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Cloud Native Ecosystem / Kubernetes

Red Hat OpenShift 4.9’s Single Node Clusters for the Edge

Open source enterprise software provider Red Hat has released both Red Hat OpenShift 4.9 and Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes 2.4 during this week's KubeCon+CloudNativeCon North America.
Oct 13th, 2021 7:32am by
Featued image for: Red Hat OpenShift 4.9’s Single Node Clusters for the Edge

Open source enterprise software provider Red Hat has released both Red Hat OpenShift 4.9 and Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes 2.4 during this week’s KubeCon+CloudNativeCon North America.

Both releases, the company said in a statement, are “designed to drive consistency of the open hybrid cloud to the furthest reaches of the enterprise network” and Stu Miniman, director of market insights at Red Hat, echoed the sentiment, calling the release “the culmination of what we’ve been working on for OpenShift at the edge for the last two years.”

Red Hat OpenShift 4.9, which incorporates Kubernetes as an enterprise platform, not only brings with it Kubernetes 1.22, but also introduces a single node OpenShift, which combines control and worker capabilities into a single server. The single node server is a third option for edge deployment of OpenShift, joining the three-node clusters and remote worker nodes released over the last two years, and offering an option for environments that may experience lapses in connectivity, as there is no requirement for a central Kubernetes control plane.

Miniman explained that each of the deployment options offered pros and cons compared to the others. The three-node clusters offer a relatively small but highly available footprint, while the remote worker nodes are for more space-constrained environments, while the new single-node option is best for situations where connectivity is limited.

While the single node scenario does not offer high availability, it does continue operating while offline and syncs back up when it becomes connected again.

Another benefit to these edge deployments, which Miniman emphasized are full OpenShift deployments for edge endpoints and not edge devices, is a potential cost savings.

“From a pricing standpoint, when customers are doing this at scale, there are some cost implications for the edge solutions where we can make it more cost-effective,” said Miniman. “If you’re doing hundreds or thousands of nodes you’re going to be using a lot less resources there than you would main deployments.”

Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management was first released during the company’s 2020 Red Hat Summit, before becoming generally available at last year’s KubeCon Europe, and now, Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management 2.4, which now manages all three types of edge OpenShift deployments, introduces several new features.

First, Advance Cluster Management 2.4 doubles its previous capacity from 1,000 to 2,000 clusters on a single hub with IPv6 dual-stack support for the managed fleet, which is available now in technology preview.

Next, Advance Cluster Management 2.4 gets hub-side policy templating to make it easier to manage high-scale deployments by applying a single policy to varied cluster scenarios. Miniman explained that these are called Validated Designs and “aren’t simply ‘here’s some best practices,’ it is code available on GitHub, that allows you to scale using GitOps operational practices.”

Finally, Advance Cluster Management 2.4 adds a technology preview for zero-touch provisioning, which enables the remote provisioning of a server without needing someone to go turn on the server and manually initiate the provisioning process. Instead, zero-touch provisioning includes remote power on, booting over the network, download of necessary configuration, installation, and finally a report back to the central management system that the server is online and ready for workloads.

While Red Hat is announcing these new platforms during Kubecon, Red Hat OpenShift 4.9 is expected to be generally available later this month, while Advance Cluster Management 2.4 is expected for November.

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