Why run Windows containers on Amazon EKS?

Aug 16, 2022 | Announcements, Migration, MSP

The short answer is that synthesizing those two worlds offers comprehensive system logging, more precise system observability, better code pipelines, and enhanced security.

In other words, AWS users run Windows and Linux containers side by side in the same Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) environment to meld the attributes of both systems, providing a consistent method of provisioning, monitoring, logging, and security. And it works, regardless of the kind of container they use to host their applications. This is good news for organizations with investments in Windows- and Linux-based applications because they don’t need separate orchestrators to manage their workloads.

Amazon EKS simplifies the process of building, securing, operating, and maintaining Kubernetes clusters. So, when you run Windows containers on Amazon EKS, you implement cross-Availability Zones, detection and recycling of unhealthy nodes, and secure and encrypted communication between the nodes. As a bonus, you can run any Kubernetes tools and plugins because Amazon EKS is fully compatible with Kubernetes. The availability of Windows containers on Kubernetes is an opportunity for AWS customers to unlock the business benefits of Kubernetes for both their Windows and Linux workloads.

Many development teams build and support applications designed to run on Windows Servers. For any new or existing clusters using Kubernetes version 1.14 and above, Windows Container support on Amazon EKS enables those teams to deploy on Kubernetes alongside Linux applications. This ability provides more consistency in system logging, performance monitoring, and with consistency, it also makes code deployments more agile.

Amazon EKS supports running heterogeneous workloads, such as Linux and Windows Nodes in the same cluster, a mix of Pods that run on Linux and Pods that run on Windows in that cluster, or multiple versions of Windows in the same cluster. Both Windows Nodes and Linux Nodes are critical to the functioning of the Amazon EKS cluster, as illustrated in the diagram below.

Source: Amazon EKS Workshop,

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