Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 3.11 is ready to power enterprise Kubernetes deployments

Red Hat announced this week Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 3.11, its comprehensive enterprise-based Kubernetes platform, which is generally available and ready for download.

OpenShift Container Platform 3.11 ships with Kubernetes 1.11, along with several notable features to better streamline Day 2 cluster and application operations. In short, Red Hat has improved central administration for clusters, environments, and users easier, while providing expanded Prometheus capabilities for gathering Kubernetes-native metrics.

Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform provides developers and IT organizations with a hybrid cloud application platform for deploying both new and existing applications on secure, scalable resources with minimal configuration and management overhead. OpenShift Container Platform supports a wide selection of programming languages and frameworks, such as Java, JavaScript, Python, Ruby, and PHP.

Built on Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Kubernetes, OpenShift Container Platform provides a more secure and scalable multi-tenant operating system for enterprise-class applications, while delivering integrated application runtimes and libraries. OpenShift Container Platform enables organizations to meet security, privacy, compliance, and governance requirements.

The latest release is based on OKD 3.11, and it uses Kubernetes 1.11. New features, changes, bug fixes, and known issues that pertain to OpenShift Container Platform 3.11, and is supported on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.4 and 7.5 with the latest packages from Extras, including CRI-O 1.11 and Docker 1.13. It is also supported on Atomic Host 7.5 and newer.

With integration of CoreOS, Red Hat was counting on improved expertise and leadership that would further refine and expand the enterprise Kubernetes platform. OpenShift Container Platform 3.11 is designed to deliver on converged roadmap plans with several newly-incorporated features.

While Red Hat OpenShift has a developer-friendly user console, with OpenShift Container Platform 3.11, Red Hat has enhanced with a more administrator-focused experience and based that in CoreOS Tectonic. This cluster console includes new views for Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform administrators to manage nodes, roles-based access controls, and other underlying cloud infrastructure objects. Both the application and cluster consoles will ship with OpenShift Container Platform 3.11.

With OpenShift, organizations are gaining a DevOps platform: developer teams can continue to view and access the services, containers, and deployment tools they need through the application console, while administrators can gain greater visibility to handle and monitor clusters, nodes, and users through the cluster console.

While the cluster console enhances visibility for IT, today’s deployments can still require scalable tooling for metrics collection, log aggregation, and alerting.

Prometheus, a CNCF project that collects time-series data as a source for triggering alerts, has emerged as a standard for cloud-native monitoring within Kubernetes. Red Hat (via CoreOS) spotted the potential for Prometheus early on, and now drives considerable upstream work for the project. In OpenShift Container Platform 3.11, Prometheus is GA for cluster monitoring.

OpenShift pre-configures a set of monitors and alerts for the Kubernetes control plane. Engineers have embedded their years of expertise running and troubleshooting Kubernetes for customers like UPS, Lufthansa Technik and Cathay Pacific. These include monitoring critical dependencies, which are sensitive to network and disk latency.

To help map cluster scaling to your usage, a set of control plane-focused alerts shows end-to-end scheduling latency, failed API operations, capacity planning views, and other important drill downs. The control plane is just one part of the cluster.

Red Hat is offering the Prometheus Operator as Developer Preview in OpenShift Container Platform 3.11 to enable engineering teams to configure and run their own monitoring services for their applications, with variable metric retention and other configurations to be specific to their needs.

Visibility into microservice and container native infrastructure performance can put more power in the hands of administrators. In addition to the cluster console, OpenShift Container Platform 3.11 ships with Grafana dashboards for greater visibility. Grafana is designed to help teams visualize and better analyze their time series data. Teams can review more detailed data about important metrics and the included alerts without getting bogged down in a complex query language or command console.

With the cluster console, Prometheus, and Grafana dashboards, OpenShift Container Platform customers get access to a broader view of their Kubernetes clusters’ performance, with the drill-down capabilities they may require.

With OpenShift Container Platform 3.11, Red Hat is offering a number of previews around Operators, which are Kubernetes-native applications and services. Operators encode the human operational knowledge normally required to help keep services running optimally, helping reduce manual work and execute best practices within milliseconds of an anomaly occurring, designed to return to the desired state defined for the system.

Red Hat also extended Operator capabilities to OpenShift in a preview capacity. In addition to Prometheus, etcd, and AMQ Streams Operators, Red Hat introduced the first set of Operators on OpenShift from our ISV partners. Partners have built these Operators using the Operator SDK, part of the Operator Framework project announced by Red Hat earlier this year.

As Red Hat worked to integrate CoreOS technologies into OpenShift, it learnt about a broader set of customers. While there is a set of companies that value the pluggable container infrastructure and developer lifecycle automation capabilities of OpenShift Container Platform, there is also a set which would prefer to use the advanced DevOps, networking, and management tooling and capabilities which they have already been using. For this segment, Red Hat is introducing OpenShift Container Engine. OpenShift Container Engine offers the same enterprise Kubernetes platform for which Red Hat and OpenShift are known, but excludes some of the extended capabilities of OpenShift Container Platform.


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