Kubernetes in Juju

Juju supports both traditional machine clouds as well as Kubernetes clouds. If you are familiar with Kubernetes, there’s a mapping between Kubernetes and Juju concepts:

Kubernetes Juju
namespace model
node machine; Juju does not manage this for Kubernetes
pod unit
container process in a unit
service application

The rest of this document expands on this mapping.


Namespace and Model

Both namespaces and models allow for the aggregation of a set of resources into a common “context”. However, a model must be part of a Juju cloud, whereas a namespace is not part of any higher grouping; there is not an equivalent concept of a cloud on Kubernetes.

Node and Machine

While nodes and machines are equivalent in definition (a physical or virtual machine where you can run a workload on), Juju does not internally represent nodes as machines. Instead, it delegates the work of handling nodes to the Kubernetes cluster, and only manages pods directly.

Pod and Unit

Pods and units are essentially the same, since they deploy code into a container or process. However, units in an application will always have a leader unit, which will be the unit handling the lifecycle of the application. Pods lack this functionality, meaning you would need to manually implement leader election to enable this type of pod architecture in Kubernetes.

Service and Application

Both similar in concept, services and applications allow the integration of other services/applications within the cluster and can also be exposed to enable access from the external world to the cluster. A key difference is that applications can be automatically integrated with other applications, provided that the applications’ endpoints are compatible with each other. On the other hand, the integration between services must be done manually, using the services’ IP addresses or DNS names as their integration points.

Contributors: @anvial, @jedel , @tmihoc

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