Cloud Native/NFV

VMware Launches Essential PKS, for Kubernetes Purists

VMware has launched VMware Essential PKS, a Kubernetes platform designed for organizations looking to get the pure, open source version of the container orchestration software.

"It's a modular and open way to access upstream Kubernetes" -- the sanctioned, unmodified version of Kubernetes produced by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation -- "with the confidence of expert support," Scott Buchanan, VMware senior director of product marketing for cloud native apps, tells Light Reading.

Essential PKS provides access to the most stable version of upstream Kubernetes, in addition to reference architectures that include complementary technologies and support including upgrades, maintenance and patches.

Essential PKS complements VMware's Enterprise and Cloud PKS editions, which combine open source Kubernetes with other open source and proprietary components. Both Essential PKS and Enterprise PKS are software platforms that run on premises, while Cloud PKS is available from the cloud, up and running in minutes.

Custom VMware branded Vans shoe on sale at the VMworld conference, 2017.
Custom VMware branded Vans shoe on sale at the VMworld conference, 2017.

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Essential PKS is modular and customizable, while both Enterprise and Cloud PKS are turnkey software, providing lifecycle management, registry and other components required to run workloads, Buchanan says.

Essential PKS is the fruit of VMware's $550 million acquisition of startup Heptio in December. Telco customers primarily use Heptio's software for internal development, as opposed to customer-facing services, says Buchanan, who was formerly Heptio's VP marketing.

Kubernetes is a hot area for cloud infrastructure. It's a focus for both VMware and its competitors including Cisco, which partners with both Amazon and Google; Red Hat, which also partners with AWS, supports Kubernetes in its own OpenShift cloud, and is on track to be acquired by IBM for $34 billion; and Mirantis, which recently signed a multi-year eight-figure deal with AT&T.

VMware has its own partnership with Amazon, to bring AWS cloud on-premises with Outposts hardware, as well as running VMware vSphere on AWS and NSX networks on AWS and Microsoft Azure.

— Mitch Wagner Visit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on TwitterJoin my Facebook GroupRead my blog: Things Mitch Wagner Saw Executive Editor, Light Reading

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