k3s vs Kubernetes

Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

k3s

44
162
+ 1
9
Kubernetes

34.6K
29K
+ 1
617
Add tool

k3s vs Kubernetes: What are the differences?

k3s: Lightweight Kubernetes. 5 less than k8s (by Rancher Labs). Certified Kubernetes distribution designed for production workloads in unattended, resource-constrained, remote locations or inside IoT appliances. Supports something as small as a Raspberry Pi or as large as an AWS a1.4xlarge 32GiB server; Kubernetes: Manage a cluster of Linux containers as a single system to accelerate Dev and simplify Ops. Kubernetes is an open source orchestration system for Docker containers. It handles scheduling onto nodes in a compute cluster and actively manages workloads to ensure that their state matches the users declared intentions.

k3s and Kubernetes can be primarily classified as "Container" tools.

Some of the features offered by k3s are:

  • ARM64 and ARMv7 support
  • Simplified installation
  • SQLite3 support

On the other hand, Kubernetes provides the following key features:

  • Lightweight, simple and accessible
  • Built for a multi-cloud world, public, private or hybrid
  • Highly modular, designed so that all of its components are easily swappable

k3s and Kubernetes are both open source tools. Kubernetes with 55.1K GitHub stars and 19.1K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than k3s with 7.81K GitHub stars and 483 GitHub forks.

Decisions about k3s and Kubernetes
Simon Reymann
Senior Fullstack Developer at QUANTUSflow Software GmbH · | 28 upvotes · 2.8M views

Our whole DevOps stack consists of the following tools:

  • GitHub (incl. GitHub Pages/Markdown for Documentation, GettingStarted and HowTo's) for collaborative review and code management tool
  • Respectively Git as revision control system
  • SourceTree as Git GUI
  • Visual Studio Code as IDE
  • CircleCI for continuous integration (automatize development process)
  • Prettier / TSLint / ESLint as code linter
  • SonarQube as quality gate
  • Docker as container management (incl. Docker Compose for multi-container application management)
  • VirtualBox for operating system simulation tests
  • Kubernetes as cluster management for docker containers
  • Heroku for deploying in test environments
  • nginx as web server (preferably used as facade server in production environment)
  • SSLMate (using OpenSSL) for certificate management
  • Amazon EC2 (incl. Amazon S3) for deploying in stage (production-like) and production environments
  • PostgreSQL as preferred database system
  • Redis as preferred in-memory database/store (great for caching)

The main reason we have chosen Kubernetes over Docker Swarm is related to the following artifacts:

  • Key features: Easy and flexible installation, Clear dashboard, Great scaling operations, Monitoring is an integral part, Great load balancing concepts, Monitors the condition and ensures compensation in the event of failure.
  • Applications: An application can be deployed using a combination of pods, deployments, and services (or micro-services).
  • Functionality: Kubernetes as a complex installation and setup process, but it not as limited as Docker Swarm.
  • Monitoring: It supports multiple versions of logging and monitoring when the services are deployed within the cluster (Elasticsearch/Kibana (ELK), Heapster/Grafana, Sysdig cloud integration).
  • Scalability: All-in-one framework for distributed systems.
  • Other Benefits: Kubernetes is backed by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), huge community among container orchestration tools, it is an open source and modular tool that works with any OS.
See more
Get Advice from developers at your company using Private StackShare. Sign up for Private StackShare.
Learn More
Pros of k3s
Pros of Kubernetes
  • 4
    Lightweight
  • 2
    Easy
  • 1
    Open Source
  • 1
    Scale Services
  • 1
    Replication Controller
  • 154
    Leading docker container management solution
  • 123
    Simple and powerful
  • 97
    Open source
  • 74
    Backed by google
  • 56
    The right abstractions
  • 24
    Scale services
  • 18
    Replication controller
  • 9
    Permission managment
  • 7
    Simple
  • 7
    Supports autoscaling
  • 6
    Cheap
  • 4
    No cloud platform lock-in
  • 4
    Reliable
  • 4
    Self-healing
  • 3
    Promotes modern/good infrascture practice
  • 3
    Open, powerful, stable
  • 3
    Quick cloud setup
  • 3
    Scalable
  • 2
    Runs on azure
  • 2
    Cloud Agnostic
  • 2
    Backed by Red Hat
  • 2
    Custom and extensibility
  • 2
    Captain of Container Ship
  • 2
    A self healing environment with rich metadata
  • 1
    Golang
  • 1
    Expandable
  • 1
    Everything of CaaS
  • 1
    Sfg
  • 1
    Easy setup
  • 1
    Gke

Sign up to add or upvote prosMake informed product decisions

Cons of k3s
Cons of Kubernetes
    Be the first to leave a con
    • 13
      Poor workflow for development
    • 11
      Steep learning curve
    • 5
      Orchestrates only infrastructure
    • 2
      High resource requirements for on-prem clusters

    Sign up to add or upvote consMake informed product decisions

    What is k3s?

    Certified Kubernetes distribution designed for production workloads in unattended, resource-constrained, remote locations or inside IoT appliances. Supports something as small as a Raspberry Pi or as large as an AWS a1.4xlarge 32GiB server.

    What is Kubernetes?

    Kubernetes is an open source orchestration system for Docker containers. It handles scheduling onto nodes in a compute cluster and actively manages workloads to ensure that their state matches the users declared intentions.

    Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

    Jobs that mention k3s and Kubernetes as a desired skillset
    What companies use k3s?
    What companies use Kubernetes?
    See which teams inside your own company are using k3s or Kubernetes.
    Sign up for Private StackShareLearn More

    Sign up to get full access to all the companiesMake informed product decisions

    What tools integrate with k3s?
    What tools integrate with Kubernetes?

    Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions

    Blog Posts

    +2
    2
    926
    Dec 8 2020 at 5:50PM

    DigitalOcean

    +11
    2
    1729
    +7
    3
    654
    May 21 2020 at 12:02AM

    Rancher Labs

    +12
    3
    1167
    Apr 16 2020 at 5:34AM

    Rancher Labs

    +2
    2
    756
    +14
    11
    2039
    What are some alternatives to k3s and Kubernetes?
    Kind
    It is a tool for running local Kubernetes clusters using Docker container “nodes”. It was primarily designed for testing Kubernetes itself, but may be used for local development or CI.
    Rancher
    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.
    Docker Swarm
    Swarm serves the standard Docker API, so any tool which already communicates with a Docker daemon can use Swarm to transparently scale to multiple hosts: Dokku, Compose, Krane, Deis, DockerUI, Shipyard, Drone, Jenkins... and, of course, the Docker client itself.
    Docker
    The Docker Platform is the industry-leading container platform for continuous, high-velocity innovation, enabling organizations to seamlessly build and share any application — from legacy to what comes next — and securely run them anywhere
    Docker Compose
    With Compose, you define a multi-container application in a single file, then spin your application up in a single command which does everything that needs to be done to get it running.
    See all alternatives