Kubectl | Minikube | Kops - What's the difference?

In Kubernetes world almost every tool has a “kube” in its name, plus there are so any of them each having a different role, so it may get a little confusing. The difference between 3 of the widely used tools - Kubectl | Minikube | Kops is actually pretty straightforward.


Is used to create and manage a production-grade Kubernetes cluster on cloud. It’s integrated with AWS and Google Cloud (GCE) and some other platforms. It’s a command line tool that offers simple commands to create, update and delete the cluster on cloud environment. These are some of Kops commands:


Is used for the same purpose as Kops, but for LOCAL k8s cluster creation. So with Minikube you can create, update, delete a cluster locally on your machine. It creates a single node cluster in VM on your local machine. It’s useful if you want to quickly create a small test cluster. It uses pretty simple commands to create and delete local cluster:


Once you create the cluster (either locally with Minikube or remotely in prod mode with kops), you need kubectl to actually configure it: create k8s components like pods and services etc, troubleshoot the cluster etc. Here are some common kubectl commands:

Below is the diagram comparing the 3 tools:

Nicole Hiller  |  Nana Janashia

Mail: info@nnsoftware.at

©2018 by nnSoftware