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KubeCon 2021 Q&A: Komodor Showcases Its New Workflows, Empowering Developers to Troubleshoot Kubernetes Efficiently and Independently


KubeCon + CloudNativeCon 2021.  Will you be in attendance?  If so, VMblog invites you to learn about Komodor.

Read this exclusive pre-show interview between VMblog and Ben Ofiri, CEO and Co-Founder at Komodor, the troubleshooting platform dedicated to Kubernetes.


VMblog:  Can you give us the high-level rundown of your company's technology offerings?  Explain to readers who you are, what you do, what problems you solve, etc.

Ben Ofiri:  In a sentence, Komodor can be described as a dedicated troubleshooting platform that optimizes the process of dealing with Kubernetes issues and unifies how troubleshooting is done across the organization.

The story of Komdor serves as a good introduction to the problems it solves. Before launching the company, I and our CTO and co-founder Itiel Shwartz were both working in organizations heavily reliant on Kubernetes and dealing with a lot of troubleshooting inefficiencies as a result. 

I was a Googler at the time, and even there I saw that dev teams were spending disproportionately large amounts of time and resources on dealing with Kubernetes issues.

The problem was a lack of general Kubernetes expertise, which turned most troubleshooting efforts into fire drills ending in escalation. We also saw huge amounts of energy invested in correlating information across different systems, all in an effort to understand the root cause of the problem. In other words: "who did what, when and where".

So this is what we decided to focus on, creating a platform that would track all changes across the entire K8s stack and present them in a simple and coherent timeline view. A tool that makes it very easy for everyone to understand what caused things to go wrong, when they inevitably go wrong.

VMblog:  And while talking about your products, can you give readers a few examples of how your offerings are unique?  What are your differentiators?

Ofiri:  The first is our Kubernetes expertise. This is a huge plus if you are looking for something that would effortlessly integrate with your K8s stack, really understand your environment, and help deal with the deeper issues. If you are not running Kubernetes, Komodor is not for you. If you are, no one will do it better.

The second is our focus on change intelligence that helps understand and resolve incidents. By enabling a timeline view of changes, and showing you how they correlate with different symothops - like alerts and health issues -  we dramatically cut down on the effort of discovering root causes. Nine out of ten times, the quickest way of identifying the issue is with a chronological view of the events preceding the alert.

The third thing that makes Komodor unique is our ability to understand itectations within your Kuberentes stack. Knowing how different components affect each other helps us make sense of the ripple effects within K8s systems. This is how we help troubleshoot the more complicated cases, those one out of ten incidents that can't simply be mapped to the last change made.

VMblog:  Normally at the KubeCon event, sponsors are showcasing new products or new product updates and features for the first time.  Do you have anything new that you've either recently announced or plan to discuss in more detail at the event?  Can we get a sneak peek?

Ofiri:  Yes, as it happens, we also have something planned for KuberCon. It's a new and exciting feature, which we code-named Workflows

The concept here is to go beyond discovering the root cause of a problem, to actually providing an expert recommendation for how to solve the issue. With Workflows, we bake-in expertise directly into our product and provider opinionated recipes for remediation, streamlining the handling of most common Kubernetes errors.

VMblog:  At what stage do you feel we are at with regard to containers?  Is there anything still holding it back?  Or keeping it from a wider distribution?

Ofiri:  This goes back to how you define adoption. I think the majority of organizations today already use Kubernetes in some capacity, but I also feel that it will take time for the majority of applications to run on containers. 

Most organizations today are in a migration state - they know that Kubernetes is the future but getting that future is a long road, and not all teams are walking it at the same pace.

This is where the knowledge gap again comes into play, creating a situation that everything Kubernetes-related falls on the shoulders of few domain experts.

This situation isn't healthy for anyone; it creates bottlenecks, causes frustration, and ties down the most valuable resources to deal with some of the more mundane tasks.

In my mind, this is one of the factors that hold Kubernetes back, and this the thing that Komodor, and several other tools that aim to make K8s operations simpler, are trying to solve.

VMblog:  How does your company or product fit within the container, cloud, Kubernetes ecosystem?

Ofiri:  Komodor integrates natively and seamlessly with Kubernetes, acting as a focal point for all information flows by pulling data from Git, cloud provider(s), source controls, underlying infrastructure, DBs, CI/CD tools, monitoring tools, incident response platforms, etc.

We promise to observe changes across the entire stack, and having end-to-end visibility is the only way to fulfill that promise.

VMblog:  There will be plenty of interesting topics covered during the KubeCon keynotes and breakout sessions.  But can you take this opportunity to share your own thoughts about any big changes or directions you see for this industry? What trends do you see?

Ofiri:  There is a lot happening around Kubernetes right now but for me it all taps into the broader theme of accelerated Kubernetes adoption. In my mind, Kubernetes is set to become the de facto operating system for all cloud-native applications. It feels just like Linux back in the day -- the momentum and impact of Kubernetes are impossible to ignore.


Published Monday, October 11, 2021 8:00 AM by David Marshall
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