Kubernetes Start: the entry-level model for container technology

  • 6 August 2020
  • Reading time: 3 min
  • Hosting

More and more organisations are deploying Kubernetes, the popular platform for managing IT systems with containers. But opting for containers can sometimes be too big a step, either on account of the technical level or the initial cost. For that reason, Combell now also has ‘Kubernetes Start’, an economical and fully managed K8s environment with which you can get started immediately.

Growing from small to big thanks to Combell Kubernetes Start

Kubernetes EssentialWorking with containers often suits today’s approach of application development. You design your infrastructure during the development. And thanks to container technology like Docker, later on you can scale up a lot more quickly and easily. A comprehensive container management platform like Kubernetes typically comes into its own when you have a lot of containers to manage and you want to automate their management.

With Kubernetes Start, the entry threshold is lowered significantly. Even those who start off small on account of a limited budget or less complex requirements can aspire to the benefits of automation and container orchestration. Even those who lack thousands of visitors a day can still view the high availability and the self-healing capabilities of Kubernetes as important to them. And if it becomes necessary, you can still switch later to a full-blown environment of your own, irrespective of whether it is managed by Combell.

Ready-made container infrastructure

Kubernetes Start is an interesting and economical choice with which you get the main features of Combell’s Managed Kubernetes offering, without having to set up a full-blown environment of your own from the start, or without needing to finance it.

You enjoy the opportunity to get started just as well with containers immediately, including services for a smooth start and reliable operation, namely:

  • Private container environment: You can set up containers freely in your own private Docker registry and then roll out and manage them via the ‘kubectl’ command line interface.
  • Hyperstorage: Software-defined storage, analogous to Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), with which you can link storage capacity just like a web service.
  • Backup: Combell backs up your data regularly.
  • Monitoring: Permanent monitoring of your systems with rapid intervention by us if any problems occur.
  • Metrics and alerts: Clear overview of your technical parameters, with automatic alarm for unusual situations.

The cost price can be reduced with an option that limits the complexity, namely:

  • Kubernetes Master & Worker: With Kubernetes Start, you can roll out unlimited Pods – groups of connected containers – for as long as you have sufficient physical resources, and restart them automatically if necessary. The Kubernetes Master and Worker that jointly manage this are not themselves redundant.
  • HTTP/HTTPS: The users and web services with which your application communicates, use the classic network protocol of HTTP(S). You are able to set up your own, customised Managed Kubernetes for WebSockets, FTP or some other protocol, for example.
  • Load balancer: You do not use your own load balancers but a shared solution from Combell, with which you benefit from excellent protection for an affordable price.
  • Database-as-a-Service: You use a database on a shared platform from Combell. If this proves too limited for your requirements, Kubernetes Start allows you to link to a Virtual Machine (VM) running your own database server.

Want to be sure that the technical choice you make today does not limit future requirements? The Start solution provides for a painless upgrade without downtime to a comprehensive own Kubernetes. If you do not need this upgrade, you do not pay for it either.

High-availability guarantees and security

Guarantees of Kubernetes EssentialKubernetes facilitates guaranteed availability of your application at several levels, without the need for heavy investments. Even in K8s Start, you can spread the workload across multiple containers or pods, and self-healing ensures that any stalled container or pod will be started up again after 5 seconds. In this way, the impact of a failure or capacity problem is minimised.

The Worker-server itself is not redundant but can be restarted automatically. Without expensive hardware-level redundancy, you are still able to achieve full respectable availability guarantees. Moreover, Combell takes permanent care of monitoring and support – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week when you opt for a ‘Plus’ Service Level Agreement (SLA).

Combell also provides a basic infrastructure for information security that protects your Kubernetes infrastructure at the network level. Whenever you need support, you can talk to engineers with specialised knowledge.

Customisation on a predictable budget

Grow in size with Kubernetes EssentialIf you want the very best guarantees with a Pro SLA, direct support via chat and engineers who are familiar with the specific characteristics of your infrastructure, you can go for the complete version of the Managed Kubernetes package. Where your requirements are somewhat less critical, or you want to start off with a limited investment and only later transition fully to your own environment, Kubernetes Start is an excellent choice.

The price you pay depends on the scale of the underlying physical infrastructure you are able to address. For a no-obligation consultation on this, you can arrange a discussion with our experts. In contrast to the purely variable budgets you find at the big public Cloud players (Amazon Web Services, Google, etc.), Combell offers a basic package that includes real usage (compute, traffic). This means that you can enjoy the advantages of Kubernetes for an affordable and predictable budget.

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