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Kubernetes: Is it Overkill?

By Dick Weisinger

Kubernetes (k8s) is an open-source container orchestration system helps manage and scale software deployments. It provides high redundancy and the ability to scale up and down depending on volume of traffic.

Kubernetes manages container orchestration. It’s the framework in which containers like Docker can interact. It handles things like fault tolerance and enabling network communication between containers. It spins containers up or down as needed, depending on network traffic and can decide which machines should be used to run specific containers. In short, Kubernetes tries to optimally manage and schedule workloads.

But if your organization isn’t a Google with thousands or hundreds of servers, do you really need it? That depends who you talk to.

For example, Daniel Barker, chief Architect at Dell, said that “it will continue to be the nexus for future automation developments.” Chris Short, Marketing Manager at Red Hat, said that “Kubernetes is the future of infrastructure management. It’s hard to see past that right now.”

But there are doubters.

Matt Asay, principal at Amazon Web Services, wrote in InfoWorld that “Kubernetes may be the current darling of the open source crowd, but Hadoop was no less revered before it. Hadoop ultimately ran out of gas because it was incredibly hard to use. Kubernetes, though making strides, remains ‘no picnic to operate.’ That’s a very diplomatic way of saying, as others have, that the Kubernetes ‘experience [can be] a pain in the ass.'”

Corey Quinn, Duckbill Group’s co-founder, told TechRepublic that “my problem with Kubernetes, as it currently stands, is two fold. First, it is tremendously complex to understand, and not just get up and running, but to maintain it… Secondly, people are building their entire career around Kubernetes. In a few years, no one is going to care about it at all. It’s going to have simplified and slipped below the surface of awareness. We’ve seen this in tech time and again and again.”

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