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A new service brings Hitachi’s “technology leadership” to the container sector.

Hitachi Vantara this week announced the availability of Hitachi Kubernetes Service (HKS). The company says this is an enterprise-grade solution for the complex challenge of managing multiple Kubernetes environments.

Hitachi Kubernetes Service enables customers to manage Kubernetes clusters across major cloud providers and on premises, according to Hitachi. This empowers developers to deploy workloads on their platform of choice, and eliminates vendor lock-in.

How Hitachi moved into the Kubernetes business

In March 2020, Hitachi Vantara bought the assets of a small startup called Containership. This gave them the technology to supply storage to Kubernetes-orchestrated containers. HKS builds on this foundation to supply K8s cluster management of application and data containers in a single facility.

Hitachi Vantara has built an open CSI (Kubernetes Container Storage Interface) plugin. This plugin allows Hitachi Vantara Storage to provide persistent storage for Kubernetes stateful containers.

HKS also provides a multi-cloud dashboard with APIs to automate workflows. The platform also provides data protection functions through open source technologies integrated with HKS. The company has said that they will enhance these functions through an as-yet unnamed strategic partner.

Bobby Soni, president, Digital Infrastructure, at Hitachi Vantara, explained the company’s move. “We are helping simplify and solve the multi-cloud Kubernetes challenge for our customers with the introduction of Hitachi Kubernetes Service,” he says.

“With this enterprise-grade service, our customers now have the freedom of a true agnostic platform, the flexibility of an extensible self-service catalogue, accompanied with world-class training and Hitachi global support to help their development teams drive business results.”

Why Hitachi made the move to Kubernetes

According to Hitachi, containers are being adopted faster and more comprehensively than previously anticipated. The containerization of applications enables them to be deployed and run easily across different computing environments. This provides substantial infrastructure cost savings.

Hitachi quotes a Gartner report saying that by 2022, more than 75% of global organizations will be running containerized applications in production. Kubernetes, they say, is thus an attractive emerging technology standard for creating, managing, and orchestrating containers.

HKS “brings Hitachi’s technology leadership, expertise in the enterprise, and renowned global training and support to this sector,” the company states.