🎡 Ford Motor Company adopts Kubernetes and Red Hat OpenShift 🎡

Vrukshali Torawane
5 min readMar 12, 2021

OpenShift is a family of containerization software products developed by Red Hat.

Its flagship product is the OpenShift Container Platform — an on-premises platform as a service built around Docker containers orchestrated and managed by Kubernetes on a foundation of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. The family’s other products provide this platform through different environments: OKD serves as the community-driven upstream, OpenShift Online is the platform offered as software as a service, and Openshift Dedicated is the platform offered as a managed service.

The OpenShift Console has developer and administrator oriented views. Administrator views allow one to monitor container resources and container health, manage users, work with operators, etc. Developer views are oriented around working with application resources within a namespace. OpenShift also provides a CLI that supports a superset of the actions that the Kubernetes CLI provides.

“Kubernetes and OpenShift have really forced us to think differently about our problems, because we can’t solve new business challenges with traditional approaches... We’re now well situated for future success.”                                               - Satish Puranam
Technical Specialist,
Cloud Platforms,
Ford Motor Company


About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan. The company designs, manufactures, markets and services a full line of Ford cars, trucks, SUVs, electrified vehicles and Lincoln luxury vehicles, provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company and is pursuing leadership positions in electrification; mobility solutions, including self-driving services; and connected services. Ford employs approximately 190,000 people worldwide.

Ford Motor Company seeks to provide mobility solutions at accessible prices to its customers, including dealerships and parts distributors who sell to a variety of retail and commercial consumers. To speed delivery and simplify maintenance, the company sought to create a container-based application platform to modernize its legacy stateful applications and optimize its hardware use. With this platform, based on Red Hat OpenShift and supported by Red Hat and Sysdig technology, Ford has improved developer productivity, enhanced its security and compliance approach, and optimized its hardware use to improve operating costs. Now, the company can focus on exploring new ways to innovate, from big data to machine learning and artificial intelligence.

About Sysdig

Sysdig enables companies to confidently run cloud-native workloads in production. With the Sysdig Secure DevOps Platform, cloud teams embed
security, validate compliance and maximize performance and availability. The Sysdig platform is open by design, with the scale, performance, and usability
enterprises demand. The largest companies rely on Sysdig for cloud-native security and visibility.


  • Improved productivity with standardized development environment and self-service provisioning
  • Enhanced security with enterprise technology from Red Hat and continuous monitoring provided by Sysdig
  • Significantly reduced hardware costs by running OpenShift on bare metal

Automotive innovation requires modern platform to enhance legacy applications

Performance and security improvements help Ford deliver services and work with partners more efficiently

> Significantly increased developer productivity

Enhanced security and compliance with enterprise container and monitoring technology

Companies in the automotive industry must comply with various security standards and regulations, such as Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and personal data protection standards. When creating its new container platform, Ford sought to balance providing access to partners and developers with ensuring vulnerabilities and updates were addressed and working toward future adoption of a DevSecOps approach.

“In a container environment, moving applications and code continuously, security needs to be automated and built in from when a container is created,” said Payal Chakravarty, Vice President, Products, Sysdig. “Sysdig provides real-time vulnerability management in CI/CD pipelines. Security checks are in place to analyze code and identify issues before production.”

To support this approach, Ford standardized on Red Hat container images and registries using Red Hat Quay. OpenShift provides a unified management interface across Ford’s entire infrastructure, as well as built-in Security Enhanced Linux (SELinux) capabilities.

Sysdig Secure and Sysdig Monitor help Ford enhance this protection with improved, data-based insight into container infrastructure to run OpenShift in a compliant way.

“Sysdig can tell us about a container’s network activity, can help us protect multiple containers running on a single host, and provide continuous monitoring and alerts,” said Puranam.

New container-based application platform uses enterprise and community open source technology

Successful adoption of OpenShift and DevOps creates foundation for new opportunities to innovate

Ford is already experiencing significant growth in demand for its OpenShift-based applications and services. It aims to achieve migration of most of its on-premise, legacy deployments within the next few years.

The company is also looking for ways to use its container platform environment to address opportunities like big data, mobility, machine learning, and AI to continue delivering high-quality, timely services to its customers worldwide.

“Kubernetes and OpenShift have really forced us to think differently about our problems, because we can’t solve new business challenges with traditional approaches. Innovation and constantly exploring and questioning are the only way we can move forward,” said Puranam. “It’s a journey, but one that we have a good start on. Thanks to having the right set of partners, with both Red Hat and Sysdig, we’re well-situated for future success.”

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