AWS re:Invent 2017 Keynotes and Container Update

There was a lot to follow this year in Las Vegas including the AWS re:Invent 2017 Keynotes. If you are looking for the highlights, take a look at the keynotes and news streams below. I will be catching up with them myself next week as time allows as this year’s event was filled with meetings and booth time from start to finish on each day.


I did get a chance to dig into the container news from this week as well as meet with the leadership of both the EKS and Fargate product and engineering teams. In my view, AWS made tremendous progress with not only a native Kubernetes offering but is also increasing the container agility model with their Fargate service offering.


First the keynote links:


Rewatch Andy Jassy’s keynote


Rewatch Werner Vogels’s keynote


Rewatch Peter DeSantis’s keynote


Read the blog posts from Jeff Barr and team

AWS and Google Made Kubernetes And Container News During re:Invent 2017

For those new to Kubernetes (K8s), it is open-source project started in 2014 by Google. Google has been the leading contributor to Kubernetes and Kubernetes has become a de facto development and deployment standard across cloud native architectures. Amazon has been the last major cloud provider to offer a primitive managed Kubernetes offering. An AWS announcement around Kubernetes has been widely anticipated by the public cloud markets at AWS re:Invent 2017.

According to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, 63% of Kubernetes workloads run on AWS. While AWS is a popular place to run Kubernetes, there’s still a lot of manual configuration that customers need to manage their Kubernetes clusters. Clients have to install and operate the Kubernetes master and configure a cluster of Kubernetes workers. In order to achieve high availability in your Kubernetes clusters, you have to run at least three Kubernetes masters across different AWS availability zones (AZs). Each master needs to be configured to talk to each, reliably share information, load balance, and failover to the other masters if one experiences a failure. Then once you have it all set up and running you still have to deal with upgrades and patches of the masters and workers software. This all requires a good deal of operational expertise and effort, and cloud clients like to outsource this undifferentiated heavy lifting to public cloud providers where they can.

First Kubernetes News Was From Google Cloud

As AWS re:Invent 2017 got going, we got the public cloud industry’s first Kubernetes news from Google and not AWS. Google made a proactive price cut from for their Google Kubernetes Engine on November 28.  Google Kubernetes Engine has now made the cluster management available at no charge, for any size cluster. This move was timed to steal some of the thunder from AWS’s anticipated Kubernetes offering as well as throw some shade towards AWS:

We’re committed to raising the bar on Kubernetes’ reliability, cost-effectiveness, ease-of-use and enterprise readiness, and continue to add advanced management capabilities into Kubernetes Engine. – (Google Cloud), Nov 28, 2017

AWS Announces Kubernetes and Changes Managed Containers Space with Fargate Offering

On November 29, it was AWS’s turn to share some Kubernetes and container news of their own. The first announcement introduced the cloud native community to Amazon EKS (Amazon Elastic Container Service for Kubernetes officially). Amazon EKS is a fully managed service that makes it easy for you to use Kubernetes on AWS without having to be an expert in managing Kubernetes clusters.

Amazon EKS runs the upstream version of the open-source Kubernetes software, so AWS clients can use all the existing plugins and tooling from the Kubernetes community. Applications running on Amazon EKS are fully compatible with applications running on any standard Kubernetes environment, whether running in on-premises datacenters or public clouds. This means that AWS clients can easily migrate your Kubernetes application to Amazon EKS with zero code changes. Amazon EKS automatically runs K8s with three masters across three AZs to protect against a single point of failure. This multi-AZ architecture delivers resiliency against the loss of an AWS Availability Zone. Amazon EKS also automatically detects and replaces unhealthy masters, and it provides automated version upgrades and patching for the masters. Amazon EKS is integrated with a number of key AWS features such as Elastic Load Balancing for load distribution, IAM for authentication, Amazon VPC for isolation, AWS PrivateLink for private network access, and AWS CloudTrail for logging.

aws re:invent 2017 keynotes

AWS Fargate Builds on EKS

Container orchestration solutions, like Amazon ECS and Amazon EKS make it easier to deploy, manage, and scale these container workloads increasing your agility. However, with each of these container management solutions cloud clients are still responsible for the availability, capacity, and maintenance of the underlying infrastructure. AWS Fargate is a different way to deploy your containers on AWS. Fargate is like EC2 but instead of giving you a virtual machine you get a container. It’s a technology that allows you to use containers as a fundamental compute primitive without having to manage the underlying instances. All you need to do is build your container image, specify the CPU and memory requirements, define your networking and IAM policies, and launch. With Fargate, you have flexible configuration options to closely match your application needs and you’re billed with per-second granularity. AWS plans to support launching containers on Fargate using Amazon EKS in 2018.

aws re:invent 2017 keynotes


Matthew Scott