game “Tetris”. Imagine your machine is a Tetris. Everything is automated but without awareness of CPU and memory. Now imagine the blocks all falling vertically without any changes. Very soon the game will be over and your machines will run over.

However, imagine you use kubernetes to schedule these “blocks“ of workloads, fitting them into the machine’s spare resources.

When blocks are moved to the best possible places, Tetris may be a never-ending game and so is your cluster capacity. The cluster mentality of knowing where to put a workload best is one of the greatest advantages when it comes to using Kubernetes. Kubernetes actually knows where to schedule the workload based on CPU and memory.

Kubernetes solved a lot of problems. It created a whole ecosystem and community around it. The rate of adoption and its ubiquity became a rallying point to many software engineers.

Docker helped make the containers mainstream however it introduced a problem. How do you use containers in production? Kubernetes solved that problem.

Today, we will walk you through the adoption that Kubernetes went through. How it differentiated itself from other container orchestration systems.

We’re going to discuss the early growing pains Kubernetes have. Finally, we’ll talk about how kubernetes adoption best practices. Should you self host your own clusters or use a fully managed service? What is a good setup for a single cluster or multiple clusters?

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