Mastering Rancher


Mastering Rancher


What Is Rancher? 

Rancher is an open-source container management platform that simplifies the deployment, scaling, and management of Kubernetes clusters. It provides a user-friendly interface, advanced features, and integrations with popular DevOps tools, making it easier for developers and administrators to manage and orchestrate containers in a Kubernetes environment.

Kubernetes vs. Rancher: What Is the Difference?  

Kubernetes is an open-source container orchestration platform that automates the deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. It is a powerful, yet complex system.

Rancher is an open-source container management platform built on top of Kubernetes. It simplifies Kubernetes cluster management, access control, and application deployment with a user-friendly interface and additional features.

Essentially, Kubernetes is the core orchestration platform, while Rancher is a management layer that enhances the user experience of working with Kubernetes. They are complementary technologies.

Learn more in our detailed guide to Kubernetes vs Rancher (coming soon)

Rancher Platform Features  

Infrastructure Orchestration

Infrastructure orchestration in Rancher refers to the process of automating the provisioning, management, and configuration of the underlying infrastructure that supports Kubernetes clusters. 

Rancher simplifies the setup and management of Kubernetes clusters across different cloud providers and on-premises environments. It supports popular cloud platforms like AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, and VMware, as well as custom nodes and clusters, making it easier to manage and scale infrastructure resources.

Container Orchestration

Rancher integrates with Kubernetes to provide an enhanced container orchestration experience. It streamlines the deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications, abstracting the complexities of Kubernetes through a user-friendly interface. 

Rancher enables users to manage multiple Kubernetes clusters, deploy applications using Helm charts, and monitor the health of their clusters and workloads. It also simplifies the management of networking, storage, and load balancing for containers.

Application Catalog

Rancher’s Application Catalog is a repository of pre-built application templates, including Helm charts and Rancher-specific templates, which simplify the deployment of containerized applications. 

Users can browse, configure, and deploy applications with just a few clicks, without needing to manually create and manage Kubernetes manifests. The catalog helps easily share applications across teams and organizations, improving collaboration and promoting best practices in application development and deployment.

Rancher Software

Rancher provides a suite of tools and services that complement the core Rancher platform to provide a comprehensive container management solution for Kubernetes environments. Some of the key software components include:

  • Rancher: The primary component, Rancher is the container management platform built on top of Kubernetes. It simplifies cluster management, access control, and application deployment, providing a user-friendly interface and advanced features to streamline Kubernetes operations.
  • RancherOS: A lightweight Linux distribution designed specifically for running containers. It minimizes the operating system (OS) footprint by running system services as containers, making it ideal for container-based environments. 
  • Longhorn: A cloud-native, distributed block storage solution for Kubernetes. Longhorn provides highly available and reliable storage for containerized applications, complete with automated backups, snapshotting, and replication capabilities. 
  • K3s: A lightweight Kubernetes distribution designed for edge computing, IoT, and resource-constrained environments. K3s is a fully conformant Kubernetes distribution that simplifies the deployment and management of Kubernetes clusters in scenarios where traditional Kubernetes may be too resource-intensive.
  • RKE (Rancher Kubernetes Engine): An enterprise-grade Kubernetes installer and management tool. RKE simplifies the process of deploying and upgrading Kubernetes clusters by automating much of the configuration and management tasks, making it easier for teams to maintain and operate their Kubernetes infrastructure.
Mastering Rancher


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