Kubernetes is Google's open-source program that enables companies to manage a cluster of Linux containers as if they were a single system. While container technologies, such as Docker, enable you to create and manage containers, Kubernetes enables you to orchestrate and manage clusters of containers and virtual machines (VM)s. This is proven technology. Every Google application you run, even search, runs on containers managed by Kubernetes.
Tectonic will be the commercial distribution of CoreOS, its containers, and Kubernetes. It's designed to deliver a complete enterprise software stack for businesses transitioning to a distributed, container-based software infrastructure. You can try to combine Kubenetes, CoreOS, and Docker on your own, but if you'd rather focus on doing your job, CoreOS's Tectonic looks to be the better way to invest your time.
As Alex Polvi, CEO of CoreOS, said in a statement, "When we started CoreOS, we set out to build and deliver Google's infrastructure to everyone else. Today, this goal is becoming a reality with Tectonic, which allows enterprises across the world to securely run containers in a distributed environment, similar to how Google runs their infrastructure internally."
CoreOS isn't just taking Google's code and building Tectonic on its own. CoreOS has also announced a $12 million investment round led by Google Ventures, Google's venture capital division. The company is also getting additional investment from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), Fuel Capital, and Accel Partners, for a total new round of funding to $20 million.
"We see a broader industry trend where enterprise computing is shifting to mirror the infrastructure of large-scale software companies," said Dave Munichiello, Partner at Google Ventures in a statement. "With a focus on security, reliability, and ease of deployment, CoreOS delivers a comprehensive platform for global enterprises to deliver services at scale. We are excited to be working with the team."
CoreOS will be offering Tectonic to a select set of beta customers. The full enterprise solution includes an integrated Linux container platform and a deployment automation tool. The Linux container platform includes a server operating system, container runtime and networking, a cluster management console with a browser-based user interface, and Kubernetes.
Stephen O'Grady, Principal Analyst with RedMonk, thinks this is a good move. "With a flood of choices to make in developer infrastructure and more arriving by the day, the demand for opinionated infrastructure that makes sensible choices is growing -- particularly in the container space. This is the challenge that Tectonic was built for, to provide an integrated container-based solution."
CoreOS isn't the only company integrating Kubernetes into its products. Mirantis, an OpenStack company; Mesosphere, with its own cluster manager; and Red Hat with Atomic Host are all at work bringing Kubernetes into their cloud/container offerings. Victory will go to the company that does the best job of bringing Kubernetes to market.