Monthly archives "May"

2 Articles

Deploying Kubernetes with Kube-Spray

I should first admit OpenShift 4 is slowly recovering from its architectural do-over. I’m still missing something that would be production ready, and quite disappointed by the waste of resources, violent upgrades, broken CSI, somewhat unstable RH-CoreOS, a complicated deployment scheme when dealing with bare-metal, … among lesser critical bugs.

OpenShift 3 is still an interesting platform hosting production workloads, although its being based on Kubernetes 1.11 makes it quite an old version already.

After some experimentation on a Raspberry-Pi lab, I figured I would give Kubernetes a try on x86. Doing so, I would be looking at kube-spray.

If you’re familiar with OpenShift 3 cluster deployments, you may have been using openshift-ansible already. Kube-spray is a similar solution, focused on Kubernetes, simplifying the process of bootstrapping, scaling and upgrading highly available clusters.

Currently, kube-spray allows for deploying Kubernetes with container runtimes such as docker, cri-o, containerd, SDN based on flannel, weave, calico, … as well as a registry, some nginx based ingress controller, certs manager controller, integrated metrics, or the localvolumes, rbd and cephfs provisioner plugins.

Comparing with OpenShift 4, the main missing components would be the cluster and developer consoles, RBAC integrating with users and groups from some third-party authentication provider. Arguably, the OLM, though I never really liked that one — makes your operators deployment quite abstract, and complicated to troubleshoot, as it involves several namespaces and containers, … The Prometheus Operator, that could still be deployed manually.
I can confirm everything works perfectly deploying on Debian Buster nodes, with containerd and calico. Keeping pretty much all defaults in place and activating all addons.

The sample variables shipping with kube-spray are pretty much on point. We would create an inventory file, such as the following:

        infra.utgb/zone: momos-adm
        infra.utgb/zone: thaoatmos-adm
        infra.utgb/zone: moros-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: momos-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: thanatos-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: moros-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: momos-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: moros-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: momos-adm
      node_labels: “true”
        infra.utgb/zone: moros-adm
        hosts: {}

Then, we’ll edit the sample group_vars/etcd.yml:

etcd_compaction_retention: “8”
etcd_metrics: basic
etcd_memory_limit: 5GB
etcd_quota_backend_bytes: 2147483648
# ^ WARNING: sample var tells about “2G”
# which results in etcd not starting (deployment_type=host)
# journalctl shows errors such as:
# > invalid value “2G” for ETCD_QUOTA_BACKEND_BYTES: strconv.ParseInt: parsing “2G”: invalid syntax
# Also note: here, I’m setting 20G, not 2.
etcd_deployment_type: host

Next, common variables in group_vars/all/all.yml:

etcd_data_dir: /var/lib/etcd
bin_dir: /usr/local/bin
kubelet_load_modules: true
additional_no_proxy: “*,”
http_proxy: “”
https_proxy: “{{ http_proxy }}”
download_validate_certs: False
cert_management: script
download_container: true
deploy_container_engine: true
  port: 6443
loadbalancer_apiserver_localhost: false
loadbalancer_apiserver_port: 6443

We would also want to customize the variables in group_vars/k8s-cluster/k8s-cluster.yml:

kube_config_dir: /etc/kubernetes
kube_script_dir: “{{ bin_dir }}/kubernetes-scripts”
kube_manifest_dir: “{{ kube_config_dir }}/manifests”
kube_cert_dir: “{{ kube_config_dir }}/ssl”
kube_token_dir: “{{ kube_config_dir }}/tokens”
kube_users_dir: “{{ kube_config_dir }}/users”
kube_api_anonymous_auth: true
kube_version: v1.18.3
kube_image_repo: “”
local_release_dir: “/tmp/releases”
retry_stagger: 5
kube_cert_group: kube-cert
kube_log_level: 2
credentials_dir: “{{ inventory_dir }}/credentials”
kube_api_pwd: “{{ lookup(‘password’, credentials_dir + ‘/kube_user.creds length=15 chars=ascii_letters,digits’) }}”
    pass: “{{ kube_api_pwd }}”
    role: admin
    – system:masters
kube_oidc_auth: false
kube_basic_auth: true
kube_token_auth: true
kube_network_plugin: calico
kube_network_plugin_multus: false
kube_network_node_prefix: 24
kube_apiserver_ip: “{{ kube_service_addresses|ipaddr(‘net’)|ipaddr(1)|ipaddr(‘address’) }}”
kube_apiserver_port: 6443
kube_apiserver_insecure_port: 0
kube_proxy_mode: ipvs
# using metallb, set to true
kube_proxy_strict_arp: false
kube_proxy_nodeport_addresses: []
kube_encrypt_secret_data: false
cluster_name: cluster.local
ndots: 2
kubeconfig_localhost: true
kubectl_localhost: true
dns_mode: coredns
enable_nodelocaldns: true
nodelocaldns_health_port: 9254
enable_coredns_k8s_external: false
coredns_k8s_external_zone: k8s_external.local
enable_coredns_k8s_endpoint_pod_names: false
system_reserved: true
system_memory_reserved: 512M
system_cpu_reserved: 500m
system_master_memory_reserved: 256M
system_master_cpu_reserved: 250m
deploy_netchecker: false
skydns_server: “{{ kube_service_addresses|ipaddr(‘net’)|ipaddr(3)|ipaddr(‘address’) }}”
skydns_server_secondary: “{{ kube_service_addresses|ipaddr(‘net’)|ipaddr(4)|ipaddr(‘address’) }}”
dns_domain: “{{ cluster_name }}”
kubelet_deployment_type: host
helm_deployment_type: host
kubeadm_control_plane: false
kubeadm_certificate_key: “{{ lookup(‘password’, credentials_dir + ‘/kubeadm_certificate_key.creds length=64 chars=hexdigits’) | lower }}”
k8s_image_pull_policy: IfNotPresent
kubernetes_audit: false
dynamic_kubelet_configuration: false
default_kubelet_config_dir: “{{ kube_config_dir }}/dynamic_kubelet_dir”
dynamic_kubelet_configuration_dir: “{{ kubelet_config_dir | default(default_kubelet_config_dir) }}”
– Node
podsecuritypolicy_enabled: true
container_manager: containerd
resolvconf_mode: none
etcd_deployment_type: host

Finally, we may enable additional components in group_vars/k8s-cluster/addons.yml:

dashboard_enabled: true
helm_enabled: false

registry_enabled: false
registry_namespace: kube-system
registry_storage_class: rwx-storage
registry_disk_size: 500Gi

metrics_server_enabled: true
metrics_server_kubelet_insecure_tls: true
metrics_server_metric_resolution: 60s
metrics_server_kubelet_preferred_address_types: InternalIP

cephfs_provisioner_enabled: true
cephfs_provisioner_namespace: cephfs-provisioner
cephfs_provisioner_cluster: ceph
cephfs_provisioner_monitors: “,,”
cephfs_provisioner_admin_id: admin
cephfs_provisioner_secret: key returned by ‘ceph auth get client.admin’
cephfs_provisioner_storage_class: rwx-storage
cephfs_provisioner_reclaim_policy: Delete
cephfs_provisioner_claim_root: /volumes
cephfs_provisioner_deterministic_names: true

rbd_provisioner_enabled: true
rbd_provisioner_namespace: rbd-provisioner
rbd_provisioner_replicas: 2
rbd_provisioner_monitors: “,,”
rbd_provisioner_pool: kube
rbd_provisioner_admin_id: admin
rbd_provisioner_secret_name: ceph-secret-admin
rbd_provisioner_secret: key retured by ‘ceph auth get client.admin’
rbd_provisioner_user_id: kube
rbd_provisioner_user_secret_name: ceph-secret-user
rbd_provisioner_user_secret: key returned by ‘ceph auth gt client.kube’
rbd_provisioner_user_secret_namespace: “{{ rbd_provisioner_namespace }}”
rbd_provisioner_fs_type: ext4
rbd_provisioner_image_format: “2”
rbd_provisioner_image_features: layering
rbd_provisioner_storage_class: rwo-storage
rbd_provisioner_reclaim_policy: Delete

ingress_nginx_enabled: true
ingress_nginx_host_network: true
ingress_publish_status_address: “”
ingress_nginx_nodeselector: “true”
ingress_nginx_namespace: ingress-nginx
ingress_nginx_insecure_port: 80
ingress_nginx_secure_port: 443
  map-hash-bucket-size: “512”

cert_manager_enabled: true
cert_manager_namespace: cert-manager

We now have pretty much everything ready. Last, we would deploy some haproxy node, proxying requests to Kubernetes API. To do so, I would use a pair of VMs, with keepalived and haproxy. On both, install necessary packages and configuration:

apt-get update ; apt-get install keepalived haproxy hatop
cat << EOF>/etc/keepalived/keepalived.conf
global_defs {
  notification_email {
 notification_email_from keepalive@$(hostname -f)
  smtp_connect_timeout 30

vrrp_instance VI_1 {
  state MASTER
  interface ens3
  virtual_router_id 101
  priority 10
  advert_int 101
  authentication {
    auth_type PASS
    auth_pass your_secret
  virtual_ipaddress {
echo net.ipv4.conf.all.forwarding=1 >>/etc/sysctl.conf
sysctl -w net.ipv4.conf.all.forwarding=1
systemctl restart keepalived && systemctl enable keepalived
#hint: use distinct priorities on nodes
cat << EOF>/etc/haproxy/haproxy.cfg
  log /dev/log local0
  log /dev/log local1 notice
  chroot /var/lib/haproxy
  stats socket /run/haproxy/admin.sock mode 660 level admin expose-fd listeners
  stats timeout 30s
  user haproxy
  group haproxy
  ca-base /etc/ssl/certs
  crt-base /etc/ssl/private
  ssl-default-bind-options no-sslv3

  log global
  option dontlognull
  timeout connect 5000
  timeout client 50000
  timeout server 50000
  errorfile 400 /etc/haproxy/errors/400.http
  errorfile 403 /etc/haproxy/errors/403.http
  errorfile 408 /etc/haproxy/errors/408.http
  errorfile 500 /etc/haproxy/errors/500.http
  errorfile 502 /etc/haproxy/errors/502.http
  errorfile 503 /etc/haproxy/errors/503.http
  errorfile 504 /etc/haproxy/errors/504.http

listen kubernetes-apiserver-https
  mode tcp
  option log-health-checks
  server master1 check check-ssl verify none inter 10s
  server master2 check check-ssl verify none inter 10s
  server master3 check check-ssl verify none inter 10s
  balance roundrobin
systemctl restart haproxy && systemctl enable haproxy
cat << EOF>/etc/profile.d/
alias hatop=’hatop -s /run/haproxy/admin.sock’

We may now deploy our cluster:

ansible -i path/to/inventory cluster.yml

For a 10 nodes cluster, it shouldn’t take more than an hour.
It is quite nice, to see you can have some reliable Kubernetes deployment, with less than 60 infra Pods.

I’m also noticing that while the CSI provisioner is being used, creating Ceph RBD and CephFS volumes: the host is still in charge of mounting our those volumes – which is, in a way, a workaround to the CSI attacher plugins.
Although, on that note, I’ve heard those issues with blocked volumes during nodes failures was in its way to being solved, involving a fix to the CSI spec.
Sooner or later, we should be able to use the full CSI stack.

All in all, kube-spray is quite a satisfying solution.
Having struggled quite a lot with openshift-ansible, and not quite yet satisfied with their lasts installer, kube-spray definitely feels like some reliable piece of software, code is well organized, it goes straight to the point, …
Besides, I need a break from CentOS. I’m amazed I did not try it earlier.

Migrating OpenShift 3 Container Runtime

While reaching its end of life, OpenShift 3 remains widely used, and in some cases still more reliable than its successor, OpenShift 4.

OpenShift was historically built on top of Docker, and introduced support for Cri-O, an alternative container runtime. Cri-o integration into OpenShift reached GA with its release 3.9, mid 2018 — based on Kubernetes 1.9 & Cri-o 1.9. Although it has not been without a few hiccups.

As of today, there are still a few bugs involving RPC overflows, when lots of containers are running on a Cri-O nodes, that could result in some operations, addressing all containers, to fail – eg: drains. Or some SDN corruptions, that I suspect to be directly related with Cri-O. Pending RFE to implement SELinux audit logging, similar to what already exists for Docker, … And the fact OpenShift 4 drops Docker support, while ideologically commendable, is quite a bold move right now, considering the youth of Cri-O.


Lately, a customer of mine contacted me regarding a cluster, as I did help them to deploy it. Mid 2019, an architect recommended the with OpenShift 3.11, Cri-O, and GlusterFS CNS storage – aka OCS, OpenShift Container Storage. We did set it up, cluster has been running for almost a year now, when customer opened a case with their support, complaining about an issue with GlusterFS containers behaving unexpectedly.

After a few weeks of troubleshooting, support got back to customer, arguing their setup was not supported, pointing us to a KB item none of us was aware of so far: while OpenShift 3.11 is fully supported with both Cri-O and GlusterFS CNS storage, their combination is not: only Docker, may be used with GlusterFS.

When realizing this, we had to come up with a plan, migrating container runtime from Cri-O to Docker, on any OpenShift node hosting GlusterFS, so support would keep investigating the original issue. Lacking any documentation covering such a migration, I’ve been deploying a lab, reproducing my customer’s cluster.


We will simplify it to an 11 nodes cluster: 3 masters, 3 gluster, 3 ingress, 2 computes. The GlusterFS nodes would also be hosting Prometheus and Hawkular. The Ingress nodes would host the Docker registry and OpenShift routers. We would also deploy a Git server and a few dummy Pods on the compute nodes, hosting some sources and generating activity on GlusterFS backed persistent volumes.

Having reproduced customer’s setup as close as I could, I would then repeat the following process, re-deploying all my GlusterFS nodes. First, let’s pick a node and drain it:

$ oc adm cordon gluster1.demo
$ oc adm drain gluster1.demo --ignore-daemonsets --delete-local-data

Next, we will connect that node, stop OpenShift services, container runtime, dnsmasq, purge some packages, … It will not clean up everything, though would be good enough for us:

# systemctl stop atomic-openshift-node
# systemctl stop crio
# systemctl stop docker
# systemctl disable atomic-openshift-node
# systemctl disable crio
# systemctl disable docker
# grep BOOTSTRAP_CONFIG /etc/sysconfig/atomic-openshift-node
# cp -f /etc/origin/node/resolv.conf /etc/
# systemctl stop dnsmasq
# systemctl disable dnsmasq
# yum -y remove criu docker atomic-openshift-excluder atomic-openshift-docker-excluder cri-tools \
    atomic-openshift-hyperkube atomic-openshift-node docker-client cri-o atomic-openshift-clients \
# rm -fr /etc/origin /etc/dnsmasq.d/* /etc/sysconfig/atomic-openshift-node.rpmsave
# reboot

Once node would have rebooted, we may connect back, confirm DNS resolution still works, that container runtimes are gone, … Then we will delete the node from the API:

$ oc delete node gluster1.demo

Next, we would edit our Ansible inventory, reconfiguring that node to only use Docker. In the inventory file, we would add to that node variables some openshift_use_crio=False, overriding some default defined in our group_vars/OSEv3.yaml.

We would also change the openshift_node_group_name variable, to remove the Cri-o specifics from that node kubelet configuration. Note, in some cases, this could involved editing some custom openshift_node_groups definition. For most common deployments, we may only switch the node group name from a crio variant to its docker equivalent (eg: from node-config-infra-crio to node-config-infra).

Finally, still editing Ansible inventory, we would move our migrating node definition, out of the nodes group, and into the new_nodes one — doing so, if you never had to scale that cluster before, be careful that group should inherit your custom OSEv3 settings, maybe set it as children of the OSEv3 host group, though make sure it’s not a member of the node one. At that stage, it is also recommended to have fixed both OpenShift and GlusterFS versions, up to their patch number — in our case, we’re using OCP 3.11.161, OCS 3.11.4.

Make the the node groups configuration is up to date:

$ oc delete -n openshift-node custom-node-group-gfs1 #not necessary if using default node groups
$ ansible-playbook -i inventory /usr/share/ansible/openshift-ansible/playbooks/openshift-master/openshift_node_group.yml

Then, we may proceed as if adding a new node to our cluster:

$ ansible-playbook -i inventory /usr/share/ansible/openshift-ansible/playbooks/openshift-node/scaleup.yml

As soon as the node would have joined back our cluster, the GlusterFS container we were missing should start, using the exact same local volumes and configuration, only now it uses Docker.

Once that GlusterFS Pod is marked back healthy, rsh into any GlusterFS container and query for your volumes health:

$ oc rsh -n glusterfs-namespace ds/glusterfs-clustername
sh-4.2# gluster volume list | while read vol; do
gluster volume heal $vol info;

Internal healing mechanisms may not fix all issues, be sure your cluster is healthy before migrating another node. Meanwhile, we would edit back Ansible inventory and make sure to move our node, out of the new_nodes group and back into its original location.

Repeat with all node you need to migrate. Eventually, the openshift_use_crio definition could be moved into some host group settings, avoiding multiple definitions in nodes variables.

To further confirm we were not leaving the cluster in some inconsistent state, I’ve later upgraded that lab, to OCP 3.11.200 and OCS 3.11.5, with only one outstanding note: the atomic-openshift-excluder package was missing, on the nodes I did migrate. While it is installed during cluster deployment, it appears this is not the case during cluster scale outs. Could be a bug with openshift-ansible roles or playbooks: in doubt, make sure to install that package manually afterwards.


Overall, everything went great. While undocumented, this process is nothing extraordinary.

As of migrating to Docker-backed GlusterFS containers, I did reproduce that issue customer was complaining about. As well as another one, related to GlusterFS arbiter bricks space exhaustion.

Thank science, OCS4 is now based on Rook, and Ceph.