Illumina Innovates with Rancher and Kubernetes
This section provides an overview of the architecture options of installing Rancher, describing advantages of each option.
In this section,
Rancher can be installed on these main architectures:
There are also separate instructions for installing Rancher in an air gap environment or behind an HTTP proxy:
We recommend installing Rancher on a Kubernetes cluster, because in a multi-node cluster, the Rancher management server becomes highly available. This high-availability configuration helps maintain consistent access to the downstream Kubernetes clusters that Rancher will manage.
For that reason, we recommend that for a production-grade architecture, you should set up a high-availability Kubernetes cluster using either RKE or K3s, then install Rancher on it. After Rancher is installed, you can use Rancher to deploy and manage Kubernetes clusters.
For testing or demonstration purposes, you can install Rancher in single Docker container. In this Docker install, you can use Rancher to set up Kubernetes clusters out-of-the-box.
Our instructions for installing Rancher on Kubernetes describe how to first use K3s or RKE to create and manage a Kubernetes cluster, then install Rancher onto that cluster.
When the nodes in your Kubernetes cluster are running and fulfill the node requirements, you will use Helm to deploy Rancher onto Kubernetes. Helm uses Rancher’s Helm chart to install a replica of Rancher on each node in the Kubernetes cluster. We recommend using a load balancer to direct traffic to each replica of Rancher in the cluster.
For a longer discussion of Rancher architecture, refer to the architecture overview, recommendations for production-grade architecture, or our best practices guide.
Before installing Rancher, make sure that your nodes fulfill all of the installation requirements.
For the best performance and greater security, we recommend a separate, dedicated Kubernetes cluster for the Rancher management server. Running user workloads on this cluster is not advised. After deploying Rancher, you can create or import clusters for running your workloads.
For more architecture recommendations, refer to this page.
Refer to the Helm chart options for details on installing Rancher on a Kubernetes cluster with other configurations, including:
In the Rancher installation instructions, we recommend using K3s or RKE to set up a Kubernetes cluster before installing Rancher on the cluster. Both K3s and RKE have many configuration options for customizing the Kubernetes cluster to suit your specific environment. For the full list of their capabilities, refer to their documentation:
Refer to the docs about options for Docker installs for details about other configurations including: