Introducing the Azure Linux container host for AKS
Published May 23 2023 08:00 AM 39.8K Views

We are excited to announce the general availability of the Azure Linux container host for Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS). The Azure Linux container host for AKS is a lightweight, secure, and reliable OS platform optimized for performance on Azure. With this platform, you can easily deploy and manage your container workloads using the same proven tooling used by many of Microsoft’s own services. This General Availability announcement follows our October preview announcement under the CBL-Mariner project codename. We’d like to thank the customers who provided valuable feedback and insight during our preview. Your insight and feedback helped to shape the product and ensure it’s ready for production workloads.  

Getting started with the Azure Linux container host is as easy as changing the OSSku parameter in your ARM template or other deployment tooling. For more information or to get started check out our documentation.



Security and Reliability Built in

Our goal is to provide a secure and reliable platform to run your workloads. Towards this end, all updates to the Azure Linux container host are first run through a rigorous suite of Azure validation tests. This suite of tests is kept constantly updated as support for new scenarios is added. Additionally, since there are far fewer packages in the container host, the volume of required security patching is lower, and these issues are patched promptly as well. We closely monitor and fully curate the software supply chain, which enables a greater assurance of quality and resilience end to end.


What Customers are saying

Many large Microsoft services have been running in production for more than a year – both at the cloud and at the edge! We announced a public preview of Azure Linux container host for AKS for all customers at Ignite last year. Since then, we have seen significant hands-on interest from customers (thank you!) who have both helped steer the direction of the container host while also ensuring that the platform at scale offered the level of quality and performance they require.



Seismic is a software company that provides sales enablement and marketing automation solutions for businesses. The all-in-one platform is built in the cloud and leverages AI to enable, engage, and improve sales efforts. “At Seismic, AKS has streamlined our operations and allowed us to scale our Azure platform with ease. One of the standout features of AKS is its Azure Linux container host, which is optimized to run on AKS and offers a secure and stable image that we can rely on as we continue to grow. With the Microsoft-managed Linux distribution, we benefit from increased stability and a more streamlined support process." - Euan Davidson, VP Engineering




Founded in 1975, Deutsche Vermögensberatung (DVAG) has grown to become one of Germany's largest autonomous financial consulting firms. It serves approximately 18.000 full-time advisors who provide tailored financial consulting services to their more than 8 million customers. "As a financial advisory company, DVAG requires a highly secure and scalable IT infrastructure to support our operations," says Pascal Müller, Director of IT Development & Strategy at DVAG. "Microsoft Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) offers a managed Kubernetes service that DVAG uses to elastically scale operations. Furthermore, by using Microsoft's Linux distribution, Azure Linux, with AKS, we can take advantage of a highly secure and reliable operating system. Overall, AKS with the Azure Linux distribution can provide DVAG with a highly resilient and efficient IT infrastructure that can support our business needs now and in the future."



Azure Linux container host for AKS benefits

There are several benefits to using Azure Linux as the container host for AKS, including:

  • Optimized to run in Azure: Azure Linux packages and images are run through a suite of Azure validation tests. All packages are built and signed in Microsoft pipelines and are verified prior to image generation.
  • Supply chain security: Uses the same Linux distribution and software built and tested to run securely on Azure.
  • Smaller, leaner Linux: Azure Linux is designed with a minimalist view, a cloud focus. Window managers and other graphical interfaces are removed, resulting in a lower attack surface, reduced dependencies, and a generally smaller footprint. This ultimately helps reduce update interruptions and improves reboot speeds.
  • Operational consistency: Because the same container host is used across AKS in the cloud and edge scenarios like Azure Arc or AKS-HCI, customers know exactly what’s inside, which simplifies management and administrative tasks. This consistency lets customers more effectively shift their workloads to take advantage of true hybrid cloud functionality as well.


Azure Linux Partners and ISV support

We know our customers use a wide assortment of software and solutions. To meet your needs and provide the best experience, we’ve partnered with several ISVs and vendors to ensure your workloads are supported. Below are the key launch partners and vendors who support the Azure Linux container host. For ISVs and vendors who are interested in partnering with us, you can reach out to us at

















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‎May 24 2023 08:18 AM
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