Google Anthos: Kubernetes the Easy Way

Kubernetes continues to gain popularity in the industry, and shows no signs of slowing down. This container management platform has essentially won the container wars, and is now the de facto orchestration tool for containers.

Kubernetes is popular because managing containers is a serious pain. But Kubernetes itself is a pain, too—ask any admin who’s tried to bootstrap it. In fact, the most popular method for learning how to set up Kubernetes is a GitHub tutorial called “Kubernetes The Hard Way”, by Kelsey Hightower.

But those organizations without the time or patience to go through the grind would prefer “Kubernetes the Easy Way.”

Enter Google Anthos.

Anthos enables deployment of Google-managed Kubernetes infrastructure on any physical hardware, including your own hardware, and on other public clouds. This is why Anthos is so cool, and why technology consultancy and cloud services provider SADA is excited to offer it to their customers.

SADA CTO Miles Ward (no relation to author) recently had a video chat with ActualTech Media Partner David Davis to talk about Google Anthos. He explained why Anthos is the answer for so many organizations that want to use Kubernetes, but offload the deployment and management of it.

You can absolutely use “Kubernetes The Hard Way,” Ward explains: Just “print out a copy of Kelsey’s manual, run through installation, and you’d have a working, effective cluster—as long as you don’t change anything: Don’t change the number of machines, don’t do an update on the Kubernetes binaries, don’t rotate [security] keys, don’t change to different repositories.”

Real-World Kubernetes

The problem, as Ward points out, is that “those are things you have to go through in the real world. Kubernetes goes through an update every quarter at this point.”

Compare that with Anthos: “In Anthos, an upgrade to a new [Kubernetes version] is a push-button (exercise),” Ward says. “It’s done for you, on its own.”

And doing other typically time-consuming Kubernetes chores is just as easy: “As you add or subtract physical hardware, you just register it with the cluster, and you’re off to the races…

as you change out new gear, just register it with the host. That kind of fungibility in the real world is one of the huge benefits Anthos offers.”

The other important thing Anthos brings with it, Ward says, is Istio, a secure, networking control plane. Google describes it this way:

“Anthos Service Mesh includes a distribution of Istio, which is an open-source implementation of the service mesh infrastructure layer. Anthos Service Mesh uses side-car proxies to enhance network security, reliability, and visibility.”

The combination of Anthos and Istio is powerful, and makes a compelling case for incorporating the Google Cloud Platform (GCP) into your operations. Watch the rest of the video for more detail about Anthos and how to ensure a smooth-running container infrastructure, as well as what SADA offers for organizations considering GCP.

Note also that I profiled SADA last year. More on that is here.