Kubernetes, the open-source system for automating the deployment and scaling of containerized applications, does its job really well. It groups an application’s containers into logical units for easy management and discovery, scales all the way from local testing to truly global production, and runs pretty much anywhere.
At the same time, the platform can be intimidating to implement — particularly for new users configuring their first-ever system running on Kubernetes. Kubernetes is quickly becoming the de facto standard for software container orchestration, but accessing it remains a challenge for anyone who is not a hardcore systems engineer.
Heptio, founded by Kubernetes co-creators Joe Beda and Craig McLuckie, is a company that aims to make the platform more accessible. “Our mission is to make Kubernetes more naturally accessible to developers who aren’t necessarily deep back end engineers, and help it become more integrated into the fabric of enterprise IT,” said Heptio CEO McLuckie in an interview.
To that end, Heptio has just announced two new open source projects designed to make Kubernetes easier to use in any production scenario, regardless of where you run your cluster. Heptio Ark is an easy to use disaster recovery tool that both backs up and restores your Kubernetes cluster, while Heptio Sonobuoy is a tool for inspecting cluster state and configuration to ensure everything is correctly configured and working as it should. Both projects are publicly available on GitHub.
All Aboard the Ark
Heptio Ark is named after the literal definition of “ark,” namely, a vessel or sanctuary that serves as protection against extinction. Production use of Kubernetes means managing the challenge of cluster backups and, if disaster strikes, restorations. Mixing in stateful workloads makes things even more complex; pinpointing the correct association between a volume snapshot and its pod(s) at a specific time stamp, for instance, can be tricky.