I recently had a need for a for a basic Kubernetes (k8s) Cluster which I also needed to have running locally in my vSphere Home Lab for testing purposes. I know there are a number of great blog articles out there that shows you how to setup your own k8s from scratch, including a recent blog series from Myles Gray. However, I was looking for something quick that I could consume without requiring any setup. To be honest, installing your own k8s from scratch is so 2017 😉
If you ask most people, they simply just want to consume k8s as an integrated solution that just works and not have to worry about installing and managing the underlying components that make up k8s. VMware PKS and PKS Cloud are two great examples of this where Pivotal and VMware provides a comprehensive solution (including Software Defined Networking) for managing the complete lifecycle (Day 0 to Day N) for running Enterprise K8s, whether that is within your own datacenter or running as a public cloud service. For my exploratory use case, PKS was overkill and I also did not have the required infrastructure setup in this particular environment, so I had to rule that out for now.
While searching online, I accidentally stumbled onto a recent VMware Open Source project called sk8s, short for Simple Kubernetes (k8s) which looked really interesting. At first glance, a few things stood out to me immediately. This project was created by none other than Andrew Kutz, for those not familiar with Andrew's work, he famously created the Storage vMotion UI plugin for the vSphere C# Client before VMware had native UI for the feature. He was also the creator of the first vCenter Simulator back in the day called simDK that was also widely used by a number of customers including myself. I knew Andrew had joined our Cloud Native Business Unit (CNABU), but I was not sure what he was up to these days, guess I now know 🙂 and is helping both VMware and the OSS community in k8s development.