Containers are quickly becoming the way to deploy applications in the cloud. After all, what’s not to like?
Perhaps that's why containers have become so interesting to purveyors of applications and those that are getting tired of the heavy lifting required to bring virtual machines to life to run web applications. Although containers have a lot to offer, there are still significant challenges when it comes to orchestrating them across public and private clouds, often forcing MSPs to cobble together deployment and management tools to make containers portable and actually live up to all their promises.
That said, there's been a lot of forward motion with containers and solutions such as Kubernetes, Docker, and Mesos. They've come into the spotlight as potential platforms that incorporate container orchestration engines, which allow administrators to control when containers start and stop, create clusters and bring coordination to the multitude of processes that compose an application. Container orchestration tools built upon orchestration engines bring forth the capabilities that allow administrators to control deployment and incorporate automation to support updates, monitoring and failover.
In other words, without orchestration, containers can be a complex endeavor that no MSP would ever want to get involved with; yet, the concept behind containers, which is basically the ability to make it simple to deploy applications and build application platforms, should ring true with any MSP looking to expand its business offerings. One of the major impediments for most MSPs proves to be where containers intersect with the cloud, an impediment that Rackspace aims to solve.
According to 451 Research, the application container software market will grow 40 percent over the next few years, to nearly $3 billion in 2020. It's a number that illustrates a potentially large opportunity for MSPs seeking to provide businesses with a Kubernetes-as-a-service (KaaS) platform. Many businesses going through the throws of digital transformation lack the internal resources and expertise needed to effectively manage a Kubernetes environment, meaning they will have to come to rely on external sources to make containers viable. MSPs offering KaaS solutions will be well-positioned to help those businesses with their digital-transformation projects and bring containers into the picture.
By delivering a fully managed Kubernetes as a service, Rackspace is allowing organizations to focus more time and resources on building and running their applications, which in turn should expedite digital-transformation chores.
Rackspace claims its Kubernetes as a service will deliver ongoing operations management and support for the entire technology stack, from the hardware to the infrastructure as a service (IaaS) to Kubernetes, including the containers and cluster application services such as monitoring, logging, analytics and other functions.
The offering allows partners to take advantage of the benefits of consuming Kubernetes as part of Rackspace Private Cloud as a Service today.
“Today, we’re making the most modern infrastructure consumable by every enterprise,” said Scott Crenshaw, executive vice president of private clouds at Rackspace. “With Kubernetes as a service, we are providing the industry’s simplest Kubernetes consumption model by delivering it fully configured, tested and validated at enterprise scale with the managed cluster services customers need to effectively run their applications. Rackspace’s combination of operational experience and open-source expertise, coupled with the security, improved economics and a fully managed Kubernetes offering available on leading public and private cloud technologies, helps companies accelerate their digital transformation.”
Kubernetes as a service will be available on Rackspace Private Cloud in all regions in May. Support for public clouds is planned for release later in 2018.