Serverless (Lambda) vs. Containers (Kubernetes)
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4 min read Oct 4, 2023

Serverless (Lambda) vs. Containers (Kubernetes)

Analysing the Difference Between Serverless and Containers

Serverless and Containers represent two distinct approaches to modern cloud computing. Serverless, often implemented with Amazon’s Lambda platform, allows developers to quickly deploy code without managing the underlying infrastructures. On the other hand, Containers, such as Kubernetes, allow for greater scalability and flexibility.

A key benefit of serverless is its simplicity. Deploying applications can be made in minutes, while managing servers typically takes hours or even days.

Kubernetes presents an appealing alternative when scalability is paramount. It enables users to quickly scale their application up or down depending on demand, allowing them to serve more customers without increasing costs.

Ultimately, both approaches offer unique advantages depending on a project’s specific requirements. For teams looking for rapid deployment times, serverless is an ideal choice. However, those who need more control and granular scalability should consider Kubernetes.

Differences Between Serverless (Lambda) and Containers (Kubernetes)

1. Technical Meaning

Lambda is an AWS serverless technology that the developers run to control functions in the cloud. A Lambda function takes small snippets of code languages like Java, Python, etc., instead of provisioning one server. Then, it executes the code languages by starting and shutting down after execution. It is a different type of computing in that developers pay for using certain features without managing any servers.

On the other hand, Kubernetes are the operational tasks of container management with built-in commands to deploy applications. It rolls out changes in the applications and scales them to fit the dynamic needs while monitoring.

2. Underlying Infrastructure Cost

AWS Lambda is a code in a temporary container that terminates after purpose completion. Therefore, developers only pay what they use depending on the memory size(GB) and execution time (milliseconds). The operating cost multiplies to produce GB-second to calculate the infrastructural cost. On average, the monthly request price becomes $0.20 per one million requests, and the temporary storage price is $0.0000000309 for every GB-second with 512MB storage.

The infrastructural cost of containers and Kubernetes is low for being lightweight and faster. OS-level in containers for virtualisation allows the fitting of multiple containers in a single round. It does not require heavy duplicate OS images to run. Therefore, these features lead to digit resource savings with simple implementation. There are several nodes of Kubernetes to work, and the primary node costs $12 per month with a container registry of upto 500MB.

3. Variety in Traffic

Lambda is typically known for its efficiency, with predictable traffic patterns due to its serverless infrastructure, allowing for reliable and timely delivery of services.

On the other hand, Kubernetes offers more robust control over traffic management, allowing users to adjust their configurations in real-time. However, since these changes apply manually, this type of system can lead to unpredictable traffic trends depending on the expertise and understanding of the user.

4. Ease of Code

The AWS Lambda has the infrastructure to upload the code. It takes care of the maintenance of the code and triggers it whenever required. It allows developers to choose the memory and timeout for the code. Lambda offers different options for authoring and deploying codes. In addition, it offers immense support for the serverless framework, making AWS Lambda code easy.

On the other hand, Kubernetes changes the code deployment process, making it possible to roll out new releases. It deploys the code on hundreds and thousands of servers without downtime. However, developers must be familiar with everything required to run and support the application.

5. Learning Time

Lambda, the revolutionary technology taking serverless computing to the next level, is a powerful tool for modern developers. This cloud-based system allows developers to quickly and easily deploy code without managing or maintaining their servers. It eliminates the common headaches like unproductivity or high cost associated with traditional development models and provides unparalleled scalability on demand.

By taking the time to understand the complexities of Kubernetes, users can tap into a powerful technology capable of meeting even the most demanding application requirements. With adequate preparation and best practices in place, anyone can gain confidence in their ability to operate Kubernetes deployments.

Wrapping Up

Kubernetes requires continuous management by administrators to keep up with system updates and security patches, whereas Lambda abstracts most of this away with its managed service model. As such, it is essential to consider the specific requirements of your application when deciding which technology is best suited for your use case.

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