Skip to main content

Glasskube vs Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM) Comparison

The operator framework was introduced by RedHat in 2018 based on a concept from 2016.

The two most popular projects are the Operator SDK and the Operator Lifecycle Management.

The Operator SDK is a wrapper for Kubernetes SIGS project Kubebuilder. An SDK for building Kubernetes APIs using Custom Resource Definitions (CRDs). The Operator SDK also supports writing Operators with Go, Ansible, Helm and even JVM based languages with the java-operator-sdk which Glasskube uses for its apps-operator.

The Operator Lifecycle Manager is part of the operator framework and a toolkit to provide automatic updates for Kubernetes operators. Although it is not directly part of OpenShift, it is loosely coupled as the related GUI is not open-source and only part of OpenShift, a commercial product. Using the OLM is very complex and consists of multiple CRDs and concepts, but you could achieve something similar to glasskube install cert-manager with kubectl operator install cert-manager -n cert-manager --channel stable --approval Automatic --create-operator-group, but still lacking a GUI and the simple bootstrap of glasskube bootstrap.

OLMs lists currently more packages than Glasskube, but Glasskube packages will rapidly increase over time.

Another difference between Glasskube and OLM is that OLM only supports operators while Glasskube supports all kinds of cloud-native applications.

If you are already an OpenShift customer or only want to install operators, OLM might be a good fit for you, but you will enjoy using Glasskube if you work with Kubernetes clusters and are looking for a package manager that supports all kind of packages.