Mirantis Updates k0s Lightweight Kubernetes Distro
Mirantis, the Docker and Kubernetes developer company, has released the latest version of its lightweight, open source Kubernetes distribution, k0s. The new version boasts compatibility with the brand-new Kubernetes 1.27 release with various other improvements and bug fixes.
Back to Basics
K0s, for those that don’t know it, is one of several stripped-down, back-to-basics Kubernetes distros. Others include Minikube, k3s, and MicroK8s. While they all have their differences, the name of the game is to give developers the power to create Kubernetes clusters on low-end hardware. For example, K0s can run on as little as a single CPU and 1GB RAM for a single node.
The updated Mirantis k0s distribution significantly simplifies the installation and management process of Kubernetes clusters. One of the key enhancements includes support for containerd plug-ins, such as WebAssembly (WASM) and gVisor container sandboxes. This enhancement simplifies the running of these containers It also enables users to extend their clusters with additional container runtimes effortlessly.
Furthermore, to eliminate custom forks of project components and to ensure greater compatibility upstream Kubernetes functionality, Mirantis now provides its own system images, which in turn reduces complexity and improves security.
For one thing, many upstream Kubernetes system images contain Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE). For instance, Miska Kaipiainen, Mirantis VP Engineering, Strategy & Open Source Software, states that “If you scan a kube-proxy image at registry.k8s.io/kube-proxy:v1.25.8, you’ll see 12 vulnerabilities reported (or some other number, depending on the scanner you use).” Sure, many of these CVEs, such as old curl binaries and libs in the container, aren’t used at runtime. But you never know when that “harmless” CVE might turn out to be exploitable. So Mirantis takes full control of k0s images built with pure upstream functionality and doesn’t rely on any custom forks of project components.
The result? “As of this writing, system images shipping with k0s 1.27 come with zero (0) – yes, zero – known vulnerabilities. We have daily scanning in place, which lets us keep track of vulnerabilities as they pop up and mitigate them super-quickly.”
A Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF)-certified Kubernetes distribution, k0s, is versatile enough to run on any Linux-based operating system, making it suitable for large-scale data center deployments, lightweight edge clusters, laptops, and even Raspberry Pi. K0s is distributed as a single binary and can be installed on any node from the internet with a single command.
For ease of management, platform deployment, and scaling can be administered locally via the k0s command line interface (CLI) and remotely via the k0sctl utility using configuration files. The built-in k0s Autopilot enables you to manage updates automatically. Additionally, operators can access k0s clusters via kubectl, Lens Desktop, and other standard Kubernetes CLIs and dashboards.
So, if you want a safe, lightweight Kubernetes for your work, play, or study, I’d give K0s a try. It’s a nice little distro.