Top 5 books on Kubernetes ci/cd pipeline setup

Welcome to the world of container orchestration! As the world leans heavily towards automation, the importance of understanding Kubernetes and CI/CD pipelines in modern technology stacks cannot be understated. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or a budding DevOps enthusiast, getting hands-on experience with these tools will exponentially increase your value in the tech industry. Today, we will delve into the top 5 books that provide profound insights into setting up Kubernetes CI/CD pipelines.

What is Kubernetes?

Originally developed by Google, Kubernetes, often abbreviated as K8s, is a powerful open-source platform designed to automate the deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. At its core, Kubernetes organizes containers into “pods” (the smallest deployable unit in K8s) and manages these pods across a cluster of servers to ensure efficient utilization of resources and smooth execution of services.

Kubernetes provides several key features, including service discovery, load balancing, automated rollouts and rollbacks, secret and configuration management, and self-healing mechanisms, among others. Its ability to handle complex, multi-container deployments makes Kubernetes an essential tool in the modern developer’s toolkit.

What is a CI/CD Pipeline?

CI/CD stands for Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery. It is a method in software development to deliver code changes more frequently and reliably. The CI/CD pipeline is the process that orchestrates this method into four fundamental stages: build, test, deploy, and monitor.

Continuous Integration refers to the practice where developers regularly merge their code changes into a central repository, which is then automatically built and tested. This allows teams to detect issues early and correct them promptly.

Continuous Delivery extends the concept of continuous integration by ensuring that the code can be safely deployed to production at any time. It involves stages like configuration, deployment, testing in a production-like environment, and the ultimate deployment to the production environment.

When CI/CD is incorporated into Kubernetes environments, it results in rapid, reliable, and robust software delivery. With this combination, developers can focus on their core competency: writing code, while Kubernetes takes care of ensuring that the application is always running as it should.

Kubernetes and CI/CD Pipeline: The Connection

There’s a compelling reason why Kubernetes and CI/CD pipelines are often discussed in tandem. When properly integrated, these tools become an engine of efficiency, accelerating the development cycle while minimizing errors and downtime.

Kubernetes offers a standardized, scalable platform for running applications, making it an ideal environment for the implementation of a CI/CD pipeline. By automating the process of building, testing, deploying, and monitoring applications, CI/CD pipelines streamline the path from the developer’s local environment to the production infrastructure.

Kubernetes enhances this process by providing automated rollouts and rollbacks, load balancing, and self-healing mechanisms. These features ensure a highly available and resilient production environment, even in the face of inevitable software bugs or infrastructure problems.

Furthermore, Kubernetes’ declarative configuration and automatic bin packing make it a perfect ally to CI/CD pipelines, helping to create a more efficient and robust software deployment process.

Book Review 1: Kubernetes: Up & Running

Written by Kelsey Hightower, Brendan Burns, and Joe Beda, who have made significant contributions to the Kubernetes project, “Kubernetes: Up & Running” is a go-to guide for beginners and intermediates in Kubernetes.

This book provides a comprehensive overview of Kubernetes, beginning with its basic concepts, and then diving into the intricacies of setting up and running Kubernetes clusters. It even provides an introduction to setting up CI/CD pipelines on a Kubernetes cluster, making it a valuable resource.

What makes this book stand out is its hands-on approach. The authors have made it a point to include practical examples, guiding you through the process of deploying real-world applications on Kubernetes.

Book Review 2: The DevOps 2.3 Toolkit: Kubernetes

Written by Viktor Farcic, a seasoned DevOps consultant, “The DevOps 2.3 Toolkit: Kubernetes” is a comprehensive guide to deploying, scaling, and managing Docker and Kubernetes clusters. The book explores creating a fully automated Continuous Deployment system on Kubernetes, making it a must-read for DevOps professionals.

This book offers a deeper understanding of how to implement CI/CD practices in a Kubernetes environment. From detailed insights into cluster setup, and networking policies, to secrets management, the book covers all significant aspects of Kubernetes.

Also, the emphasis on the hands-on approach, along with providing the entire source code of the examples used, helps to bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical application. This blend of theory and practice is what earns this book its place in our top 5.

Book Review 3: Continuous Delivery with Docker and Jenkins

Authored by Rafal Leszko, “Continuous Delivery with Docker and Jenkins” is an essential resource for anyone seeking to understand and apply modern delivery practices in a cloud-native environment. It’s a well-rounded guide that covers not only Kubernetes and Jenkins but also Docker, equipping you with a broader knowledge of container technologies and CI/CD pipelines.

The book provides a detailed guide on how to create a Jenkins pipeline to test, build, and deploy applications on Kubernetes, making it an invaluable guide for building reliable and robust CI/CD pipelines. Its real-life examples and hands-on exercises make the learning process engaging and interactive.

Book Review 4: Mastering Kubernetes

Penned by Gigi Sayfan, a veteran in the software development field, “Mastering Kubernetes” is an advanced guide that delves deep into the various aspects of Kubernetes. The book covers advanced Kubernetes topics such as Federation, custom resources, and custom controllers, and it is ideal for those who already have a foundational understanding of Kubernetes and want to take their knowledge to the next level.

What sets this book apart is its in-depth discussion on deploying and managing applications on Kubernetes using Helm, which is a popular Kubernetes package manager. Additionally, it dives into the challenges and solutions of implementing CI/CD in a Kubernetes environment, making it a worthy addition to our top 5.

Book Review 5: Kubernetes in Action

“Kubernetes in Action” is a comprehensive guide to Kubernetes written by Marko Luksa, a seasoned software engineer. The book thoroughly covers the fundamentals of Kubernetes, and the later sections delve into more complex topics such as service discovery, horizontal and vertical scaling, and security.

The detailed sections on rolling updates, deploying, and scaling applications make this book an excellent resource for understanding CI/CD pipeline setup in a Kubernetes environment. Practical examples and real-world scenarios in the book provide a hands-on approach to learning, making it a great asset for beginners and intermediates alike.

In conclusion, these books provide comprehensive and detailed information on setting up a Kubernetes CI/CD pipeline. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced Kubernetes user, these books will help you to understand the different tools and techniques available for deploying and managing your applications on Kubernetes.

How to Make the Most of These Books

These books are not just meant to be read – they’re meant to be worked with. When going through these books, it’s highly beneficial to have a Kubernetes environment that you can use for practice. You could use minikube, kind, or even a free-tier cloud Kubernetes service for this purpose.

Always work alongside the books. Implement the examples, and then try variations on them. Nothing helps you understand a concept more than seeing it in action and then manipulating it to suit your specific needs.

Remember to combine knowledge from these different books. Each author will have their own perspective, and by integrating these diverse viewpoints, you’ll get a much richer understanding of Kubernetes and CI/CD pipeline setup.


Understanding Kubernetes and CI/CD pipeline setup is a crucial aspect of modern software development and operations. It’s a complex area, but with the right resources, it’s one that can be mastered.

These top 5 books have been carefully selected to provide a comprehensive overview of Kubernetes and CI/CD pipeline setup. By working through them, you’ll gain a robust understanding of how to leverage these tools to create more efficient, reliable, and robust software development processes.

Happy reading and happy learning!

12. References

  • Hightower, K., Burns, B., & Beda, J. (2017). Kubernetes: Up & Running: Dive into the Future of Infrastructure. O’Reilly Media.
  • Farcic, V. (2019). The DevOps 2.3 Toolkit: Kubernetes. Independently published.
  • Leszko, R. (2018). Continuous Delivery with Docker and Jenkins. Packt Publishing.
  • Sayfan, G. (2017). Mastering Kubernetes: Large-scale container deployment and management. Packt Publishing.
  • Luksa, M. (2018). Kubernetes in Action. Manning Publications.

Atiqur Rahman

I am MD. Atiqur Rahman graduated from BUET and is an AWS-certified solutions architect. I have successfully achieved 6 certifications from AWS including Cloud Practitioner, Solutions Architect, SysOps Administrator, and Developer Associate. I have more than 8 years of working experience as a DevOps engineer designing complex SAAS applications.

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