Helm, the Kubernetes package manager for deploying predefined “charts” of applications into Kubernetes clusters, has now graduated from incubation at the Cloud Native Computing Foundation as a fully-fledged CNCF project.
In plainer language: Helm is here to stay.
For current Helm users, this changes very little. Helm charts don’t need to be reworked to conform to a new standard, and no new version of the software has to be deployed.
The significance of the graduation is in signalling to Kubernetes end-users and third-party developers that Helm can be counted on going forward as a trusted component, and that infrastructure and other software can be developed atop Helm with confidence.
Helm, now in its third major revision, has long shown signs of being mature and dependable, and already has gained wide acceptance and significant in-production use within the Kubernetes community.
Some 1200 Helm charts are available in the Helm Hub, the official CNCF repository, including complex multi-container applications that are hard to deploy manually.
Many third-party Kubernetes tools feature integration with Helm as an app deployment mechanism. Key contributors to the project include IBM, Microsoft, Google, Red Hat, VMware, SAP, and many more.
The move from “incubation” to “graduation” means the CNCF recognises Helm has not only shown strong technical merit, but also good governance around the project, and strong backing by multiple professional organisations that use it in production.
Helm’s project status was boosted further by an independent security audit, completed in November 2019, that concluded Helm was “highly mature” software built with good security practices and could be recommended for public deployment.