Consul vs Rancher: What are the differences?
What is Consul? A tool for service discovery, monitoring and configuration. Consul is a tool for service discovery and configuration. Consul is distributed, highly available, and extremely scalable.
What is Rancher? Open Source Platform for Running a Private Container Service. Rancher is an open source container management platform that includes full distributions of Kubernetes, Apache Mesos and Docker Swarm, and makes it simple to operate container clusters on any cloud or infrastructure platform.
Consul and Rancher are primarily classified as "Open Source Service Discovery" and "Container" tools respectively.
Some of the features offered by Consul are:
- Service Discovery - Consul makes it simple for services to register themselves and to discover other services via a DNS or HTTP interface. External services such as SaaS providers can be registered as well.
- Health Checking - Health Checking enables Consul to quickly alert operators about any issues in a cluster. The integration with service discovery prevents routing traffic to unhealthy hosts and enables service level circuit breakers.
- Key/Value Storage - A flexible key/value store enables storing dynamic configuration, feature flagging, coordination, leader election and more. The simple HTTP API makes it easy to use anywhere.
On the other hand, Rancher provides the following key features:
- Manage Hosts, Deploy Containers, Monitor Resources
- User Management & Collaboration
- Native Docker APIs & Tools
"Great service discovery infrastructure" is the top reason why over 49 developers like Consul, while over 89 developers mention "Easy to use" as the leading cause for choosing Rancher.
Consul and Rancher are both open source tools. Consul with 16.2K GitHub stars and 2.82K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than Rancher with 11.8K GitHub stars and 1.31K GitHub forks.
According to the StackShare community, Consul has a broader approval, being mentioned in 131 company stacks & 52 developers stacks; compared to Rancher, which is listed in 88 company stacks and 35 developer stacks.
What is Consul?
What is Rancher?
Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!
Sign up to add, upvote and see more prosMake informed product decisions
What are the cons of using Consul?
Sign up to get full access to all the companiesMake informed product decisions
Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions
- Consume too much unnecessary resource by just running rancher agent alone;
- Hard to recover from system failure
- Bad performance of load balancing (compare to dokcer swarm built-in LB or others).
The whole infrastructure is managed through Rancher. It provides a simple interface to all the underlying tools - Docker, HAProxy (automatically configures load balancer from the containers).
All our services use Consul for discovery, configuration and cluster management (auto scaling, health monitoring, dynamic reconfiguration, leader elections)
Currently looking to move to Swarm or Kubernetes due to a few issues I have with Rancher.
We use Rancher for container orchestration and automated deployment pipelines.