Red Hat OpenShift vs Kubernetes: What’s the difference?

Share This Post

Openshift is an abstraction layer on top of kubernetes (k8s) and provides a useful UI that k8s lacks. As you may know, k8s is an orchestrator and requires your application packaged as an image. You can use docker to create your image though you are not limited and use other vendors like rocket etc for this purpose. You should take on a student’s perspective when learning, seeing as the initial understanding of ideas is one of the biggest barriers to learning not only containers and OpenShift but also Kubernetes. Utilize all the tools at your disposal, including blogs, YouTube, documentation, and any other online resources available to you.

  • In the past, code developed in one computing environment often resulted in errors and bugs when transferred to another environment.
  • While only 8% selected “very familiar,” and 15% chose “I’m not very familiar,” there was an array of different types of experience with Kubernetes represented by this question.
  • OpenShift only runs on special operating systems from Red Hat, such as “Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS” (RHCOS) and “Red Hat Enterprise Linux” (RHEL).
  • Explore the types of enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems available.

To allow external access to the system, Kubernetes uses Ingress objects which are more mature and have more features than the OpenShift equivalent ‘router’ objects. Kubernetes has an average of four releases each year, while OpenShift trails with around three. Similarly, Kubernetes supports several concurrent and simultaneous updates, while OpenShift DeploymentConfig does not.

Kubernetes features

It also boasts some unique features like shared secrets, config maps, auto-scaling and auto-healing of containers using cluster- and application-specific probes. The most preferred management utility for most professionals is OpenShift’s ImageStream. Instead, It offers you to set up a Docker image registry (like Docker Hub) and entices images from Docker’s registry. One such tool Docker pairs well with is DuploCloud, a DevOps Automation platform that helps to automate container configuration and orchestration.

  • In Docker, you execute commands and automation through a single API using a client-server architecture.
  • Docker containers incorporate default and advanced security mechanisms.
  • That’s one reason why comparable OpenShift alternatives have emerged.
  • It also adds additional features for deployment, such as integrated CI/CD pipelines and built-in rollback functionality.
  • The reality is that at most businesses, the architectures of the “important stuff” are rigid, well-known, and, well, important.

Around 70% of organizations are gearing up to adopt container-based development models as containers are the emerging miracle of this decade in the tech world. A recent survey concluded that many organizations are considering shifting towards container technology to address their foremost challenges. By default, OpenShift provides superior security features, hybrid/multi-cloud capabilities, dedicated customer support, and an easy-to-use web console for login.

#2. Deployment

Kubernetes uses YAML to define the resources sent to the API server for creating the actual application. Kubernetes offers a complex web-based interface, which is not generally recommended for novices. To access the interface, users need to first install the official Kubernetes Dashboard and then forward the port address of their local machine to the cluster server by using kube-proxy.


This architecture provides a foundation for building and deploying highly scalable and resilient applications. Solomon Hykes founded Docker in 2008, when it was formerly known as DotCloud. Docker also enables efficient management of applications and infrastructure, reducing the time it takes to move code from development to production. Docker’s streamlined processes for shipping, testing, and deploying code contribute to this accelerated workflow. Despite many large-scale organizations using containerized technology, there is often confusion surrounding Kubernetes, Docker, and OpenShift.

OpenShift also provides a Docker registry for managing and storing Docker images. Also, tools in OpenShift assist in building and deploying applications using Docker images. Kubernetes and OpenShift are both container orchestration platforms or Container-as-a-Service (CaaS) providers.

You can use external tools or scripts, but in most cases, Kubernetes users build images using the Docker build command. It uses software-defined networking (SDN) methods to provide a unified cluster network, supporting communication between pods in an OpenShift Container Platform cluster. docker vs kubernetes vs openshift This pod network is set up and maintained by OpenShift SDN, which uses Open vSwitch (OVS) to configure the overlay network. You can deploy, manage, and scale containerized applications with the aid of container orchestration platforms like Kubernetes, Docker Swarm, and OpenShift.

On the other hand, if you need an enterprise-grade solution with built-in developer tools, simplified management, and comprehensive support, OpenShift provides a more comprehensive offering. OpenShift builds upon Kubernetes and provides an enhanced platform with additional capabilities. It simplifies the deployment and management of Kubernetes clusters while adding enterprise features, developer tools, and security enhancements. Under the hood, OpenShift leverages the Kubernetes infrastructure.

Openshift vs Kubernetes: What is the Difference?

Kubernetes is an open-source project, while OpenShift is a product of Red Hat offerings. Comparing Kubernetes with OpenShift is like comparing an engine of a car with a car. This is because Kubernetes itself is the core part of the overall OpenShift architecture. ImageStream is ideal for workloads that require a self-deployment process based on the build of a new version.

It also provides simple mechanisms for changing image tags in a container registry. Kubernetes and OpenShiftb are most widely used container orchestration tool with there unique features and services. Kubernetes can helps in the deployment of the application by integrates with the CI/CD application and also can scale the application dynamically depending on the incoming traffic. On the other hand Openshift which is used for containerization of applications with the help of kubernets underneath which helps applications run more efficiently. The choice between Kubernetes and OpenShift depends on your organization’s specific requirements and goals. If you are looking for a robust and flexible open-source container orchestration platform and have the resources and expertise to manage and customize it, Kubernetes might be the right choice.

Kubernetes vs. Docker vs. OpenShift-FAQs

Each has advantages and disadvantages of their own, so it’s critical to select the best one for your requirements. OpenShift can be considered the distribution of a container platform that works with Kubernetes as the ‘kernel’. It offers consistent security, built-in monitoring, centralized policy management, and compatibility with Kubernetes container workloads. It’s fast, enables self-service provisioning, and integrates with a variety of 3rd party tools. By default, OpenShift uses the Docker runtime to run containers based on Docker images. In the software development industry , Kubernetes and Docker are the preferred platforms.

A more logical comparison would be Kubernetes vs Docker Swarm, Docker’s native clustering solution. Docker has since embraced Kubernetes and they are, in fact, offering their own integrated Kubernetes distribution in place of Docker Swarm as the default orchestration tool for Docker Enterprise. A Dockerfile describes how an app is packaged into an immutable container image, after which the Docker server runs the appropriate commands to build the image.

More To Explore