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Future of Amazon EKS

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Kubernetes, a container orchestration platform, has become dominant in modern IT operations. This blog post explores the reasons behind Kubernetes’ surge in popularity and dives into Amazon’s significant investment in Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS). We’ll examine the benefits organizations gain from using Kubernetes and the various use cases for Amazon EKS. Finally, we’ll explore AWS’s goals for Kubernetes’ future and how they support the technology.

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Why do people use Kubernetes?

  • Driving Innovation: The primary reason organizations turn to Kubernetes is to innovate on behalf of their customers. The ability to move quickly and make changes safely and rapidly is crucial for innovation. Kubernetes provides a standardized system and set of standards for development teams, allowing organizations to embrace change and drive better innovations for their users.


  • Reducing Fixed Expenses: Another key motivator for adopting Kubernetes is the desire to reduce fixed expenses. Organizations transition from static resources to dynamic shared resources using containers, breaking down complex contracts and lowering management overhead. This shift results in cost savings while maintaining flexibility and scalability.


  • Enabling the Entire Organization: Kubernetes offers an API standard for orchestrating applications, providing a common ground for diverse environments. Whether running in different regions of the AWS cloud, on-premises, or on other cloud providers, Kubernetes allows organizations to consistently establish best practices, governance controls, security measures, monitoring, and cost management across all deployment locations. This standardization enables organizations to manage complexity, even in scenarios involving acquisitions, mergers, or multi-cloud setups.


  • Planning for the Future and Reducing Risk: Kubernetes addresses immediate operational needs and aids in planning for the future and reducing risks. Standards provided by Kubernetes support long-term development efforts and mitigate tech debt, a concern not only for CEOs and CTOs but also for engineers and development teams.


  • AWS’s Investment in Kubernetes: Amazon EKS, celebrating its fifth year, represents AWS’s significant investment in Kubernetes. AWS has diligently worked to make EKS a robust platform, excelling in performance, scale, reliability, and availability. Data from CNCF and AWS customers highlight that more Kubernetes workloads run on AWS than on any other platform, with billions of EC2 instance hours being run with EKS every week.


About Amazon EKS

Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) is a managed service that simplifies running containerized applications on Amazon Web Services (AWS). EKS eliminates the need for manual Kubernetes setup and management, allowing you to focus on building and deploying your applications. It offers a highly available, scalable, and secure platform for container orchestration, integrating seamlessly with other AWS services for networking, security, and monitoring.


What are Customers Doing in EKS?

Customers are leveraging EKS for a variety of purposes; activities range from the migration of legacy .NET and Java applications to the cloud, the execution of data processing tasks, the construction of real-time backends, and the development of web frontends.

Recently, a substantial emergence of machine learning and AI has been observed as a major utilization for EKS and Kubernetes, covering diverse areas such as generative AI and robotics. A profound interest lies in autonomous vehicles, which are exceptionally captivating. Notably, substantial autonomous vehicle training activities are currently taking place in EKS. Witnessing companies actively engaged in developing future technologies with tools like machine learning, kube ray, Spark, and kube flow running on EKS is a remarkable and exciting aspect of the current landscape.

In the exploration, the analysis extends to the infrastructure, observing the intricate layers where Kubernetes plays a pivotal role by orchestrating across diverse infrastructure elements, seamlessly knitting them together. Customers actively contribute by layering deployment, observability, governance, traffic controls, and security controls on top of Kubernetes.


Goals for AWS Kubernetes


  1. Undifferentiated Heavy Lifting Removal:

  • Customers are relieved from the burden of undifferentiated heavy lifting associated with managing Kubernetes on AWS.


  • Operational complexities are handled, allowing users to shift their focus towards core competencies rather than being engaged in routine task management.


  1. Operations Simplification and Access Granting:

  • Aims at simplifying the Kubernetes experience on AWS, providing users with a streamlined and user-friendly environment.


  • Users are granted complete access to the cloud’s scale, stability, and security, ensuring that the operational landscape is seamlessly and efficiently managed.


  1. Perpetuation of Open Source Standards:

  • Continual maintenance of the open-source standard of Kubernetes.


  • This involves ensuring compatibility with the 599 projects within the CNCF, enabling rapid innovation, access to new developments from the community and partners, and ongoing improvement of community standards.


5 Years of EKS

2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
EKS Generally Available ISO, PCI, and SOC Compliance Price reduced to $0.10 per hour OIDC access authentication IPv6 clusters available Expansion to 32 AWS regions
Managed Cluster Version Updates Expansion to 15 AWS regions Secrets Encryption Karpenter project PrivateLink support Kubernetes Network Policy enforcement
GPU Support CSI drivers for EBS, EFS, FSx for Lustre SLA raised to 99.95% Cluster creation reduced by 40% Local clusters on Outposts Extended version support
HIPAA eligible Pod security policies EKS CIS Benchmark Control plane scaling Trainium instances Version launch acceleration
  Managed Node Groups ACK Project EKS Anywhere GA Add-ons from AWS marketplace Pod Identity
  EKS Fargate Load balancer controller EKS Connector Nitro enclaves S3 Mountpoints CSI Driver
  EKS on AWS Outposts EKS on AWS Local zones FedRamp High Compliance Launch time reductions  
  K8s Resources in EKS console EFA, P4d instance support    
  EKS Add-ons      


How AWS Supports Kubernetes

Amazon EKS stands out as a pivotal element in the management bucket, engaged in comprehensive support for Kubernetes within the AWS ecosystem. Serving as a cornerstone in AWS’s commitment to Kubernetes, EKS exemplifies the dedication to providing customers with a robust and efficient Kubernetes management solution. Beyond EKS, AWS offers diverse approaches, including developing a Kubernetes distribution, integrating numerous open-source projects, facilitating connectivity between Kubernetes and AWS components, and active participation in upstream development.

The AWS team extends its commitment to security by contributing to the security council of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) and the Kubernetes project, ensuring robust safety measures. Furthermore, AWS plays a vital role by offering direct sponsorship providing financial support to community projects that contribute to lowering costs and enhancing the availability of shared resources for everyone involved.



Embracing Innovation

The future of Amazon EKS lies in its ability to embrace cutting-edge advancements. Here are a few potential avenues:


  • Simplified Multi-cluster Management: Managing multiple EKS clusters across diverse regions can be complex. We might see simplified tools and automation for provisioning, configuration, and monitoring of multi-cluster deployments.


  • Enhanced Security: Security remains a top priority in cloud environments. Integration with advanced security services like AWS Security Lake and Amazon GuardDuty could offer a more comprehensive security posture for containerized applications.


  • Serverless Integration: Serverless computing is gaining traction. Tighter integration between Amazon EKS and AWS Lambda could enable serverless functions to seamlessly interact with containerized workloads, fostering a hybrid approach for optimal resource utilization.


  • Focus on Developer Experience: Streamlining the developer experience is paramount. Features like automated image building simplified debugging tools, and pre-configured development environments within EKS could significantly enhance developer productivity.


Industry-Specific Solutions

Amazon EKS is finding its way into various industries. We can expect to see industry-specific solutions pre-packaged with EKS, offering pre-configured environments and integrations tailored to specific use cases like machine learning, high-performance computing, and media & entertainment.



The future of Kubernetes is bright, and Amazon EKS is at the forefront of innovation. AWS is committed to providing its customers with a robust, efficient, and secure Kubernetes experience. With a focus on removing undifferentiated heavy lifting, simplifying operations, and perpetuating open-source standards, AWS is ensuring that Kubernetes remains a powerful tool for driving business value.




  1. What are the advantages of using Amazon EKS over managing Kubernetes?

There are several advantages to using Amazon EKS over managing Kubernetes yourself. With EKS, AWS handles the heavy lifting of managing the Kubernetes control plane, allowing you to focus on deploying and managing your applications. EKS also simplifies scaling your Kubernetes cluster and ensures high availability. EKS integrates seamlessly with other AWS services, making it easier to build and deploy cloud-native applications.


  1. What are some of the security features offered by Amazon EKS?

Amazon EKS offers several security features to protect your containerized applications. EKS integrates with AWS IAM for access control, allowing you to define granular permissions for who can access your Kubernetes cluster and what they can do. Additionally, EKS supports encryption of container images and secrets at rest and in transit. Finally, AWS offers security best practices and compliance certifications for running Kubernetes on EKS.


  1. How can we get started with Amazon EKS?

Getting started with Amazon EKS is easy. AWS provides a variety of resources to help you learn about EKS, including documentation, tutorials, and workshops. You can also sign up for a free tier account to experiment with EKS before committing to a paid plan. There are also a number of managed service providers (MSPs) that offer support for Amazon EKS, which can be helpful for organizations that don’t have the in-house expertise to manage Kubernetes clusters themselves.

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