What is Amazon EKS?

AWS managed kubernetes service. Safest way to scale your Kubernetes!

What is Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (AWS EKS)?

Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service also known as AWS EKS, is a managed Kubernetes service that helps organizations run Kubernetes on AWS eliminating the need to install, maintain or operate their own Kubernetes control plane or node. To be very generic, AWS will take care of Kubernetes infrastructure and configuration.

What is the difference between Kubernetes and EKS?

Kubernetes is an open-source system that lets you automate the deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Amazon EKS can take responsibility to handle all of those things.

Below are a few differences between EKS and Kubernetes:
  • Where Kubernetes is a self-managed service (by the organization), Amazon EKS is a managed service where Amazon takes care of the underlying infrastructure.
  • Amazon EKS ensures high availability by self-maintaining the Kubernetes control plane across multiple AWS Availability zones.
  • EKS uses Amazon VPC network policies to restrict traffic between control plane components to a single cluster.
  • Amazon EKS scales Kubernetes cluster according to the requirement. Regular Kubernetes need to be configured manually.

Why EKS is better than regular Kubernetes?

Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (AWS EKS) offers several benefits over regular Kubernetes. Note that buying EKS will not solve all the problems, but can prove to be the right choice made between EKS and other Kubernetes available. Selecting these solutions depends on factors such as any specific use case, existing infrastructure, or the preferences of an organization.

Here are 4 reasons why EKS is better than regular Kubernetes:

  • Usability - EKS provides a single API and command interface to manage your Kubernetes clusters, making it easier for developers to get started with Kubernetes.
  • Reliability - Configuring Kubernetes manually can be overwhelming, EKS eliminates this task with built-in managed service.
  • Scalability - EKS can scale itself up or down according to the need, which makes it super easy to not be overwhelmed by the ops knowledge and effort required.
  • Integration with other AWS services: As a self-hosted tool, EKS can seamlessly integrate with other AWS services like Elastic Container Registry (ERC), Elastic Load Balancing (ELB), and similar others.

In addition to these, there are various other features that EKS makes a better choice to consider for running Kubernetes on AWS. We have tried to list down a few below:

  • Automatic updates: Run the most secure and the latest version of Kubernetes with EKS’ auto-update feature.
  • Fargate Support: AWS EKS supports Fargate, a serverless computing platform that lets users run containers without having to manage any underlying infrastructure.
  • Kubernetes add-ons support: EKS supports add-ons such as Prometheus or Grafana that can be used to monitor and manage your Kubernetes clusters.
With all these features from Amazon EKS, it makes sense for organizations wanting to run Kubernetes in their AWS environment without any need to worry about the underlying infrastructure. Overall Amazon EKS is a reliable, secure, and scalable platform for Kubernetes applications.

Components of Amazon EKS nodes

Amazon EKS consists of the following components:

Control Plane

The control plane is in charge of managing Kubernetes clusters. It majorly consists of three core components, the API server, Controller manager, and etcd, which can be further explained as follows:

  • API server: It is the main entry point to interact with the Kubernetes cluster.
  • Controller manager: Kubernetes objects such as pods, services, and deployments are managed by the controller manager.
  • Etcd: A distributed key-value store to store the Kubernetes cluster state.

Worker Nodes

The worker node is where Kubernetes applications will operate. These are nothing but Amazon EC2 instances that are configured to run Kubernetes.


Amazon VPC network uses EKS to connect the control plane and worker nodes, allowing Kubernetes applications to communicate with each other as well as the outside world.

Best practices for your AWS EKS setup

  • EKS Cluster Should Allow Inbound Traffic only from Port 443(HTTPS)
  • EKS Clusters Should Have Logging Enabled
  • EKS Clusters Should Use The Latest Stable Version of Kubernetes
  • EKS Clusters Should Have High Availability
  • ECR Repositories Should Be Private
  • ECR Repository Tag Should Be Immutable
  • ECR Image Repositories Should Have A Lifecycle Policy Attached
  • Image Vulnerability Scanning Should Be Enabled For Amazon ECR

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