Download Rancher Desktop

You can learn more in the installation instructions.

Why use Rancher Desktop?

Container Management

Container management to build, push, and pull images and run containers. It uses the same container runtime as Kubernetes. Built images are immediately available to use in your local workloads without any pushing, pulling, or copying.

Kubernetes Made Simple

Getting started with Kubernetes on your desktop can be a project. Especially if you want to match the version of Kubernetes you run locally to the one you run in production. Rancher Desktop makes it as easy as setting a preference.

Built On Proven Projects

Rancher Desktop leverages proven projects to do the dirty work. That includes Moby, containerd, k3s, kubectl, and more. These projects have demonstrated themselves as trustworthy and provide a foundation you can trust.

Simple Kubernetes Configuration

Through a simple user interface you can configure how Kubernetes works. That includes:

  • Setting the version of Kubernetes you want to use
  • Choosing your container runtime
  • Configuring the system resources for the virtual machine (on Mac and Linux)
  • Resetting Kubernetes or Kubernetes and the container runtime to default with the push of a button
Rancher Desktop Kubernetes settings screen

Port Forwarding

Port forward your Kubernetes services with the click of a button.

Rancher Desktop port forwarding menu

Build and Run Containers

Using with nerdctl or the Docker CLI you can build, run, and otherwise work with images and containers.

Terminal showing docker commands with Rancher Desktop

How it works


Rancher Desktop is an electron based application that wraps other tools while itself providing the user experience to create a simple experience. On MacOS and Linux, Rancher Desktop leverages a virtual machine to run containerd or dockerd and Kubernetes. Windows Subsystem for Linux v2 is leveraged for Windows systems. All you need to do is download and run the application.

How To Get Involved

Rancher Desktop is an open source project hosted on GitHub. Bugs and features are tracked through issues and new code is reviewed through pull requests.

Issues Pull Requests
How To Get Support

Found an issue or have a problem? Community support happens in the #rancher-desktop channel in Slack and in GitHub Issues, where you can search and file new issues.

Rancher Users Slack Issues