Kubernete’s agnostic. SUSE-powered. Rancher 2.6

Kubernetes-agnostic Rancher takes a turn for the interesting as it releases Rancher 2.6 under new SUSE management.

Johannesburg, 07 Jun 2021
Read time 2min 20sec

Rancher has grown to prominence as a market leader thanks to its ability to provide organisations with a comprehensive Kubernetes management software stack at a time when containerisation and clusters were becoming increasingly popular, and complex. The company developed a cluster management programme that met with strong user and critical approval thanks to its ability to manage Kubernetes clusters across hybrid clouds, centralising monitoring and authentication. It was Kubernetes, with added value, allowing for companies to deploy their clusters across multiple platforms, from public cloud to bare metal, to virtual machines, to almost everything in between.

The value of Rancher lay in its customisation capabilities, its open source roots and its support of any Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF)-certified Kubernetes distribution, including Google GKE, Amazon EKS and Microsoft AKS. It’s a stack that’s almost as tasty as pancakes, but with far more scope for customisation and zero vendor lock-in. A proven toolkit, Rancher has more than 37 000 active users and was acquired by SUSE mid-2020; now mid-2021, the first SUSE version of Rancher is about to be released.

Rancher 2.6 is the SUSE’s Kubernetes distro muscle, introducing a user-friendly interface designed to simplify the management of Kubernetes clusters and working seamlessly with the SUSE Container-as-a-Service (CaaS) platform. It brings a richer life cycle management system to Microsoft AKS, CaaS and Google GKE, while adding to its existing Amazon EKS support. The Podman-based SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 SP3 will also be supported by the new release, and has some changes of its own with SUSE Linux Enterprise Base Container Images that provide flexible and secure container images and application development tools.

While the source code is still not complete, likely setting the date for the release at spring 2021, it will include the full weight of Rancher’s capabilities, plus the SUSE depth of expertise, in its final product. Rancher’s native Helm and app catalogue will remain fully updated and capable, and Rancher 2.6 will continue to deliver an enterprise-level command centre that drives agility and scale, alongside ease of use.

The two companies – Rancher and SUSE – have put their open source minds together to focus on developing a solution that’s as capable of coping with mission-critical workloads and delivering next-level capabilities as ever, if not more so. While there’s still a wait for the new release, updates can be found on GitHub with the latest status, as of 4 May, sitting at 58% complete. 

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