Many enterprise IT organizations are looking for ways to bring the agility and scale of cloud infrastructures to their on-prem and hybrid applications. Kubernetes-based container orchestration platforms help software developers to develop, deploy and manage software in a structured way with unmatched scale and pace. As you adopt Kubernetes-based infrastructures for your organization, you must also consider how to protect the data your Kubernetes applications rely on. Here are several important factors to keep in mind:
- Application granularity
A backup solution for Kubernetes should be application focused. You should be able to pick up a specific application, or a group of applications (e.g., in a namespace) to back up, recover, or clone. Many existing solutions typically backup an entire virtual machine (VM) or an entire Kubernetes cluster. This results in significantly higher resource consumption and longer latencies for both backup and recovery operations. Also, recovering any one application results in resetting all the other applications in a VM or a Kubernetes cluster. Modern cloud-native applications running on Kubernetes require an application-level backup and recovery granularity.
- Storage efficiency
Modern cloud-native applications running on Kubernetes typically leverage persistent enterprise-class storage to store their state and data. Most enterprise-class storage vendors have built-in storage efficiencies that can easily identify changed blocks between snapshots and support transfer protocols to transmit only these changed blocks to other storage endpoints. Kubernetes-based backup solutions must take advantage of these modern storage systems’ capabilities for efficient snapshot differencing while replicating to remote Kubernetes clusters. This would result in each backup taking less space, completing in a shorter amount of time, and being a lot more economical to back up frequently.
- Platform support
Another important criterion while considering a business continuity solution is that it should be capable of working across various Kubernetes distributions and storage solutions. An ideal solution should work across different Kubernetes platforms like EKS, GKE, Anthos, and Openshift. It should natively integrate with a plethora of storage vendors. Such a backup solution allows customers the flexibility to put together a heterogeneous solution that fits their business needs.
- Deployment flexibility
The majority of enterprises today have IT solutions that span both on-premise and cloud to best satisfy the security, cost, and efficiency needs of their organization. Any business continuity solution for Kubernetes should be easily deployable both on-premise and in the cloud.