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Adding a private Docker registry to a PKS 1.5 Windows Kubernetes cluster

09/10/2019 Comments off

Pivotal Container Service (PKS) 1.5 and Kubernetes 1.14 bring *beta* support for Workers running Windows.  This means that we can provide the advantages of Kubernetes to a huge array of applications running on Windows.  I see this especially useful for Windows applications that you don’t have the source code for and/or do not want to invest in reworking it for .NET core or languages that run on Linux.

In nearly all cases, you’ll need an image with your applications’ dependencies or configuration and in the real world, we don’t want those in the public space like dockerhub.  Enter Private Docker Repositories.

PKS Enterprise includes VMware Harbor as a private registry, it’s very easy to deploy alongside PKS and provides a lot of important functionality.  The Harbor interface uses TLS/SSL; you may use a self-signed, enterprise PKI-signed or public CA-signed certificate.  If you chose to not use a public CA-signed certificate ($!), the self-signed or PKI-signed certificate must be trusted by the docker engine on each Kubernetes worker node.

Clusters based on Ubuntu Xenial Stemcells:

  • The operator/administrator simply puts the CA certificate into the “Trusted Certificates” box of the Security section in Ops Manager.
  • When BOSH creates the VMs for kubernetes clusters, the trusted certificates are added to the certificate store automatically.
  • If using an enterprise PKI where all of the internal certificates are signed by the Enterprise CA, this method makes it very easy to trust and “un-trust” CAs.

Clusters based on Windows 2019 Stemcells:

This is one of those tasks that is easier to perform on Linux that it is on Windows.  Unfortunately, Windows does not automatically add the Trusted Certificates from Ops Manager to the certificate store, so extra steps are required.

    1. Obtain the Registry CA Certificate.  In Harbor, you may click the “REGISTRY CERTIFICATE” link while in a Project.  Save the certificate to where the BOSH cli is installed (Ops Manager typically).
    2.  Connect BOSH cli to director.  This may be done on the Ops Manager.
    3. List BOSH-managed vms to identify the service_instance deployment corresponding to the targeted K8s cluster by matching the VM IP address to the IP address of the master node as reported by PKS cluster.
    4. Run this command to copy the certificate to the Windows worker
      bosh -e ENV -d DEPLOYMENT scp root.cer WINDOWS-WORKER:/
      • ENV – your environment alias in the BOSH cli
      • DEPLOYMENT – the BOSH deployment that corresponds to the k8s cluster; ex: service-instance_921bd35d-c46d-4e7a-a289-b577ff743e15
      • WINDOWS-WORKER – the instance name of the specific Windows worker VM; ex: windows-worker/277536dd-a7e6-446b-acf7-97770be18144

      This command copies the local file named root.cer to the root folder on the Windows VM

    5. Use BOSH to SSH into the Windows Worker.
      bosh -e ENV -d DEPLOYMENT ssh WINDOWS-WORKER
      • ENV – your environment alias in the BOSH cli
      • DEPLOYMENT – the BOSH deployment that corresponds to the k8s cluster; ex: service-instance_921bd35d-c46d-4e7a-a289-b577ff743e15
      • WINDOWS-WORKER – the instance name of the specific Windows worker VM; ex: windows-worker/277536dd-a7e6-446b-acf7-97770be18144

      SSH into Windows node, notice root.cer on the filesystem

    6. In the Windows SSH session run “powershell.exe” to enter powershell
    7. At the PS prompt, enter
      Import-certificate -filepath .\root.cer -CertStoreLocation Cert:\LocalMachine\Root

      The example above imports the local file “root.cer” into the Trusted Root Certificate Store

    8. Type “exit” twice to exit PS and SSH
    9. Repeat steps 5-8 for each worker node.

Add docker-registry secret to k8s cluster

Whether the k8s cluster is running Windows workers or not, you’ll want to add credentials for authenticating to harbor.  These credentials are stored in a secret. To add the secret, use this command:

kubectl create secret docker-registry harbor \
--docker-server=HARBOR_FQDN \
--docker-username=HARBOR_USER \
--docker-password=USER_PASS \
--docker-email=USER_EMAIL
  • HARBOR_FQDN – FQDN for local/private Harbor registry
  • HARBOR_USER – name of user in Harbor with access to project and repos containing the desired images
  • USER_PASS – username for the above account
  • USER_EMAIL – email adddress for the above account

Note that this secret is namespaced; it needs to be added to the namespace of the deployments that will reference it

More info

Here’s an example deployment yaml for a Windows K8s cluster that uses a local private docker registry.  Note that Windows clusters cannot leverage NSX-T yet, so this example uses a NodePort to expose the service.

Logging into a Kubernetes cluster with an OIDC LDAP account

09/09/2019 Comments off

I confess, most of my experience with Kubernetes is with Pivotal Container Service (PKS) Enterprise.  PKS makes it rather easy to get started and I found that I took some tasks for granted.

In PKS Enterprise, one can use the pks cli to not only life-cycle clusters, but to obtain the credentials to the cluster and automatically update the kubeconfig with the account information.  So, administrative/operations users can run the command “pks get-credentials my-cluster” to have a kubeconfig updated with the authentication tokens and parameters to connect to my-cluster.

K8s OIDC using UAA on PKS

The PKS controller includes the User Account and Authentication (UAA) component, which is used to authenticate users into PKS Enterprise.  UAA can also be easily configured to connect to an existing LDAP service – this is the desired configuration in most organizations so that users account exist in one place (Active Directory in my example).

So, I found myself wondering “I don’t want to provide the PKS CLI to developers, so how can they connect kubectl to the cluster?”

Assumptions:

  • PKS Enterprise on vSphere (with or without NSX-T)
  • Active Directory
  • Developer user account belongs to the k8s-devs security group in AD

Prerequisite configuration:

  1. UAA on PKS configured a with UAA User Account Store: LDAP Server.  This links UAA to LDAP/Active Directory
  2. User Search Filter: userPrincipalName={0}  This means that users can login as user@domain.tld
  3. Group Search Filter: member={0} This ensures that AD groups may be used rather than specifying individual users
  4. Configure created clusters to use UAA as the OIDC provider: Enabled  This pre-configures the kubernetes API to use OpenID Connect with UAA. If not using PKS Enterprise, you’ll need to provide another OpenID Connect-Compliant endpoint (like Dex), link it to Active Directory and update the kubernetes cluster api manually to use the OpenID Authentication.

 

Operator: Create Role and RoleBinding:

While authentication is handled by OIDC/UAA/LDAP, Authorization must be configured on the cluster to provide access to resources via RBAC.  This is done by defining a Role (or clusterRole) that indicates what actions may be taken on what resources and a RoleBinding which links the Role to one or more “subjects”.

  1.  Authenticate to kubernetes cluster with an administrative account (for example, using PKS cli to connect)
  2.  Create yaml file for our Role and RoleBinding:
    kind: Role
    apiVersion: rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1
    metadata:
      name: developers
    rules:
    - apiGroups: ["", "extensions", "apps"]
      resources: ["deployments", "replicasets", "pods"]
      verbs: ["get", "list", "watch", "create", "update", "patch", "delete"] 
      # You can also use ["*"]
    ---
    kind: RoleBinding
    apiVersion: rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1beta1
    metadata:
      name: developer-dev-binding
    subjects:
    - kind: Group
      name: k8s-devs
      apiGroup: rbac.authorization.k8s.io
    roleRef:
      kind: Role
      name: developers
      apiGroup: rbac.authorization.k8s.io
    

    In the example above, we’re creating a Role named “developers”, granting access to the core, extensions and apps API groups and several actions against deployments, replicaSets and pods. Notice that developers in this role would have have access to secrets (for example)
    The example RoleBinding binds a group named “k8s-devs” to the developers role. Notice that we have not created the k8s-devs group in Kubernetes or UAA; it exists in Active Directory

  3. Use Kubectl to apply the yaml, creating the Role and Rolebinding in the targeted namespace

 

Creating the kubeconfig – the hard way

To get our developer connected with kubectl, they’ll need a kubeconfig with the authentication and connection details.  The Hard way steps are:

  1. Operator obtains the cluster’s certificate authority data.  This can be done via curl or by copying the value from the existing kubeconfig.
  2. Operator creates a template kubeconfig, replacing the value specified, then sends it to the developer user
    apiVersion: v1
    clusters:
    - cluster:
      certificate-authority-data: <OBTAINED IN STEP 1 >
      server: < FQDN to Master Node. >
      name: PROVIDED-BY-ADMIN
    contexts:
    - context:
        cluster: PROVIDED-BY-ADMIN
        user: PROVIDED-BY-USER
      name:  PROVIDED-BY-ADMIN
    current-context: PROVIDED-BY-ADMIN
    kind: Config
    preferences: {}
    users:
    - name: PROVIDED-BY-USER
      user:
        auth-provider:
          config:
            client-id: pks_cluster_client
            cluster_client_secret: ""
            id-token: PROVIDED-BY-USER
            idp-issuer-url: https://PROVIDED-BY-ADMIN:8443/oauth/token
            refresh-token:  PROVIDED-BY-USER
          name: oidc
  3. The developer user obtains the id_token and refresh_token from UAA, via a curl command
    curl 'https://PKS-API:8443/oauth/token' -k -XPOST -H
    'Accept: application/json' -d "client_id=pks_cluster_client&client_secret=""&grant_type=password&username=UAA-USERNAME&response_type=id_token" --data-urlencode password=UAA-PASSWORD
  4. The developer user updates the kubeconfig with the id_token and refresh token in the kubeconfig

 

Creating the kubeconfig – the easy way

Assuming the developer is using Mac or Linux…

  1. Install jq on developer workstation
  2. Download the get-pks-k8s-config.sh script, make it executable (chmod +x get-pks.k8s.config.sh)
  3. Execute the script (replace the params with your own)
    ./get-pks-k8s-config.sh --API=api.pks.mydomain.com \
    --CLUSTER=cl1.pks.mydomain.com \
    --USER=dev1@mydomain.com \
    --NS=scratch
    • API – FQDN to PKS Controller, for UAA
    • CLUSTER – FQDN to master node of k8s cluster
    • USER – userPrincipalName for the user
    • NS – Namespace to target; optional
  4. After entering the user’s password, the script will set the params in the kubeconfig and switch context automatically

Try it out
Our developer user should able to “see” pods but not namespaces for example:

dev1 can see pods but not namespaces

 

Creating the kubeconfig – the easiest way

  1. Provide the developer with the PKS CLI tool, remember we have not added them to any group or role with PKS admin permissions.
  2. Provide the developer with the PKS API endpoint FQDN and the cluster name
  3. The developer may run this command to generate the updated kubeconfig and set the current context
    pks get-kubeconfig CLUSTERNAME -a API -u USER -k

    • CLUSTERNAME is the name of the cluster
    • API – FQDN to PKS Controller
    • USER – userPrincipalName for the user
  4. You’ll be prompted for the account password. Once entered, the tool will fetch the user-specific kubeconfig.

Use PKS CLI to get the kubeconfig

 

Manually creating a Kubernetes cluster with kubeadm

04/22/2019 Comments off

I’ve talked about Pivotal Container Service (PKS) before and now work for Pivotal, so I’ve frequently got K8s on my mind.  I’ve discussed at length the benefits of PKS and the creation of K8s clusters, but didn’t have much of a point of reference for alternatives.  I know about Kelsey Hightower’s book and was looking for something a little less in-the-weeds.

Enter kubeadm, included in recent versions of K8s.  With this tool, you’re better able to understand what goes into a cluster, how the master and workers are related and how the networking is organized.  I really wanted to stand up a K8s cluster alongside a PKS-managed cluster in order to better understand the differences (if any).  This is also a part of the Linux Foundation training “Kubernetes Fundamentals”.  I don’t want to spoil the course for you, but will point to some of the docs on kubernetes.io

 

Getting Ready

I used VMware Fusion on the Macbook to create and run two Ubuntu 18.04 VMs.  Each was a linked clone with 2GB RAM, 1vCPU.  Had to make sure that they had different MAC addresses, IP, UUIDs and host names. I’m sure you can use nearly any virtualization tool to get your VMs running.  Once running, be sure you can SSH into each.

Install Docker

I thought, “hey I’ve done this before” and just installed Docker as per usual, but that method does not leverage the correct cgroup driver, so we’ll want to install Docker with the script found here.

Install Tools

Once again, the kubernetes.io site provides commands to properly install kubeadm, kubelet and kubectl on our Ubuntu nodes.  Use the commands on that page to ensure kubelet is installed and held to the correct version.

Choose your CNI pod network

Ok, what?  CNI is the Container Network Interface is a specification for networking add-ons for K8s.  Kubeadm requires that we use a pod network addon that uses the CNI spec.  The pod network – we may have only one per k8s cluster – is the network that the pods communicate on; think of it as using a NAT rather than the network you’ve actually assigned to the Ubuntu nodes.  Further, this can be confusing, because this address space is not what is actually assigned to the pods.  This address space is used when we “expose” a service.  What pod-network-cidr you assign depends on which network add-on you select.  In my case, I went with Canal as it seems to be both powerful and flexible.  Also, the pod-network cidr used by Calico is “192.168.0.0/16”, which is already in use in my home lab – it may not have actually been a conflict, but it certainly would be confusing if it were in use twice.

Create the master node
Make sure you’re ssh’d into your designated “Master” Ubuntu VM, make sure that you’ve installed kubeadm, kubelet, kubectl and docker from the steps above.  If you also choose canal, you’ll initialize the master node (not on the worker node – we’ll have a different command for that one) by running

kubeadm init –pod-network-cidr=10.244.0.0/16

Exactly that CIDR. It’ll take a few minutes to download, install and configure the k8s components.  When the initialization has completed, you’ll see a message like this:

Your Kubernetes control-plane has initialized successfully!

To start using your cluster, you need to run the following as a regular user:

mkdir -p $HOME/.kube
sudo cp -i /etc/kubernetes/admin.conf $HOME/.kube/config
sudo chown $(id -u):$(id -g) $HOME/.kube/config

You should now deploy a pod network to the cluster.
Run “kubectl apply -f [podnetwork].yaml” with one of the options listed at:
https://kubernetes.io/docs/concepts/cluster-administration/addons/

Then you can join any number of worker nodes by running the following on each as root:

kubeadm join 192.168.1.129:6443 –token zdjzrp.5jad4gihqjo46olg \
–discovery-token-ca-cert-hash sha256:90d1b349aa93a7130ee91668e4e763a4c29e5fc1502060191b38ea0e31d3cec8

Using, this, we’ll exit su and run the

mkdir -p $HOME/.kube
sudo cp -i /etc/kubernetes/admin.conf $HOME/.kube/config
sudo chown $(id -u):$(id -g) $HOME/.kube/config

Make a note of the bottom section as we’ll need it in order to join our worker to the newly-formed cluster.

Sanity-check:

On the master, run kubectl get nodes.  you’ll notice that we have 1 node and it’s not ready:

Install the network pod add-on

Referencing the docs, you’ll note that Canal has a couple yaml files to be applied to our cluster.  So, again on our master node, we’ll run these commands to install and configure Canal:


kubectl apply -f https://docs.projectcalico.org/v3.3/getting-started/kubernetes/installation/hosted/canal/rbac.yaml
kubectl apply -f https://docs.projectcalico.org/v3.3/getting-started/kubernetes/installation/hosted/canal/canal.yaml

Sanity-check:

On the master, run kubectl get nodes.  You’ll now notice that we still have 1 node but now it’s ready:

Enable pod placement on master
By default, the cluster will not put pods on the master node. If you want to use a single-node cluster or use compute capacity on the master node for pods, we’ll need to remove the taint.

Default taint on master

We’ll remove the taint with the command

kubectl taint nodes –all node-role.kubernetes.io/master-

Join worker to cluster
You saved the output from kubeadm init earlier, right? We’ll need that now to join the worker to the cluster. On the worker VM, become root via sudo su – and run that command:

Join worker to cluster

Now, back on master, we run kubectl get nodes and can see both nodes!

Master and Worker Ready

Summary and Next Steps

At this point, we have a functional kubernetes cluster with 1 master and 1 worker.  Next in this series, we’ll deploy some applications and compare the behavior to a PKS-managed kubernetes cluster.