Notes based on practice following the Udemy course: Learn DevOps: The Complete Kubernetes Course.

See related GitHub code files here.

Vagrant Commands

To build a plain ubuntu box

mkdir ubuntu
vagrant init ubuntu/xenial64
vagrant up

Running Docker Container on Kubernetes

  • Before launching container based on Docker image need to create pod definition
  • Pod: describes an application running on Kubernetes
  • Service: contain one or more tightly coupled containers (that make up the app - easily communicate with local port numbers)

Setup Application on Kubernetes

  • kubectl create -f k8s/demopod-helloworld.yml
  • kubectl describe pod nodehelloworld.example.com
  • kubectl port-forward nodehelloworld.example.com 8081:3000
  • kubectl expose pod nodehelloworld.example.com --type=NodePort --name=helloworld-service
  • minikube service helloworld-service --url returns url of the service running = kubectl get service

Useful Kubectl Commands (tie in with above example)

  • kubectl attach helloworld.example.com
  • kubectl exec helloworld.example.com -- ls /app lists file running inside container
  • kubectl exec helloworld.example.com -- touch /app/test.txt creates file inside container (will disappear if the container is killed - non-persistent data)
  • kubectl describe service helloworld-service
  • kubectl run -i -tty busybox --image=busybox --restart=Never -- sh

Kops Cluster Deployment


setup awscli

sudo apt-get install python-pip
sudo pip install awscli
aws configure (use IAM role details - with admin policy)
ls -ahl ~/.aws/ (verify credentials)

setup kubectl

wget https://storage.googleapis.com/kubernetes-release/release/v1.6.1/bin/linux/amd64/kubectl
sudo mv kubectl /usr/local/bin/
sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/kubectl

setup keygen

ssh-keygen -f .ssh/id_rsa
cat .ssh/id_rsa.pub

rename kops installation sudo mv /usr/local/bin/kops-linux-amd64 /usr/local/bin/kops

generate cluster with your s3 bucket with route53 dns zone kops create cluster --name=kubernetes.yourowndomain.com --state=s3://kops-state-randomhash --zones=eu-west-1a --node-count=2 --node-size=t2.micro --master-size=t2.micro --dns-zone=kubernetes.yourowndomain.com

kops update cluster kubernetes.yourowndomain.com --yes --state=s3://kops-state-randomhash

check your cert and password to log into new cluster cat .kube/config

check nodes are running kubectl get node

test own program on nodes

kubectl run hello-minikube --image=gcr.io/google_containers/echoserver:1.4 --port=8080
kubectl expose deployment hello-minikube --type=NodePort
kubectl get service

at this point add custom rule to aws- using VPC dashbaord - select master node - modify inbound traffic - all allowed on the port of your app in this case: 31956 Test it out: http://api.kubernetes.yourowndomain.com:31956/

to delete and avoid payments kops delete cluster --name kubernetes.yourowndomain.com --state=s3://kops-state-randomhash

to agree to delete kops delete cluster --name kubernetes.yourowndomain.com --state=s3://kops-state-randomhash --yes

Horizontal -v- Vertical Scaling

You can only horizontally scale when your pod is stateless. (i.e. kubectl scale options). Stateful pods cannot be horizontally scaled.

Useful Pod Commands

  • kubectl get pod Get info about all running pods
  • kubectl describe pod <pod> Describe one pod
  • kubectl expose pod <pod> --port=444 --name=frontend Expose port of a pod (creates new service)
  • kubectl port-forward <pod> 8080 Port forward teh exposed pod port to your local machine
  • kubectl attach <podname> -i Attach to the pod
  • kubectl exec <pod> --command Execute a command on the pod
  • kubectl label pods <pod> mylabel=awesome Add a new label to a pod
  • kubectl run -i --tty busybox --image=busybox --restart=Never -- sh Run a shell in a pod - very useful for debugging. Once in you can run telnet 3000 to hit service and then command GET /
  • kubectl scale --replicas=4 -f file.yaml Scales the number of pods replicated
  • kubectl get rc Gets replica controllers
  • kubectl scale --replicas=4 -f rc/helloworld-controller Scales the number of pods replicated
  • kubectl delete rc/helloworld-controller Deletes controller

Useful Deployment Commands

  • kubectl get deployments
  • kubectl get rs
  • kubectl get pods --show-labels
  • kubectl rollout status deployment/helloworld-deployment
  • kubectl set image deployment/helloworld-deployment k8s-demo=k8s-demo:2 can be used to update app to latest version
  • kubectl edit deployment/helloworld-deployment
  • kubectl rollout history deployment/helloworld-deployment
  • kubectl rollout undo deployment/helloworld-deployment --to-revision=n

Useful Service Commands

  • ClusterIP - virtual IP address only reachable from within the Cluster (default)
  • NodePort - same on each node also reachable externally
  • LoadBalancer - routes external traffic to every node on the NodePort (ELB on AWS)
  • ExternalName can provide a DNS name for service (e.g. service discovery using DNS) - only works when DNS add-on is enabled
  • By default service can only run between ports 30000-32767 but can be changed by adding –service-node-port-range= argument to kube-apiserver

  • minikube service service-name --url

  • kubectl describe svc helloworld-service
  • kubectl get svc svc short for service


  • key/value pairs attached to objects
  • labels are not unique, multiple can be added to one objects
  • Label selectors - you can use matching expressions to match labels
  • kubectl get nodes --show-labels

Node labels

  • You can also use labels to tag nodes - once tagged you can use label selectors to let pods only run on specific nodes
  • 2 steps to run a pod on a specific set of nodes:
  • First you tag the node
  • Then you add a nodeSelector to your pod configuration

First step: add a label or multiple to your nodes:

kubectl label nodes node1 hardware=high-spec
kubectl label nodes node2 hardware=low=spec

Second step: add a pod that uses those labels:

apiVersion: v1
kind: pod
  name: nodehelloworld.example.com
    app: helloworld
  - name: k8s-demo
  image: daniel40392/k8s-demo
  - containerPort: 3000
  hardware: high-spec

Health Checks

To detect and resolve problems with you app, you can run health checks

2 types of healthchecks: * Running a command in the container periodically * Periodic checks on a URL (HTTP)

apiVersion: v1
kind: pod
  name: nodehelloworld.example.com
    app: helloworld
  - name: k8s-demo
  image: daniel40392/k8s-demo
  - containerPort: 3000
      path: /
      port: 3000
    initialDelaySeconds: 15
    timeoutSeconds: 30

You can describe pods to see the liveness in effect and success/failure counts

Readiness Probes

  • livenessProbes: indicates whether container is Running

  • readinessProbes: indicates whether container is ready to serve

  • make sure at startup the pod will onyl receive traffic when test succeeds
  • you can use them in conjunction

Pod State

  • Pod Status kubectl get pods [Pending/Succeeded/Failed/Unknown]
  • Pod Condition kubectl describe pod PODNAME [PodScheduled/Ready/Initialized/Unschedulable/ContainersReady]
  • Container State kubectl get pod <podname>[Running/Terminated/Waiting]


  • A way to distribute credentials, keys, passwords or data to pods

Use in the following ways:

  • Use secrets as env varaiables
  • Use secrets as a file in a pod
  • Uses volumes to be mounted in a container with files, can be used for dotenv files or your app can just read this file.
  • Use an external image to pull secrets from a private image registry

To generate secrets using files:

echo -n "root" > ./username.txt
echo -n "password" > ./password.txt
kubectl create secret generic db-user-pass --from-file=./username.txt --from-file=./password.txt

Can also be an SSH key or SSL cert:

kubectl create secret generic ssl-certificate --from-file=ssh-privatekey=~/.sshid_rsa --ssl-cert=mysslcert.crt

To generate secrets using yaml

apiVersion: v1
kind: Secret
  name: db-secret
type: Opaque
  password: blergh # base64 encoded
  username: blergh2 # base64 encoded
echo -n "blergh" | base64

Using Secrets

Create a pod that exposes secrets as env variables:

apiVersion: v1
kind: pod
  name: nodehelloworld.example.com
    app: helloworld
  - name: k8s-demo
  image: daniel40392/k8s-demo
  - containerPort: 3000
        name: db-secret
        key: username

Alternatively you can provide the secrets in a file:

apiVersion: v1
kind: pod
  name: nodehelloworld.example.com
    app: helloworld
  - name: k8s-demo
  image: daniel40392/k8s-demo
  - containerPort: 3000
  - name: credvolume
    mountPath: /etc/creds
    readOnly: true
  - name: credvolume
    secretName: db-secrets

Web UI

Start dashboard

Create dashboard:

kubectl apply -f https://raw.githubusercontent.com/kubernetes/dashboard/master/src/deploy/recommended/kubernetes-dashboard.yaml

Create user

Create sample user (if using RBAC - on by default on new installs with kops / kubeadm):

kubectl create -f sample-user.yaml

Get login token:

kubectl -n kube-system get secret | grep admin-user
kubectl -n kube-system describe secret admin-user-token-<id displayed by previous command>

Login to dashboard

Go to http://api.yourdomain.com:8001/api/v1/namespaces/kube-system/services/https:kubernetes-dashboard:/proxy/#!/login

Login: admin Password: the password that is listed in ~/.kube/config (open file in editor and look for “password: …”

Choose for login token and enter the login token from the previous ste