Best of 2021: What is the difference between Docker and Kubernetes? (2023)

To wrap up 2021, we at Container Journal wanted to highlight the most popular articles of the year. The following is the first in our best series of 2021.

The most commonly used tools in the modern cloud-native container ecosystem are Docker and Kubernetes. These two open platforms have allowed the container revolution to thrive thanks to the utility they provide and the openness of their communities. Although often used together, Docker and Kubernetes achieve different goals. This difference is critical to understanding how modern containers are built, deployed, and managed in production.

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The rise in container adoption has paralleled the rise of microservices. Containers are a useful way to package software for these applications because they isolate the code with any required runtime dependencies. But as the number of containers grows, managing them at scale becomes a hurdle. As such, DevOps engineers often implement standard tools to create containers and orchestrate their deployment to maximize efficiency and resource optimization.

For readers with short attention spans, TL; dr this is itDocker is all about building individual containerswhileKubernetes is all about managing and orchestrating large numbers of them.. That's the most basic thing we can do. Then we go beyond the basics to compare Docker and Kubernetes, examine their respective architectures, and weigh the pros and cons of each use.

What is Docker?

Best of 2021: What is the difference between Docker and Kubernetes? (2)Staueris a utility for packaging and running containers. Docker helps create standard containers that contain all the components needed to work in isolation, including code, dependencies, and libraries. Technically, Docker is more of a container management tool than a container format.

Developers typically interact with Docker using a command line interface (CLI) to communicate with the Docker client and run commands such asDocker-BuildÖrunning Docker. They are translated as API commands for the Docker daemon.Stauer, which tells the system to create the environment. A Docker registry stores Docker images, which are executable templates. As such, Docker containers are essentially instances of these images.Pilz coupledIt's a big public registry filled with lots of useful pre-built container images.

(Video) Importance of Docker and Kubernetes in Microservices Evolution | Learn in 3 minutes

Docker was first developed in 2013 and has been defining the modern container movement ever since. The Docker image format was donated as an open standard and is now known asOpen-Container-Initiative(OCI) Image Specification. When people talk about Docker containers, they usually mean Docker, the container packaging tool. This is not to be confused with Docker Inc., the company.

Pros and cons of Docker

There are many advantages to using Docker to build containers. One of them is portability: you can run these containers wherever you want, regardless of the host. Another advantage is security: Since individual containers run in their own namespace, they are very well isolated. Containers tend to fit well with agile development methodologies and increase the efficiency of CI/CD processes. Docker images can also be reused and shared across projects.

Because containers must be volatile, persistent data storage can be an issue. This is of course more of a problem with containers in general and not Docker specific. Docker is best suited for microservice-based applications and may not lend itself well to monolithic development. While Docker containers are relatively efficient, they inherently introduce additional layers that add overhead compared to applications running directly on a bare metal platform. Finally, containers present new security issues, so you need to look into themcommon vulnerabilities.

What is Kubernetes?

Best of 2021: What is the difference between Docker and Kubernetes? (4)Kubernetes, often abbreviated as K8s, is a robust and sophisticated set of tools designed to automate many tasks in the application lifecycle. The K8s is like the latest Tetris game: it chooses bay placement to optimize compute resources and "orchestrate" where those workloads end up. It also offers self-healing capabilities to automatically repair and restart containers when they fail.

understanding ofarchitectureKubernetes is a bit like peeling off the layers of an onion. All Kubernetes deployments have at least one cluster. A cluster contains nodes. Host these nodesDebt. These pods contain a number of working containers. A Kubernetes instance has a control plane to manage all of these components.

(Video) What is Docker? | Containerization Explained! | Why use Docker Container? (In Hindi)

This design may seem excessive, but it must provide the fault tolerance and high availability that Kubernetes promises. There are many other key K8 components at work here, includingkubectl, the CLI for managing Kubernetes clusters,Kube-Scheduler, which manages availability and performance, andBeletGenericName, the main agent running in each pod. Kubernetes can be installed on Linux, macOS or Windows or accessed via a web user interface orAPI-REST.

Best of 2021: What is the difference between Docker and Kubernetes? (5)

Initially developed as an internal tool called Borg at Google, K8s became open source in 2014.20 Container Orchestrator battles for teensKubernetes emerged victorious as the leading platform, overtaking Apache Mesos, Docker Swarm, andNomadic. Since then, K8s has been a graduate project of the CNCF2018.Important fact: There are eight letters between "K" and "s" in Kubernetes; hence the abbreviation K8s.

Pros and cons of the K8

Kubernetes is highly extensible and automates many common operations. It addresses the need for organizations to collaboratively orchestrate deployment of containers. But the K8s do more than that, they support service discovery, load balancing and offer reliability benefits. Kubernetes enjoys one toovibrant open source communitywhich correlates with and contributes to much of the co-building around the platformcompatible tools.

FullPossible disadvantages of using Kubernetes. It's good to remember that Kubernetes was born at Google and that Google powers billions of containers every week. They built the platform with enterprise-scale mass adoption in mind. So K8s might be overkill for smaller projects. Kubernetes also requires extensive initial training, and once up and running it can be a lot to maintain and upgrade over time, especially when it comes to managementmany groups.

As a result, a lot ofAntipatronos tun Kubernetesadoption plague.Stateful KubernetesMissions require a few extra maneuvers. Ultimately, K8s grant admins unrivaled power, howeverSecurity can sufferif permissions are misconfigured.

(Video) Kubernetes Vs Docker | Difference between Kubernetes and Docker | Kubernetes Training | Edureka

Docker vs Kubernetes: What's the Difference?

Both Docker and Kubernetes are open, cloud-native technologies. And leading cloud service providers support both Docker and Kubernetes components in their managed offerings. The difference between the two is that Docker is about packaging containerized applications on a single node and Kubernetes is about running them on a cluster. Because these packages perform different tasks, they are often used together.

Of course, Docker and Kubernetes can be used independently. While a large enterprise can benefit from Kubernetes and support its maintenance, a smaller project can benefit simply by adopting Docker. Or a company can use Docker or OCI containers with another container builder. Likewise, Kubernetes is most commonly used with Docker containers but can work with themother types of containersand execution times.

In 2020, Kubernetes announced thatDeprecated Docker container engine supportin favor of other container mechanisms like CRI-O and containerd. This removed Dockershim to reduce moving parts, but Kubernetes still supports OCI and Docker image formats and Docker registries.

final thoughts

Both Docker and Kubernetes emerged to meet the needs of microservice development. In this paradigm, teams need to iterate quickly and deliver highly available services to end users. Containers are an easy, scalable way to deploy these applications, but managing them at scale presents challenges.

The end result of migrating to modern container management platforms is faster deployment and cost savings. For example,Booking.com500 applications built on the platform in 8 months using Kubernetes. While utilities like the K8s involve a learning curve and present constant maintenance hurdles, they pave the way for a scalable future of container management.

(Video) Kubernetes vs Docker in Tamil | LMCS



Best of 2021: What is the difference between Docker and Kubernetes? ›

Docker is a container runtime that helps create and manage containers on a single system. While tools such as Docker Swarm allow orchestration of Docker containers across multiple systems, this feature is not a part of core Docker. Kubernetes manages a cluster of nodes, each running a compatible container runtime.

What is the main difference between Docker and Kubernetes? ›

While Docker is a container runtime, Kubernetes is a platform for running and managing containers from many container runtimes. Kubernetes supports numerous container runtimes including Docker, containerd, CRI-O, and any implementation of the Kubernetes CRI (Container Runtime Interface).

Which is better Kubernetes or Docker? ›

Kubernetes and Docker—better together

While the promise of containers is to code once and run anywhere, Kubernetes provides the potential to orchestrate and manage all your container resources from a single control plane.

Is Docker still relevant 2021? ›

Can I still use Docker for development? Yes, you absolutely can, now and in the foreseeable future. You see, Docker doesn't run Docker-specific images; it runs OCI-compliant containers. As long as Docker continues using this format, Kubernetes will keep accepting them.

Should I still use Docker with Kubernetes? ›

Can Kubernetes Run Without Docker? The answer is both yes and no. Kubernetes, in itself, is not a complete solution. It depends on a container runtime to orchestrate; you can't manage containers without having containers in the first place.

What is Kubernetes replacing Docker with? ›

With Docker removed, most Kubernetes administrators will migrate to something called containerd. They can choose other applications, such as CRI-O, but containerd is usually the common migration path.

Should I know Docker before Kubernetes? ›

Though it does need a container runtime, it doesn't always need to be Docker. You can use any other container runtime with Kubernetes to get the job done. In other words, Kubernetes can be used with Docker, but it is not mandatory to use the same container runtime.

What is replacing Docker? ›

Podman, a container engine developed by RedHat, is one of the most prominent Docker alternatives for building, running, and storing container images. Podman maintains compatibility with the OCI container image spec just like Docker, meaning Podman can run container images produced by Docker and vice versa.

Can I use Kubernetes without Docker? ›

You can decide to use Kubernetes without Docker, or even Docker without Kubernetes for that matter (but we advise you to use it for different purposes than running containers). Still, even though Kubernetes is a rather extensive tool, you will have to find a good container runtime for it – one that has implemented CRI.

What will replace Kubernetes? ›

Kubernetes Alternatives: Container as a Service (CaaS)
  • AWS Fargate. AWS Fargate is a serverless compute engine used in conjunction with Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS). ...
  • Azure Container Instances. ...
  • Google Cloud Run.

Is Docker worth learning 2023? ›

Hello devs, if you are looking to learn new tools and technologies in 2023 then you should consider learning Docker and Kubernetes, two of the most essential tools for creating and managing containers in this era of Microservices and Cloud Computing.

When would you not use Kubernetes? ›

While it is possible to have a monolithic application in one container, the container would require multiple processes. This isn't considered good practice — one container should only house one process. If you are not containerized, then Kubernetes is not for you … yet.

What are the disadvantages of Kubernetes and Docker? ›

As for the the disadvantages:
  • Kubernetes: More complex migrations. Complex installation and configuration process. Incompatible with existing Docker tools. Implementing a manual cluster is complicated.
  • Docker: It does not provide a storage option. Bad follow-up. No automatic reprogramming of inactive nodes.

What are the disadvantages of Docker? ›

Disadvantage of Dockers
  • Docker is not good for application that requires rich GUI.
  • It is difficult to manage large amount of containers.
  • Docker does not provide cross-platform compatibility means if an application is designed to run in a Docker container on windows, then it cannot run on Linux Docker container.
Apr 23, 2022

Is there anything better than Docker? ›

Formerly CoreOS Rocket, rkt is an application container engine suitable for cloud-native production environments. With its pod-native framework and pluggable execution environment, rkt integrates seamlessly with other systems, making it a top Docker alternative.

Why is Kubernetes preferred? ›

Advantages of Kubernetes

It has the ability to sustain and manage large and complex workloads. It has a large open-source community, backed by Google. Being open-source, it offers broad community support and the ability to handle varied, complex deployment scenarios.

Is Kubernetes going away? ›

Full removal is targeted in Kubernetes 1.24, in April 2022. This timeline aligns with our deprecation policy, which states that deprecated behaviors must function for at least 1 year after their announced deprecation.

Should I install Kubernetes or Docker first? ›

Enable Kubernetes

When you deploy a Kubenetes cluster you first install Docker (or another container runtime like containerd) and then use tools like kubeadm which starts all the Kubernetes components in containers. Docker Desktop does all that for you. That's it!

When shouldn t you use Docker? ›

Docker is great for developing web applications, but if your end-product is a desktop application, then we would suggest you not to use Docker. As it doesn't provide the environment for running the software with a graphical interface, you would need to perform additional workarounds.

What is easier to learn Docker or Kubernetes? ›

If you want to work with a containerized app without worrying about deployment issues, you need to start by learning Docker. If your goal is to keep multiple containerized apps up and running, Kubernetes is a great platform to take advantage of.

Is Docker becoming obsolete? ›

You do not need to panic.

TL;DR Docker as an underlying runtime is being deprecated in favor of runtimes that use the Container Runtime Interface (CRI) created for Kubernetes. Docker-produced images will continue to work in your cluster with all runtimes, as they always have.

Does Docker have a future? ›

The future of Docker Developers is very bright Docker is increasing day by day. Technology is vast and the demand for Docker software developers and programmers is also high in the market. Docker methodologies are itself changing with new tools and technologies coming in. It's a huge and fast-growing area.

Why Docker quit? ›

The main process inside the container has ended successfully: This is the most common reason for a Docker container to stop! When the process running inside your container ends, the container will exit. Here are a couple of examples: You run a container, which runs a shell script to perform some tasks.

Does Netflix use Kubernetes? ›

Kubernetes vs.

Netflix chronicled their container journey in a white paper. Running containers at scale requires orchestration, and Netflix started their journey near the beginning of the Kubernetes open source project.

What is the biggest problem with Kubernetes? ›

Security. Security is one of Kubernetes' greatest challenges because of its complexity and vulnerability. If not properly monitored, it can obstruct identifying vulnerabilities. When you deploy multiple containers, it's difficult to detect vulnerabilities.

Why is everyone moving to Kubernetes? ›

One of the fundamental reasons you can consider Kubernetes is that it is open-source. Kubernetes is the second largest open-source project after Linux. Many big companies and startups these days are moving to Kubernetes. Most major cloud providers have offerings on top of Kubernetes, like Amazon EKS, GKE, etc.

Does Kubernetes have a future? ›

Overall, the future of Kubernetes looks bright, and we can expect to see continued growth and innovation in the years ahead. Kubernetes is an open source container platform designed to automate deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications.

Will Docker stop being free? ›

Docker Desktop License Changes:

The docker desktop is free for personal use and small business. Enterprises working on a large scale require a paid subscription with three different plans (pro, team, business). It starts from $5 and goes to $21 per month. The changes are granted till January 31, 2022.

Can I learn Docker in a week? ›

Kubernetes, also known as K8s, is an open-source container orchestration tool for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Is Docker hard to learn? If you dedicate your time in learning such crucial skills and practice them accordingly, you could simply learn Docker in 30 days.

How many days required to learn Kubernetes? ›

If you add in lab time, reading, and exploring different ways to utilize Kubernetes, around 20 hours is a good enough timeframe to expect you'll be able to start working with Kubernetes in a work environment.

Why avoid Kubernetes? ›

Kubernetes is Expensive for Small Solutions

To take advantage of that, you need additional nodes — above the minimum amount required to run your applications. If a node is down, the requested pods will be relocated to the available nodes. For production workloads, at least three nodes are recommended for resiliency.

What is Kubernetes best for? ›

Kubernetes provides you with: Service discovery and load balancing Kubernetes can expose a container using the DNS name or using their own IP address. If traffic to a container is high, Kubernetes is able to load balance and distribute the network traffic so that the deployment is stable.

Why you don't need Kubernetes? ›

Managed Kubernetes providers take away much of the underlying configuration and integration, but some of the work will inevitably seep through to the developers, who'll need to have at least basic proficiency in Kubernetes to do their work properly. You don't need Kubernetes to run your applications.

What is the difference between Kubernetes and containers? ›

While the promise of containers is to code once and run anywhere, Kubernetes provides the potential to orchestrate and manage all your container resources from a single control plane. It helps with networking, load-balancing, security, and scaling across all Kubernetes nodes which runs your containers.

What is the difference between Docker and pod? ›

Kubernetes specifies that each pod should be able to freely communicate with every other pod in the cluster in a given namespace, whereas Docker has a concept of creating virtual network topologies and you have to specify which networks you want your containers to connect to.

What is the basic of Docker and Kubernetes? ›

Docker is a platform for packaging, deploying, and running applications in containers. Kubernetes is a system for managing containerized applications across a cluster of nodes. It provides basic mechanisms for deployment, maintenance, and scaling of applications.

What is the difference between Docker Kubernetes and terraform? ›

These two tools share some similarities but are built to serve different purposes. Terraform is a tool focused on infrastructure provisioning and operates in the Infrastructure as code space. Kubernetes focuses on running container workloads and operates in the container orchestration space.

What is the advantage of container and Kubernetes? ›

Kubernetes services provide load balancing and simplify container management on multiple hosts. They make it easy for an enterprise's apps to have greater scalability and be flexible, portable and more productive. In fact, Kubernetes is the fastest growing project in the history of open-source software, after Linux.

Can Kubernetes only use Docker containers? ›

Kubernetes is most commonly used with Docker, but it can also be used with any container runtime. RunC, cri-o, containerd are other container runtimes that you can deploy with Kubernetes.

What is Kubernetes in simple words? ›

Kubernetes is a portable, extensible, open source platform for managing containerized workloads and services, that facilitates both declarative configuration and automation. It has a large, rapidly growing ecosystem. Kubernetes services, support, and tools are widely available.

What are the two types of Docker? ›

There are three common Docker network types – bridge networks, used within a single host, overlay networks, for multi-host communication, and macvlan networks which are used to connect Docker containers directly to host network interfaces.

Why do we use pods instead of containers? ›

Moving down a level in the hierarchy, Kubernetes pods are an abstraction over generic containers. Kubernetes pods are collections of containers that share the same resources and local network. This enables easy communication between containers in a pod. The lifecycle of a pod is tied to its host node.

Why Kubernetes use pods instead of containers? ›

Why does Kubernetes use pods? The relationship of pods to clusters is why Kubernetes does not run containers directly, instead running pods to ensure that each container within them shares the same resources and local network.

Can Kubernetes work without Docker? ›

You can decide to use Kubernetes without Docker, or even Docker without Kubernetes for that matter (but we advise you to use it for different purposes than running containers). Still, even though Kubernetes is a rather extensive tool, you will have to find a good container runtime for it – one that has implemented CRI.

What are containers and Kubernetes for dummies? ›

Kubernetes container/container-runtime is a system for automating the deployment, scaling and management of containerized applications. It provides an easy way to manage and monitor your containers, making it ideal for running production workloads in the cloud.

Does AWS use Docker or Kubernetes? ›

They use Kubernetes to manage multiple microservices at scale. Each microservice is individually made up of multiple containers itself.


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