Cloud Computing, DevOps, Google Cloud (GCP), Kubernetes

6 Mins Read

Managing Multiple Kubernetes Clusters using SUSE Rancher

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What is Suse Rancher?

One Platform for Kubernetes Management. That means you can manage multiple Kubernetes clusters in one place. It also helps to abstract the kubectl related commands, which admins use. It also provides services like building, deploying, scaling, monitoring, logging, and service mesh.

Why Suse Rancher?

  1. Multi-cluster app administration that is unified

Rancher offers corporate security, centralized identity and access control, auditing, backups, upgrades, observability, and alerts for Kubernetes clusters. Using our user-friendly UI or robust CLI, reliably deploy and secure clusters anywhere in just a few minutes.

  1. Multi-cloud as well as a hybrid support

Manage cloud-hosted clusters like AKS, EKS, GKE, and on-premises from a unified interface. Consistently launch multi-cluster applications from the app store. Connect them to an internal authentication provider like Active Directory, LDAP, or Okta to restrict access.

  1. Catalog of App in one place

Use Helm to deploy popular open-source tools or apps from our partner ecosystem across multiple clusters directly inside Rancher.

  1. Accelerate the uptake of DevOps

Rancher supports tools developed by the DevOps teams, including Jenkins, Gitlab for creating CI/CD workflows, Prometheus and Grafana for monitoring, Fluentd for logging, and Istio for service mesh.

  1. Security guidelines that are consistent and adhere to

Rancher enables encryption providers directly and lets users configure audit tracking and rate-limiting. CIS benchmark best practices should be used to scan and evaluate cluster setups. Utilizing cluster templates and implementing securely provisioned clusters consistently across various substrates includes assistance for air-gapped settings.


  1. Freedom to innovate

Rancher is free and open-source software, and only one edition is available. You will not be forced into a particular vendor ecosystem by doing this. With minimal service disruption, you can eliminate Rancher if you alter your mind.

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Rancher vs OpenShift

  1. Installation:
  • Rancher: Depending on the size and complexity of the environment, Rancher installation usually takes between 20 minutes and two hours. Rancher offers a straightforward installation script that can be used to install the Rancher server on any Kubernetes cluster. Rancher provides a web-based interface that, once deployed, makes it simple to manage the cluster and deploy applications.
  • OpenShift: Unlike Rancher, OpenShift installation might be more difficult and time-consuming. Depending on the scale and complexity of the environment, the installation procedure for OpenShift has been observed to take anything from several days to weeks. Installing OpenShift on a Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) server takes many steps, including setting up a load balancer, establishing DNS, and installing and configuring different components. But once it is deployed, OpenShift offers a web-based user interface and a command-line interface for administering the cluster and distributing applications.
  1. Upgrades:
  • Rancher: It only takes a few simple steps and typically takes less than 30 minutes to upgrade Rancher to a new version. Rancher offers a simple user interface (UI) that enables one-click updating to the most recent version. Rancher ensures that all current workloads are preserved throughout the upgrading process and that the cluster is still accessible.
  • OpenShift:  Compared to Rancher, OpenShift upgrades can be more difficult and time-consuming. To prevent cluster disruptions, upgrading to a new version of OpenShift takes meticulous preparation and implementation. Conduct updates, OpenShift offers an online dashboard and command-line interface. It is advised to follow the instructions closely to guarantee a successful upgrade.
  1. CNCF/Industry Standards/Open Source
  • Rancher:  Rancher is an open-source Kubernetes version that has received CNCF certification. Istio, Prometheus, Fluentd, and Jaeger are just a few of the open-source and industry standards supported by Rancher. Additionally, Rancher offers cloud service connectivity for AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, and Alibaba Cloud.
  • OpenShift: Although it is based on Kubernetes, OpenShift is not a CNCF-certified version because it uses a mix of open-source and commercial software. With its Kubernetes distribution, which comes with extra tools for creating, deploying, and administering apps, OpenShift offers this service. In addition, OpenShift supports open-source and industry standards, such as Istio, Prometheus, Fluentd, and Jaeger, and integrates with Red Hat’s network of goods and services.
  1. Support
  • Rancher: Rancher offers various types of assistance, such as a free community help forum, paid business assistance, and expert services. Various tools are available on the community support site, including lessons, literature, and conversation boards. Access to specialized support staff, round-the-clock assistance, and prioritized bug fixes are all features of paid business support. Consulting, teaching, and execution services are examples of professional services.
  • OpenShift: Red Hat, which gives a selection of support choices like basic support, premium support, and self-support, assists OpenShift. Bug fixes, security upgrades, and 24/7 help are all part of standard maintenance. Additional benefits of premium support include a personal technical account manager, a 30-minute reaction time guarantee for urgent problems, and proactive advice and direction. Access to internet forums and information bases is provided by self-support.
  1. Partner Ecosystem
  • Rancher: Cloud service companies, infrastructure suppliers, and independent software makers comprise Rancher’s robust partner community (ISVs). Rancher offers interoperability with important infrastructure companies like Dell, HPE, and NetApp, as well as cloud service providers like Amazon, Azure, Google Cloud, and Alibaba Cloud. Rancher also collaborates with independent software vendors (ISVs), like Datadog, GitLab, and Portworx, to offer more features and assistance for Kubernetes-based apps.
  • OpenShift: OpenShift has a robust partner network, emphasizing interaction with Red Hat’s community of goods and services. Red Hat’s networking, automation, storage tools, and those from partners like MongoDB, Dynatrace, and F5 Networks are all integrated with OpenShift. OpenShift also has agreements with significant cloud companies like AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud to provide interoperability with their services.

Steps to Deploy Rancher on GCP VM instances

  1. Launch the VM instance and Allow http or https



  1. Open terminal



  1. Installing Docker

On nodes where the Rancher server will be installed using Helm or Docker, Docker must be installed.

The installation of Docker may be done in a few diverse ways. Learn how to install Docker on Linux, you may make use of the official Docker documentation. Depending on the Linux distribution, the stages will change.

Using one of Rancher’s Docker installation scripts, which are accessible for the most recent Docker versions, provides an additional choice.

For example, this command could be used to install Docker 20.10 on Ubuntu:


  1. Check the Docker version


  1. Run the Docker command to launch rancher


  1. Run the docker ps command to check


  1. Open the browser and copy and paste the public Ip of the VM instance.


  1. Grep Rancher password from the docker container using the above command. Just change the container ID according to your container ID.



  1. Rancher is successfully set up.


  1. Rancher Dashboard



As it rapidly grows, the Kubernetes ecosphere provides greater stability, security, and independent service finding. Dell Technologies is aiding in streamlining setup and preparation processes by building up a Kubernetes cluster on PowerEdge, dynamically provisioning persistent storage with SUSE Rancher and CSI with Power Flex, and effortlessly integrating data security with Power Protect Data Manager. Administrators of Kubernetes can now rapidly launch environments for programmers and end users. These solutions ensure that SUSE Rancher for Kubernetes-managed downstream cluster operations is available, consistent, resilient, and recoverable.

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Drop a query if you have any questions regarding SUSE Rancher and I will get back to you quickly.

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1. Why choose SUSE and Rancher?

ANS: – With a large open-source community, SUSE and Rancher provide the enterprise with the best innovation and stability.

2. What does this mean for the open-source community?

ANS: – Since the beginning, SUSE and Rancher have been dedicated to offering their clients 100% genuine open-source technologies worldwide. Like the Power of Many established SUSE, Rancher’s history is firmly ingrained in the open-source community’s mentality.

3. Can a current Kubernetes cluster be moved to SUSE Rancher Hosted?

ANS: – SUSE Rancher Hosted allows the importation of pre-existing Kubernetes clusters. However, a cluster already under Rancher management cannot be transferred to SUSE Rancher Hosted at this time. Our management features are improving so users can migrate clusters amongst Rancher clusters.

WRITTEN BY Vineet Negi

Vineet Negi is a Research Associate at CloudThat. He is part of the Kubernetes vertical and has worked on DevOps and many other Cloud Computing technologies. He is an enthusiastic individual who is passionate about exploring all the latest technologies from a learning perspective.



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