This is Part Eight of the “Evaluating Container Management Platforms” series. To view the rest of the documents in this series, click here.
Enterprises executives needing to operationalize the adoption of cloud native container architecture need to familiarize themselves with the value and options provided by Container Management Platforms. To assist in this effort, Evaluator Group has provided a series of briefs, starting with the Introduction to Container Management Platforms, and continuing with more detailed discussions of available features and design tradeoffs offered by different Platforms. This Guide outlines these details for the basic layer of CMP functionality. Two later Guides include more detail on advanced functionality, as well as an evaluation guide describing other considerations that customers may wish to consider in making a Platform selection.
During the course of reading these Guides, evaluators and/or decision makers may wish to refer to a dictionary to better understand new technology components and project names relevant to the container ecosystem. Evaluator Group provides two reference guides to help decrypt the new language. “Basic Kubernetes/Container Architecture” provides a map – and definitions of each of the component technology layers and common terms used to describe a Kubernetes environment. “Key Open-Source Projects Associated with Kubernetes and Containers” provides definitions for the most common open-source coding projects that contribute to the modern container and application services marketplace.
As described in the preceding Guides (“An Introduction to Container Management Platforms” and “Basic Container Management and Software Infrastructure”), Container Management Platforms (CMPs) provide a full operating and management stack for a container environment from the operating system through the container layer and all the way to the user and administrative UI. Enterprises which are considering a strategic move to new container architecture must understand and consider the entire offering stack before making a Platform decision.
The functionality included in a CMP is generally divided into two layers of service: a Basic level, which includes Kubernetes Managed Containers with basic cluster support and software infrastructure (generally supporting a single Kubernetes cluster), and an Advanced level, with two sets of optional services, one aimed at accelerating application development and delivery, and the second focused on more efficient management of scaled-out environments involving multi-cloud and hybrid cloud container environments. The diagram below outlines the specific elements which generally fall into each category, although the lines between these groupings blur across different vendors.
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