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Kubernetes is an open-source platform that automates deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. It clusters groups of hosts running Linux containers in logical units for easy management and discovery. These clusters can span hosts across public, private, or hybrid clouds. This makes Kubernetes particularly well suited for hosting cloud-native applications that require rapid scaling.

With Kubernetes, you can orchestrate containers across multiple hosts, mount and add storage to stateful applications, scale containerized applications on the fly, and control and automate deployments and updates. Features include container grouping using Pods, self-healing, load balancing, DNS management, rollback, and resource monitoring and logging. However, Kubernetes is not a complete solution and is meant to be used with plugins.

Kubernetes was originally designed by Google, and is maintained by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). The seven spokes in the Kubernetes logo are a reference to the project’s original name, “Project Seven of Nine.”