Kubernetes vs Docker: What’s the difference?

Kubernetes vs Docker: What’s the difference?

You use Docker for packaging and shipping applications and working with a single node. Meanwhile, Kubernetes deploys and scales applications across a cluster of nodes. Furthermore, Kubernetes only manages containers, requiring separate software to build them. Containerization technology has become an essential aspect of modern applications. Container platforms such as Docker and container orchestration engines such as Kubernetes complement each other, working together to simplify container management.

The term “container” and “Docker” are often used interchangeably, but Docker is the technology behind containers and the engine that runs them. It’s almost impossible to avoid finding Docker references when researching containerization, because Docker is the dominant technology on the market. The distributed nature of containerized applications means that our old troubleshooting strategies won’t work anymore. Kubernetes and Docker can allow for additional resiliency, but they also introduce new failure points which may be obfuscated by the abstraction. Best for complex and enterprise-scale development projects and can be overkill if you’re working on something of a smaller scale. If you don’t need the additional scaling and resiliency of Kubernetes, using it may not be worth the additional cost and complexity.

What is Docker and Kubernetes?

Docker and Kubernetes are mostly complementary technologies—Kubernetes and Docker. However, Docker also provides a system for operating containerized applications at scale, called Docker Swarm—Kubernetes vs Docker Swarm. Let’s unpack the ways Kubernetes and Docker complement each other and how they compete.

  • It handles the access and authentication of the other components.
  • While multiple containerization technologies exist, Dockerremains the most popular and widely known.
  • It provides a platform-agnostic way to run, scale, and manage numerous containers simultaneously in either physical, virtual, or hybrid environments.
  • First, we will discuss exactly what containerization is and then we will dive into the benefits of each solution.

However, Kubernetes’ complexity is overwhelming for a lot of people jumping in for the first time. Kubernetes can scale up and scale down based on traffic and server load automatically. Kubernetes provides a broader range of options, such as a combination of namespaces, pods, and deployments. Docker Swarm applications are services or microservices you can deploy using YAML files or Docker Compose. It can sustain and manage large architectures and complex workloads.


In order to create, execute, and manage containers Docker uses a client-server architecture in which the client interacts with the Docker daemon. The hard work, such as creating the image, starting and stopping containers, and controlling the network and storage for containers, is handled by the Docker daemon. Kubernetes, often known as K8s, is an open-source platform for automating containerized application deployment, scaling, and administration. It was created by Google and it has subsequently been adopted by numerous enterprises because to its capacity to handle large-scale, multi-node installations. Since its initial release in 2015, Kubernetes has been widely adopted, and at this point, has become the de facto standard for container management and orchestration. Kubernetes provides an infrastructure-level framework for orchestrating containers at scale, and for managing user interaction with them.

What is Kubernetes vs Docker

In fact, in many cases, Docker and Kubernetes are used together across DevOps pipelines. However, in addition to the Docker platform, the company Docker, Inc. also offers Docker Swarm which is a container orchestration tool comparable to Kubernetes. In fact, container technologies were available for decades prior to Docker’s https://globalcloudteam.com/ release in 2013. In the early days, Linux Containers were the most prevalent of these. Docker was built on LXC, but Docker’s customized technology quickly overtook LXC to become the most popular containerization platform. One way to understand the concept of a container is to compare it to avirtual machine .

Disadvantages of Kubernetes

The Docker engine provides app isolation on a per-container level. This feature allows multiple applications to exist side-by-side on a server without the risk of possible conflicts. It also improves security by keeping the application isolated from the host. Docker and Kubernetes kubernetes development are two complementary technologies that, when used together, form a complete containerization ecosystem. While Docker provides the tools to create, package, and run containers, Kubernetes excels in orchestrating these containers across a distributed infrastructure.

What is Kubernetes vs Docker

Docker is a suite of tools for developers to build, share, run and orchestrate containerized apps. Kubernetes monitors the running environment and compares it against the desired state. It performs automated health checks on services and restarts containers that have failed or stopped. Kubernetes only makes services available when they are running and ready. After reading this comparison article, you should understand the fundamental difference between Kubernetes and Docker. The article also highlighted how Kubernetes and Docker help each other in the application development process.

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In addition, a number of monitoring tools are supported to monitor other objects like nodes, containers, Pods, etc. The master node can span across multiple nodes but can run only on one computer. It is recommended that you avoid creating application containers on the master node.

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Docker and Kubernetes are compelling technologies, and they serve very different purposes. If you are new to the container world, I suggest getting started with Docker and deploying basic applications using docker containers. Google developed it and, in 2015, open-sourced it to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation. Monitoring is now a fundamental aspect of application lifecycle management. Kubernetes supports the integration of various monitoring dashboards to provide robust monitoring and rapid alerting mechanisms for swift incident response.

Should I Migrate from Docker Compose to Kubernetes?

All container deployments, scaling, and scheduling to the correct node in the cluster may be handled by Kubernetes. It automates all of the time-consuming tasks like creating containers and placing them on servers, configuring containers, checking container health, and managing access to resources like memory and CPU. This puts it in a category of software called container orchestration tools. In organizations, multiple numbers containers running on multiple hosts at a time so it is very hard to manage all the containers together we use Kubernetes. This is an open-source platform for managing containerized workloads and services. Kubernetes takes care of scaling and failover for your application running on the container.

What is Kubernetes vs Docker

This not only allows an application to run quickly but also makes it portable and easy to transfer from one environment to another. In 2020, Kubernetes announced it would deprecate support for the Docker container engine in favor of other container engines like CRI-O and containerd. This removed the Dockershim to reduce moving parts, but Kubernetes still supports OCI and Docker image formats as well as Docker registries. For those readers with short attention spans, the TL;DR is that Docker is about building individual containers while Kubernetes is about managing and orchestrating large numbers of them.

Can you use Docker without Kubernetes?

Any conventional application will use a database to store user data, a framework to add new features, and a programming language to hold it all together. Now, imagine having to deal with all these dependencies on your system and push the new changes to the main server—every single time. Docker comes to the rescue here, by streamlining the container creation process. One is portability—you can run these containers wherever you want, no matter the host.