[Rancher] Operational Advisory, 20220113: Related to removal of dockershim in Kubernetes v1.24

This document (000020538) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.



This is a follow-up to the Rancher Operational Advisory that was sent on this topic in December 2020.


In the latest announcement from the Kubernetes blog, it has been notified that dockershim removal has been planned in Kubernetes v1.24, slated for release around April 2022.

What are Rancher's plans to ensure on-going container runtime support in future Kubernetes releases?

We are working on our roadmap to ensure that all Rancher provisioned clusters will continue to operate on a CRI-compliant runtime. 

For existing RKE customers, users will continue to get Kubernetes updates until the shim is officially removed. The removal is currently targeted for April 2022 and will be supported with patches during the 12-month upstream maintenance window. Before the end of maintenance, we fully expect an upgrade path from RKE to RKE2.

Starting Kubernetes v1.21, RKE has support for cri-dockerd. All RKE clusters will need to leverage this functionality before upgrading to k8s 1.24. For instructions to enable this, see here.

Looking forward, containerd is already the default runtime in both K3s and RKE2, so any removal of dockershim will have zero impact on future releases. As with RKE, organizations currently using K3s with the Docker runtime will continue to get Kubernetes updates until the shim is officially removed. The dockershim removal schedule is tracked by the upstream Kubernetes community in Kubernetes Enhancement Proposal (KEP) 2221, Rancher will continue to keep you updated with related news on the roadmap from our product management, as well as information related to migration off of Docker.

Additional Information


This Support Knowledgebase provides a valuable tool for SUSE customers and parties interested in our products and solutions to acquire information, ideas and learn from one another. Materials are provided for informational, personal or non-commercial use within your organization and are presented "AS IS" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND.

  • Document ID:000020538
  • Creation Date: 13-Jan-2022
  • Modified Date:13-Jan-2022
    • SUSE Rancher
    • SUSE Rancher Longhorn

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