Openshift vs. Kubernetes: Which One Will Lead in 2023?

OpenShift & Kubernetes are the two most widely used solutions to container orchestration technologies at the moment. 

We’re going to compare OpenShift vs Kubernetes in this article, but let me say that the comparison is not fair. It is challenging to compare OpenShift and Kubernetes because they are, overall, two quite different systems.

Comparing them is similar to comparing a CPU with a personal computer. Let’s compare these two now.

Overview of Kubernetes

More than ten years ago, Google developers established the open-source Kubernetes container-as-a-service (CaaS) platform. A flexible, accessible containerization solution that enables developers to manage applications and workloads is what Kubernetes is at its heart. 

The system can perform the deployment, scalability, and management of applications. Kubernetes, which is now a member of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, gives application developers access to features like self-monitoring, automation systems, container rebalancing, storage management, and more.

Overview of Openshift

Red Hat, a developer of mainstream applications, developed the containerization software family known as OpenShift. OpenShift is the transmission, while Kubernetes is the foundation of distributed systems.

OpenShift is a Kubernetes container platform that runs in the cloud and is regarded as both containerization technology and a platform-as-a-service (PaaS). Another well-known containerization platform, Docker, is also used in part of its construction. 

In addition to Kubernetes container workload compatibility, OpenShift provides uniform security, integrated monitoring, centralized policy administration, and built-in monitoring. It is quick, allows for self-service provisioning, and interfaces with many other technologies. 

In other words, there is no vendor lock-in. The open-source platform, formerly known as Origin, rebranded as OpenShift OKD, enables programmers to build, test, and deploy cloud-based applications. Furthermore, Go, Node.js, Ruby, Python, JAVA, and PHP are among the programming languages it supports.

Overview of Container Orchestration System

The tactic of utilizing automation to control the lifespan of software containers is known as container orchestration. This method relieves teams of tedious human labor by automating time-consuming processes like (re)creating, scaling, and upgrading containers. Networking and storage resources are also managed with the use of orchestration.

Containers are small, executable software components that have all the components needed for the code to function correctly across various IT systems. Clustering of nodes (whether real or virtual computers) that act as a single reliable server is used in containerization. More room, application separation, bandwidth allocation, and consistently better processing rates are all provided by this.

Product vs. Project

OpenShift is a paid product that requires a subscription. Kubernetes is free and open-source. Hence, OpenShift provides well-paid assistance for bugs and issues. In Kubernetes, you must contact the community of developers, administrators, and architects to fix tool flaws.

User Interface and Experience

The complicated web interface of Kubernetes could confuse beginners. Users must install the Kubernetes panel and use kube-proxy to send their machine’s port to the cluster server to access the Kubernetes web graphics user interface (GUI). Since the dashboard lacks a login page, users must also establish bearer tokens to facilitate authentication and authorization.

On the other hand, OpenShift offers a user-friendly online console with a one-touch login page. Adding, deleting, and modifying resources is easy with the console’s form-based interface. With OpenShift, users benefit.

Architecture of Kubernetes

An architecture called Kubernetes provides a loosely linked approach for service discovery throughout a cluster. One or more computing nodes and one or more control planes make up a Kubernetes cluster. 

In general, the control plane is in charge of controlling the entire cluster, making the application program interface (API) accessible, and planning the startup and shutdown of compute nodes according to a desired configuration. 

A container runtime like Docker and an agent called kubelet that interacts with the control plane are both installed on each computing node. Each node may consist of bare metal servers, virtual computers running on-site or in the cloud, or both (VMs). Among a Kubernetes cluster’s primary elements are the following:

  1. Nodes: Containerized apps run on nodes, which are virtual machines or physical servers. One or more application instances may run on each cluster node. Although a typical Kubernetes cluster will contain numerous nodes, there might be as little as one (and deployments with hundreds or more nodes are common).
  2. Image Registry: The control plane transfers container images from the registry to nodes for use in container pods.
  3. Pods: Applications running in containers are housed in pods. They are the lowest unit of deployment for apps in a Kubernetes cluster and can contain one or more containers.

Architecture of Openshift

Microservices compose the OpenShift Container Platform’s architecture. It operates on Kubernetes, and stores object data in etcd, a trustworthy clustered key-value store.

REST API requests alter the system state. Controllers read the user’s desired state from the REST API and try to sync the system. User requests produce “build” objects. When a new build is created, the build controller runs a clustering process to build it. The controller updates the build object over the REST API after the build finishes, letting the user know.

The controller pattern makes much of the OpenShift Container Platform flexible. Builds can be run and launched separately from images and deployments. Controllers execute the system’s “business logic” by implementing user actions. 

The API can also be used to schedule routine administrative tasks. Controllers, those scripts react to changes. OpenShift Container Platform prioritizes cluster customization.

Controllers use a steady stream of system updates to match user activity. This event stream immediately transmits changes from etcd to the REST API and controllers, allowing system changes to spread swiftly.

Final Verdict

Kubernetes and OpenShift are both widely accepted container management technologies with distinct advantages. OpenShift, a container platform, interacts with Kubernetes to improve application performance. 

In contrast to Openshift, which offers a variety of options to suit one needs, Kubernetes is available for free. Hence, OpenShift charges a fee but offers customer service that Kubernetes does not. You will receive assistance if Kubernetes-related problems arise. Kubernetes does have a sizable community that is willing to help. 

Another thing to consider is that while OpenShift has a swanky dashboard user experience, Kubernetes Helm charts are fantastic to work with. The list of distinctions is extensive.



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