Rancher Labs Introduces Support for Multi-Cluster Applications

Rancher Labs, a provider of container management software, has announced support for multi-cluster applications within its open source Kubernetes management platform. With this support, Rancher customers can now deploy, manage, and upgrade applications simultaneously in multiple clusters, addressing enterprise requirements for reliability, security and high availability

“Rancher has made deployment and management of Kubernetes a breeze, and over the years we have added several new capabilities like RBAC, projects, and out-of-the-box monitoring to make it even simpler,” said Will Chan, co-founder and vice president of engineering.

As the number of users and clusters grow within an organization, for example in edge computing scenarios, the deployment, management, and upgrade becomes challenging to manage, Chan said. With Rancher’s support for multi-cluster apps, he added, Rancher can provide customers with tools to help alleviate the complexity and meet enterprise requirements.

According to Rancher, applications with high availability requirements must be deployed to multiple clusters to ensure reliability. Historically, this has been done by pulling nodes from other availability zones into the same cluster. However, if the cluster failed, the application would still become unavailable. Rancher’s support for multi-cluster applications is a significant step forward, solving this problem by allowing users to select the application and the target clusters, providing cluster specific data and then initiating deployment to those clusters.

With Rancher, the company says, multi-cluster applications work with Helm charts and are just as easy to use. Users can select the application from the Rancher Application Catalog, add target clusters, provide information about each cluster, and deploy. Multi-cluster applications use Kubernetes controllers running in the Rancher management plane to fetch Helm charts and deploy the application to each target cluster. The use of Helm charts allows Rancher to leverage features such as upgrades, rollbacks, and versioning of the application.

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