Elastic Delivers Native Kubernetes Integration For Elasticsearch

The new Elastic Cloud on Kubernetes enables born-in-the-cloud and legacy enterprise customers to simplify Day 2 operations when scaling the popular web-scale search tool across Kubernetes clusters

Elastic, the company behind Elasticsearch and its associated ELK stack, Wednesday released an enterprise version of its popular search and analytics tool that's natively integrated with Kubernetes.

With Elastic Cloud on Kubernetes (ECK), enterprises and partners can leverage the leading container orchestration technology to deliver comprehensive search capabilities to their customers while easing the typical pains of life-cycle operations like scaling, upgrading and changing configurations.

ECK "is really Elastic's next step in how we continue to bring the Elastic Stack to where customers want to run it," Anurag Gupta, principal product manager at Elastic, told CRN.

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The Mountain View, Calif.-based startup, founded in the Netherlands in 2012, offers open-source and proprietary tools and cloud services, including its flagship Elasticsearch, that have been embedded into many web-scale applications by companies including Uber, Adobe, Walgreens and Tinder.

ECK can run on standard open-source Kubernetes, Red Hat OpenShift, or the Kubernetes platforms of the hyper-scalers: Google Kubernetes Engine, Azure Kubernetes Service and Amazon Kubernetes Service.

The solution automates Day 2 operations that often frustrate users deploying stateful applications on Kubernetes-orchestrated infrastructure, making it easier for partners to leverage Elasticsearch to deliver security and observability capabilities, Gupta said.

Native Kubernetes integration is an important step for the Dutch-American company that reached a big milestone in October 2018 when it went public amid surging demand for open-source software that's widely used to search data, applications and websites, as well as for logging, metrics, application performance monitoring and analytics.

Previously, Elastic offered Elastic Cloud, a commercial product deploying its software on AWS, Microsoft Azure or Google Cloud Platform. But many Elastic customers "live on the bleeding edge," Gupta said, and independently started running Elasticsearch and Kibana, a data visualization plugin, on Kubernetes.

The search technology vendor also has a large base of legacy enterprise customers that are not traditionally associated with micro-services, but that are now attempting to implement Kubernetes initiatives.

Deploying a stateful application, such as a database, in Kubernetes isn't hard. But once that application is up and running, upgrading, patching and changing configurations become a challenge.

Both sets of customers—legacy and cloud-native—looked to Elastic to provide a solution simplifying ongoing operations management when deploying Elasticsearch on Kubernetes-orchestrated infrastructure, Gupta said.

And Elastic isn't done. The company plans to implement "more of those first-class experiences orchestrating Elasticsearch" by adding components of the ELK stack (Elasticsearch, Logstash and Kibana), as well as "high-value enterprise features" to ECK as the product evolves, Gupta said

Elastic's embrace of Kubernetes has long been in the works. The company joined the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, which oversees the project, in 2018. At the same time, it released Elastic Helm Charts, natively supporting another open-source technology that enables users to create files that describe Kubernetes resources.