Kubernetes and Docker Swarm have many of the same features, but each tool shines in different aspects.
Installation & Cluster Config
Setup is very complicated, but once installed cluster is robust.
Installation is very simple, but the cluster is not robust
High learning curve (but has more features)
Lightweight and easy to use (but limited functionality)
Detailed native dashboards
No out-of-the-box dashboards (but you can integrate a third-party tool)
Difficult to start a cluster (but the cluster is very strong once set up)
Easy to start a cluster
Self-healing, intelligent scheduling, and replication features
Availability controls and service duplication
All-in-one scaling based on traffic
Values scaling quickly (approx. 5x faster than K8s) over scaling automatically
Kubernetes can do auto-scaling.
Docker swarm cannot do auto-scaling.
Has built-in monitoring and logging
Basic server log and event tools, but needs a third-party tool for advanced monitoring
Manual intervention needed for load balancing traffic between different containers and pods
Docker swarm does auto load balancing of traffic between containers in the cluster.
Rolling Updates & Rollbacks
Can deploy rolling updates and does automatic rollbacks
Can deploy rolling updates, but not automatic rollback.
Can share storage volumes only with the other containers in the same pod.
Can share storage volumes with any other container.
Relies on transport layer security (TLS) and access control-related tasks
Needs a separate CLI
Integrated Docker CLI, which can limit the functionality in some use cases
Optimal use case
High-demand apps with a complex configuration
Simple apps that are quick to deploy and easy to manage