Canonical announces further enterprise Kubernetes support options

Canonical partners up to make it easier for companies to deploy Kubernetes.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

Canonical continues to push forward with its Kubernetes container DevOps management plans. In its latest move, Ubuntu Linux's parent company announced two consulting packages for enterprise Kubernetes deployments. In addition, it's offering expanded enterprise support with partners. This will include Galactic Fog's serverless infrastructure, Rancher's container management workflow, and Weaveworks' Weave Cloud.

This comes as Canonical prepares for an initial public offering (IPO). These moves are both to gain new cloud and container customers and to show that Canonical is laser-focused on the enterprise market. Earlier, Canonical had tried, and failed, to dominate the Linux desktop and become a smartphone leader.

Ubuntu is already the leading cloud operating system. Besides being popular with cloud users, Canonical works with Amazon Web Services (AWS), Azure, Google, and Oracle to optimize Ubuntu guests for containers on these clouds. Canonical also works with Google Google Container Engine (GKE) to enable hybrid operations between enterprise deployments of Kubernetes and the Google Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offering.

Canonical's new two consulting packages are Kubernetes Explorer and Kubernetes Discoverer. The former is aimed at existing cloud infrastructure, while the latter is designed for companies working with bare-metal clouds and containers.

"Kubernetes Explorer" covers Kubernetes on a public cloud, private cloud, or VMware. It delivers the reference architecture at $15,000 including training and deployment, with optional consulting for workload analysis or to assist in the creation of continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) pipelines to support everyday container operations.

"Kubernetes Discoverer" moves up from Explorer to include bare metal operations. At $35,000 it includes specialist consulting to optimize the architecture for particular workloads, together with hands-on training delivered on-site. The Discoverer package provides for deep integration and customization of storage and networking options.

"Organizations looking for best-practice Kubernetes now have a reference architecture and specialist consulting to operate Kubernetes on any cloud, bare metal, or virtualization," said Marco Ceppi, Canonical's product manager for Kubernetes, in a statement. "Canonical Kubernetes is transforming how our customers host scale out, cloud native workloads, with an emphasis on portability across public clouds and private infrastructure."

"The enterprise challenge is to enable containers across hybrid cloud environments," added Dustin Kirkland, Canonical's VP of Product. "Canonical's cloud partnerships provide choice of cloud infrastructure with a consistently secure and efficient Kubernetes across multiple clouds."

This new Canonical Kubernetes implementation serves as a shared platform for a wide range of partner offerings.

"Innovation is shifting up the stack, so we are delighted to partner with Canonical to enable enterprise serverless infrastructure on every cloud," said Anthony Skipper, Galactic Fog's CEO. "Galactic Fog on Canonical's Kubernetes provides a multi-cloud solution for serverless computing that is operable at scale and easy to integrate."

"Canonical's Kubernetes provides a modern, stable, efficient base for the best-in-class Rancher container management," added Nick Stinemates, Rancher Labs' VP of Business Development. "Our customers appreciate the business value of running container-optimized workloads in production, and seek to get there with as little friction as possible."

"Enterprises can cut through the complexity to discover the power of Kubernetes with Ubuntu's reference architecture and services," said Steve George, Weaveworks' COO. "Combining Canonical Kubernetes with Weave Cloud's comprehensive management and monitoring delivers a powerful and efficient platform for DevOps practitioners to deploy and operate sophisticated apps at scale, on any infrastructure."

Will all this work for Canonical, its partners, and their customers? I suspect it will. Canonical embraced Kubernetes early on; Ubuntu is already the operating system of choice for cloud virtual machines (VM)s; and the company also has a strong relationship with Docker. Kubernetes and Canonical will continue to rise together.

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