snapblocs vs. Other Managed Kubernetes Platforms

snapblocs vs. Other Managed Kubernetes Platforms

Most Kubernetes platforms focus on the how of deploying and managing Kubernetes-based infrastructure. What remains, is the task of building business solutions from there.
snapblocs also provides this same managed Kubernetes enablement, as do other leading Kubernetes platforms, but it takes it a step further with its architecture as a service model reducing the time to value even further.

Platform blueprints can be leveraged to deliver complete functional data platform solutions consisting of stacks and components via its Kubernetes platform. snapblocs provides operational tooling and enablement as well as design and architecture capabilities.

Key Functionality
Other Kubernetes Platforms 
snapblocs Kubernetes+ Platform
Kubernetes based
Y
Y
Pause, resume, clone and move stack 
N
Y
Observability
Y (K8S only)
Y+ (K8S + Components)
Add your own components
Manual
UI
Platform blueprints (complete solution stacks)
N
Y
Integrate open source components 
Manual / Custom
Platform blueprints & UI
Component configuration 
Manual
UI or Manual
Current Kubernetes container platforms
There are several open-source and commercial software products that provide a container platform for Kubernetes that can automate the provisioning, management, and scaling of applications.
For example, VMware Tanzu, Google Anthos, Red Hat OpenShift, platform9, and rancher are managed Kubernetes platforms used to easily find and install 3rd party applications.

Containers are the vehicle, not the end game
Other managed Kubernetes platforms focus on the deployment and management aspects only requiring their end users to design their end solution. It is more of a tooling mindset. snapblocs also provides that same tooling but through its Architecture as a Service model provides platform blueprints that represent complete functional data platform solutions.

Component integration
Existing Kubernetes platforms focus on the deployment of custom-designed software components or 3rd party components. They do not provide an easy way to integrate them into a cohesive solution nor do they help in the design process.

Building a higher-level business solution from them requires research to determine what software is needed as well as the knowledge to know how to configure and integrate all the pieces. Also, a lot of the configuration tends to be manual with the potential for errors and poor repeatability. Lastly, observability solutions must also be researched, installed, and configured.

For instance, a data lake platform use case requires identifying what software is needed and spending a lot of time learning how to install and manually configure the platform (this includes Kafka for data ingestion, Spark for data aggregation, Airflow for job scheduler, Data Catalog Metadata Management, Security, Observability, Alerting, Data Access layer, etc..)

Instead, the snapblocs, Architecture as a Service capability, provides a selection of integrated and well-designed platform blueprints to choose from (this includes a Data Flow platform, Data Lake platform, Data Analytics platform, Enterprise Data platform, etc.)

Work at any level with snapblocs which offers the same functionality as other managed Kubernetes platforms. Start anywhere from a low-level design of custom components to a platform blueprint or a mix of both.

This makes it much easier to configure, build, operate, upgrade and promote a data platform by starting with a snapblocs Architecture Blueprint and it removes the need for manual and complex integration/configuration.

Additional lifecycle management
snapblocs provides the entire lifecycle management of stacks, not just deploy and teardown. The entire lifecycle management includes: 
Clone and move
Once a stack has been configured for one project, an authorized user can easily clone the stack configuration to a different project and then update the configuration (such as cluster parameters and target environment settings). The new cloned stack can then be deployed to staging or production environments. 
Stacks can also be moved across projects while retaining their original configuration. 

Benefits of clone and move
  • With a build once, deploy anywhere approach, it is significantly more efficient to clone a stack so that the same Platform blueprint can easily be deployed from development to production. 
  • Cloning enables the reuse of the same skillsets for development and operations no matter where the stack is built and deployed.
  • Spend more time trying to solve issues within key business applications, vs replicating platform infrastructure and troubleshooting. For example, debug production problems by cloning the production stack into isolated environments. Install production business applications into the cloned production stack in order to debug the production problems, while not impacting the production stack. 
  • Significantly reduce errors when promoting applications from lower to upper environments, through templated deployment, using the clone or move features within snapblocs. 
Resume and Pause
Teardown any stack that doesn’t need to keep running. All data and configurations will be terminated. 

Pause any stack without destroying the data or configuration. Pausing a stack saves cloud provider costs and the stack can be deployed again when needed without having to rebuild the stack. 

For this use case, use the snapblocs pause and resume features, instead of the teardown.

Once a stack is in a paused state, all Kubernetes worker nodes will be released (0 worker nodes) except for the control plane. During the paused state, all EC2 nodes will be terminated and no stack components or business applications will be accessible, as those Kubernetes worker pods were terminated. The storage volumes will remain so that no data will be lost during the paused state. When a stack is resumed those volumes will be attached to newly created worker nodes (running containers for the application, data, and stack components).

Benefits of pause and resume
  • Save computing cost by terminating all EC2 instances 
  • Save effort and time by resuming a paused stack instead of rebuilding a stack from scratch and reloading business applications and data
  • Protect data by terminating applications when not in use
Summary
  • snapblocs Kubernetes platforms = managed Kubernetes functionality + platform blueprints
  • Manage solution stacks and not just individual deployments
  • Experience powerful features like pause, resume, clone, and move the stack

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