Kubernetes 建立了强壮的声明式元语用于维护用户请求的预期状态。这些原语是 Kubernetes 的一大特色。此外还有自愈机制，如自动重启，重新调度，以及根据主动控制器而不单是业务流程的需要高对容器进行复制。
Kubernetes 主要适用于包含多个容器的应用,如弹性分布式微服务。它还设计用来将非容器化应用程序栈迁移到 Kubernetes。为此，它包括抽象为分组的松散耦合和紧密耦合的编队，容器，并提供容器查找，并以相对熟悉的方式互相交流的方式。
Kubernetes is primarily targeted at applications composed of multiple containers, such as elastic, distributed micro-services. It is also designed to facilitate migration of non-containerized application stacks to Kubernetes. It therefore includes abstractions for grouping containers in both loosely coupled and tightly coupled formations, and provides ways for containers to find and communicate with each other in relatively familiar ways.
Kubernetes enables users to ask a cluster to run a set of containers. The system automatically chooses hosts to run those containers on. While Kubernetes’s scheduler is currently very simple, we expect it to grow in sophistication over time. Scheduling is a policy-rich, topology-aware, workload-specific function that significantly impacts availability, performance, and capacity. The scheduler needs to take into account individual and collective resource requirements, quality of service requirements, hardware/software/policy constraints, affinity and anti-affinity specifications, data locality, inter-workload interference, deadlines, and so on. Workload-specific requirements will be exposed through the API as necessary.