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Kubernetes and the Enterprise: SUSE Updates Rancher and Edge Portfolio

Kubernetes and the Enterprise: SUSE Updates Rancher and Edge Portfolio

The News: SUSE announced enhancements to its container management portfolio to help platform engineering teams manage at scale and support AI and machine learning (ML) workloads. Read the press release here.

Kubernetes and the Enterprise: SUSE Updates Rancher and Edge Portfolio

Analyst Take: In recent years, Kubernetes has cemented its position as the backbone of container orchestration, facilitating the deployment, scaling, and management of application containers across clusters of hosts. Its maturity is evident in its growing adoption across enterprises, a trend prominently highlighted in Europe’s recent KubeCon and CloudNativeCon. The changing demographics at these conventions, symbolized by the increasing sports coat to hoodie ratio in Paris, reflect the evolving landscape of platform engineering. This shift represents a significant milestone in the maturity of Kubernetes, transitioning from a tool primarily wielded by the tech avant-garde to a cornerstone of enterprise infrastructure.

SUSE Announces Enhancements Across Cloud Native and Edge Portfolio

At the forefront of this evolution is SUSE, a leading provider of open-source solutions, which recently announced substantial updates across its cloud-native and Edge portfolio. The updates, particularly within Rancher Prime 3.0 and SUSE Edge 3.0, are designed to empower customers to deploy and manage business-critical workloads securely, anywhere. Peter Smails, the general manager of the SUSE Enterprise Container Management business unit, emphasized the dual mission of addressing enterprise needs while fostering open-source community growth.

Enhancements in Rancher Prime 3.0

Rancher Prime 3.0, SUSE’s flagship container management platform, introduces features that significantly advance its capabilities:

  • Secure Software Supply Chain: With SLSA certification and SBOM, Rancher Prime enhances trust in software delivery, a critical requirement for enterprises.
  • Software Lifecycle Management: The platform offers consistent, repeatable releases, closely aligned with the upstream Kubernetes lifecycle, streamlining the deployment and management process.
  • Self-Service PaaS: The general availability of Cluster API and new Cluster Classes facilitates the scalable delivery of PaaS, empowering platform engineering teams to automate and accelerate deployment processes. Rancher Prime 3.0 enables platform engineering teams to deliver self-service platform-as-a-service (PaaS) capabilities to development teams. This empowers developers to quickly provision and deploy the resources they need for their applications without relying heavily on platform engineering teams, leading to increased agility and productivity.
  • Rancher Prime Application Collection: This feature provides a trusted, enterprise-grade distribution platform for open-source applications, addressing the demand for reliable software sources. The general availability of the Rancher Prime Application Collection provides developers with a curated collection of pre-built applications and services that they can leverage to accelerate application development and deployment. This collection includes a wide range of popular open-source and commercial applications, making it easier for developers to build and deploy complex applications without starting from scratch.

Furthermore, the introduction of Rancher Enterprise packages the entire Rancher Prime portfolio into a single offering, simplifying the deployment and management of Kubernetes at scale.

AI and ML Support

A standout feature is the enhanced support for AI/ML workloads, facilitated by automatic detection and configuration of NVIDIA’s container runtimes in certified Kubernetes distributions RKE2 and K3s. This simplification is crucial for organizations increasingly relying on AI/ML to drive innovation and competitive advantage. Rancher Prime 3.0 offers enhanced support for AI and ML workloads, allowing developers to deploy and manage AI/ML applications more efficiently. This includes features such as optimized resource allocation, improved monitoring and debugging tools, and integration with popular AI/ML frameworks and libraries, making it easier for developers to build and deploy AI/ML-powered applications.

SUSE’s Strategic Direction and Market Expansion

SUSE’s recent announcements are pivotal for the company, following its delisting and amid senior leadership changes. These developments signify a strategic pivot toward reinforcing and expanding its market presence, particularly in the US. The enhancements to Rancher Prime and the introduction of SUSE Edge 3.0 are integral to this strategy, enabling SUSE to deliver comprehensive, secure, and scalable solutions that cater to the evolving needs of enterprises globally.

Rancher Prime’s advancements, especially in facilitating self-service PaaS and bolstering security, align with modern enterprises’ demands for flexibility and resilience in application deployment and management. Similarly, SUSE Edge 3.0 addresses the burgeoning demand for edge computing, offering an integrated, secure, and scalable platform optimized for edge-of-network deployments.

How SUSE Impacts DevOps and Developers

SUSE’s impact on DevOps and developers is substantial, primarily due to its comprehensive suite of tools and solutions tailored for modern software development and deployment practices. SUSE’s offerings streamline DevOps workflows, enhance collaboration between development and operations teams, and empower developers with powerful tools and platforms.

SUSE provides tools and platforms that foster collaboration between DevOps teams by offering centralized management and monitoring solutions. This enables seamless communication and coordination between developers and operations teams, leading to faster deployment cycles and improved overall efficiency.

SUSE’s solutions automate and streamline the deployment process, allowing developers to focus more on coding and less on infrastructure management. By leveraging technologies like containers and Kubernetes, SUSE enables developers to deploy applications quickly and reliably across diverse environments, from on-premises data centers to public clouds.

SUSE offers scalable and flexible infrastructure solutions that adapt to the evolving needs of modern applications. Whether it’s scaling applications horizontally to accommodate increased demand or deploying microservices architectures, SUSE provides developers with the tools they need to build and deploy scalable applications with ease.

SUSE prioritizes security and compliance in its offerings, providing developers with peace of mind knowing that their applications are running on a secure and compliant platform. SUSE’s solutions include robust security features, such as built-in encryption, access control, and compliance monitoring, ensuring that developers can focus on building innovative applications without compromising security.

SUSE’s comprehensive suite of tools and solutions empowers both DevOps teams and developers by streamlining workflows, enhancing collaboration, ensuring scalability and security, and providing access to cutting-edge technologies such as AI/ML. Additionally, the new capabilities added to Rancher Prime 3.0 further enhance developer productivity and agility by enabling self-service PaaS, offering a curated application collection, and improving support for AI/ML workloads

Looking Ahead

As SUSE continues its journey post-delisting, its commitment to open-source innovation remains unwavering. The company’s investments in its cloud-native portfolio not only underscore its dedication to the open-source community but also enhance its offerings to meet the sophisticated needs of its commercial users. This dual focus ensures that SUSE remains at the forefront of the industry, driving the evolution of enterprise-grade, secure, and scalable cloud-native and edge computing solutions.

The strategic enhancements to Rancher Prime and SUSE Edge, coupled with SUSE’s ongoing dedication to open source, position the company to capitalize on growth opportunities in the US market and beyond. As enterprises increasingly turn to Kubernetes for their critical workloads, SUSE’s comprehensive portfolio offers a compelling proposition for organizations seeking to navigate the complexities of modern IT infrastructure while ensuring security, scalability, and efficiency.

SUSE’s latest announcements at KubeCon Europe highlight its role as a pivotal player in the maturation of Kubernetes and its ecosystem. By enhancing its offerings with features that cater to the needs of enterprises and the open-source community alike, SUSE is not only navigating its own strategic transformation but also shaping the future of enterprise technology infrastructure.

Disclosure: The Futurum Group is a research and advisory firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis, and advisory services with many technology companies, including those mentioned in this article. The author does not hold any equity positions with any company mentioned in this article.

Analysis and opinions expressed herein are specific to the analyst individually and data and other information that might have been provided for validation, not those of The Futurum Group as a whole.

Other Insights from The Futurum Group:

Infrastructure Matters–Insider Edition with SUSE’s Vojtech Pavlik

SUSE Primes the Pump for Commercial Enterprise Rancher

SUSE and IBM Infrastructure Empowering Your Hybrid Cloud Journey

Author Information

Regarded as a luminary at the intersection of technology and business transformation, Steven Dickens is the Vice President and Practice Leader for Hybrid Cloud, Infrastructure, and Operations at The Futurum Group. With a distinguished track record as a Forbes contributor and a ranking among the Top 10 Analysts by ARInsights, Steven's unique vantage point enables him to chart the nexus between emergent technologies and disruptive innovation, offering unparalleled insights for global enterprises.

Steven's expertise spans a broad spectrum of technologies that drive modern enterprises. Notable among these are open source, hybrid cloud, mission-critical infrastructure, cryptocurrencies, blockchain, and FinTech innovation. His work is foundational in aligning the strategic imperatives of C-suite executives with the practical needs of end users and technology practitioners, serving as a catalyst for optimizing the return on technology investments.

Over the years, Steven has been an integral part of industry behemoths including Broadcom, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), and IBM. His exceptional ability to pioneer multi-hundred-million-dollar products and to lead global sales teams with revenues in the same echelon has consistently demonstrated his capability for high-impact leadership.

Steven serves as a thought leader in various technology consortiums. He was a founding board member and former Chairperson of the Open Mainframe Project, under the aegis of the Linux Foundation. His role as a Board Advisor continues to shape the advocacy for open source implementations of mainframe technologies.

At The Futurum Group, Paul Nashawaty, Practice Leader and Lead Principal Analyst, specializes in application modernization across build, release and operations. With a wealth of expertise in digital transformation initiatives spanning front-end and back-end systems, he also possesses comprehensive knowledge of the underlying infrastructure ecosystem crucial for supporting modernization endeavors. With over 25 years of experience, Paul has a proven track record in implementing effective go-to-market strategies, including the identification of new market channels, the growth and cultivation of partner ecosystems, and the successful execution of strategic plans resulting in positive business outcomes for his clients.

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