KubeCon EU 2021 Recap - A Celebration of Kubernetes

By Adam Bullock
May 20, 2021

KubeCon EU 2021 was a blast! It was also A LOT. Good news: there was a wide variance of topics discussed and fascinating sessions. Bad news: there are only 24 hours in a day to watch them. More good news; we take the time to spotlight sessions our team were a part of, as well as highlight some more interesting sessions.

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The first week of May 2021 welcomed KubeCon Europe 2021 with an abundance of sessions ranging from technical, to more high-level, adoption of Kubernetes in leading-edge industries like telco, and even featured a skit that had attendees buzzing during and after the event. We were thrilled to be a part of the event, and to celebrate how far Kubernetes has come.

The sheer amount of sessions available is staggering, so we would love to give you some highlights from the show and some of our favorites.

The Event 'Gits' Going on Monday, May 3

The show technically kicked off with some events on May 3, which included the inaugural GitOpsCon EU 2021 event organized by the GitOps Working Group, but there was plenty more on the opening days of the event, including a session with our own Paul Curtis demonstrating a simple build pipeline for promotion from development to production using EKS and EKS-D.

Once Wednesday rolled around, though, an attendee could go in any myriad of tracks.

Spotlight on Weaveworks

Hosting a booth via a virtual event feels a bit different, but many members of the team took the time to answer any questions visitors had and hosted a handful of 'office hours'. If you have signed up to attend the show, you can still visit our booth and take a look at all the goodies we have there.

The team here at Weaveworks not only spent our time attending sessions and sharing in the excitement of all things Kubernetes, we had several members of our team present.

Helm Users! What Flux 2 Can Do For You - Scott Rigby & Kingdon Barrett, Weaveworks

Helm, the Package manager for Kubernetes. Flux, the GitOps continuous delivery solution for Kubernetes. Both can be used independently, but are more powerful together. Scott Rigby, Helm and Flux maintainer - and Kingdon Barrett, OSS engineer - shared the benefits of Helm and GitOps for developers, along with running through a demo showcasing the extra awesomeness of Flux v2 and Helm together.

Be sure to watch the last part with their “We wanted to show you so much more” section and ping them on Twitter with questions you may have.

Cortex: Multi-tenant Scalable Prometheus - Bryan Boreham, Weaveworks & Jacob Tlisi, Grafana Labs

This session provided an overview of Cortex, an update on recent news from the project, and a deeper look at the recently added administrator feature to query across multiple tenants.

Bryan gives an overview of Cortex, along with some project news and Jacob demos multi-tenant queries at 10 minutes in. Check it out below.

Cluster API Provider AWS (CAPA) Update - Richard Case, Weaveworks & Sedef Savas, VMware

Hear about the new features in Cluster API (CAPI)/Cluster API Provider AWS (CAPA), the roadmap ahead, and how you can contribute to the project.

Sedef starts a demo (can you tell that demos are my favorite part of these?) at 11:45 into the video.

SIG Contributor Experience Deep Dive - Bob Killen, Google; Alison Dowdney, Weaveworks; Christoph Blecker, Red Hat; Nikhita Raghunath, VMware

The Kubernetes Contributor Experience Special Interest Group (SIG) is tasked with developing and sustaining a healthy contributor community. Things like feature velocity, community scaling, mentoring, pull request latency, and more all fall within scope of the SIG. In the talk, they provided an introduction to SIG Contributor Experience, its role within the project, and dove into the various sub projects that support its mission. Additionally, they also provided a general community update and went over how to get involved.

It was enlightening to hear about all the work that goes in behind the scenes to make the experience so positive for everyone.

GitOps Working Group Update - Cornelia Davis, Weaveworks & Chris Sanders, Microsoft

Cornelia and Chris gave an update on the GitOps Working Group, including what it is, why it exists, and more. They also presented key principles and practices via demonstrations of CNCF and other OOS projects including Flux, Argo, Tekton, and others.

Finally, they presented concrete steps to help folks get started with cloud-native (Git)ops.

Tackling New Challenges in a Virtual Focused Community - Bob Killen, Google & Alison Dowdney, Weaveworks

In a very timely presentation, Alison and Bob talked about virtual events from a community perspective. If you have any involvement in the scheduling or production of virtual events, or are a member of a community focused on the community itself, this session is a must-watch.

Traces from Events: A New Way to Visualize Kubernetes Activities - Bryan Boreham, Weaveworks

Bryan explored how Events, which are already emitted from all parts of Kubernetes, can be turned into OpenTelemetry Traces and visualized using Jaeger.

Demo alert! Tune in at 8:12 to watch Bryan warn you to “Brace yourself! YAML coming!” and see Kspan in action, a program he has written. Watching Bryan explain not only what it is, but also how it works, aligns perfectly with his passion of understanding what is going on inside computer systems.

What Else Should You Watch?

With 227 videos on the official KubeCon + CloudNativeCon Europe 2021 YouTube playlist, you can definitely find something related to what you're interested in. Here's an assortment of sessions that your peers and colleagues have been sharing and talking about.

How Deutsche Telekom Technik Built Das Schiff for Sailing the Cloud Native Seas - Vuk Gojnic, Deutsche Telekom

How has Vuk's journey gone since mid-2019 when asked to look into providing a Kubernetes platform for telco workloads? Watch how Vuk and his team at Deutsche Telekom turned to the CNCF when creating Das Schiff, their cloud-native Kubernetes platform that uses Cluster API and Flux for managing telco and 5G at scale using GitOps best practices.

For a technical look at the ability to run Kubernetes on microVMs, and the jointly developed core technology by Deutsche Telekom, Weaveworks, and AWS called Liquid Metal in the Dash Schiff platform, read our latest blog post Liquid Metal: multi-cluster Kubernetes on bare metal with microVMs.

Hacking into Kubernetes Security for Beginners - Ellen Körbes, Tilt & Tabitha Sable, Datadog

Tired of seeing little heads talk through slides? Watch this 26-minute presentation that is more 'skit' then 'session' (and does a really incredible job of teaching you a thing or two along the way!).

Farewell, KubeCon EU 2021

Attending the show virtually was a blast, and we have our hands-full with on-demand sessions via the YouTube playlist. The show was a celebration of Kubernetes and how far it's come, and we're overjoyed in the reception and excitement looking back and forging ahead!

If any questions come up as you view these sessions, or you would have liked to attend a particular office session and didn't get a chance, contact our sales team and they would be happy to get you pointed in the right direction! Or, if you're ready to see what Weave Kubernetes Platform is all about, request a demo.

Hello, GitOps Days 2021!


Keep the learning going by attending a two-day event solely dedicated to GitOps! Register for GitOps Days on June 9 & 10. From advanced to beginner-level sessions, no matter how much you know about the fast-growing development approach that has been coined 'essential for 5G deployment' and the 'best way to modernize IT governance for highly-regulated industries,' this event will give you an opportunity to live, breathe, and eat* GitOps for two days.

* For the record, GitOps cannot be breathed in or physically consumed, but we definitely live it here at Weaveworks and can recommend whole-heartedly joining the event!

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