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Applies to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 SP3, Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government 1.20.14

5 Deployment

This section describes the process steps for the deployment of the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government solution. It describes the process steps to deploy each of the component layers starting as a base functional proof-of-concept, having considerations on migration toward production, providing scaling guidance that is needed to create the solution.

5.1 Deployment overview

The deployment stack is represented in the following figure:

rc RKE2 SLES HPE deployment
Figure 5.1: Deployment Stack - Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government

and details are covered for each layer in the following sections.

Note
Note

The following section’s content is ordered and described from the bottom layer up to the top.

5.2 Compute Platform

The base, starting configuration can reside all within a single Hewlett Packard Enterprise Synergy Frame. Based upon the relatively small resource requirements for a Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government deployment, a viable approach is to deploy as a virtual machine (VM) on the target nodes, on top of an existing hypervisor, like KVM. For a physical host, there are tools that can be used during the setup of the server, see below.

Preparation(s)

The HPE Integrated Lights Out [iLO] is designed for secure local and remote server management and helps IT administrators deploy, update and monitor HPE servers anywhere, anytime.

  1. Upgrade your basic iLO license for additional functionality, such as graphical remote console and virtual media access to allow the remote usage of software image files (ISO files), which can be used for installing operating systems or updating servers.

    • (Optional) - iLO Federation enables you to manage multiple servers from one system using the iLO web interface.

  2. For nodes situated in an HPE Synergy enclosure, like HPE Synergy SY480 used in the deployment:

    • Setup the necessary items in the Hewlett Packard Enterprise OneView interface, including:

      • Settings → Addresses and Identifiers (Subnets and Address Ranges)

      • Networks → Create (associate subnets and designate bandwidths)

      • Network Sets → Create (aggregate all the necessary Networks)

      • Logical Interconnects → Edit (include the respective Network Sets)

      • Logical Interconnect Groups → Edit (include the respective Network Sets)

      • Server Profile Templates → Create (or use existing hypervisor templates)

      • OS Deployment mode → could be configured to boot from PXE, local storage, shared storage

      • Firmware (upgrade to the latest and strive for consistency across node types)

      • Manage Connections (assign the Network Set to be bonded across NICs)

      • Local Storage (create the internal RAID1 set and request additional drives for the respective roles)

      • Manage Boot/BIOS/iLO Settings

      • Server Profile → Create (assign the role template to the target model)

    • Add Servers and Assign Server Roles

      • Use the Discover function from Hewlett Packard Enterprise OneView to see all of the available nodes that can be assigned to to their respective roles:

      • Then drag and drop the nodes into the roles and ensure there is no missing configuration information, by reviewing and editing each node’s server details

      • Manage Settings - setup DNS/NTP, designate Disk Models/NIC Mappings/Interface Model/Networks

      • Manage Subnet and Netmask - edit Management Network information, ensuring a match exists to those setup in Hewlett Packard Enterprise OneView

Deployment Process

On the respective compute module node, determine if a hypervisor is already available for the solution’s virtual machines.

  1. If this will be the first use of this node, an option is to deploy a KVM hypervisor, based upon SUSE Linux Enterprise Server by following the Virtualization Guide.

    • Given the simplicity of the deployment, the operating system and hypervisor can be installed with the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server ISO media and the Hewlett Packard Enterprise Integrated Lights Out virtual media and virtual console methodology.

  2. Then for the solution VM, use the hypervisor user interface to allocate the necessary CPU, memory, disk and networking as noted in the link:SUSE Rancher hardware requirements.

Deployment Consideration(s)

To further optimize deployment factors, leverage the following practices:

  • Automation

    • For HPE Synergy servers, you can simplify multiple compute module setups and configurations, leveraging the Hewlett Packard Enterprise OneView SDK for Terraform Provider.

    • For nodes running KVM, you can leverage either virt-install or Terraform Libvirt Provider to quickly and efficiently automate the deployment of multiple virtual machines.

  • Availability

    • While the initial deployment only requires a single VM, as noted in later deployment sections, having multiple VMs provides resiliency to accomplish high availability. To reduce single points of failure, it would be beneficial to have the multi-VM deployments spread across multiple hypervisor nodes. So consideration of consistent hypervisor and compute module configurations, with the needed resources for the VMs will yield a robust, reliable production implementation.

5.3 SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

As the base software layer, use an enterprise-grade Linux operating system. For example, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.

Preparation(s)

To meet the solution stack prerequisites and requirements, SUSE operating system offerings, like SUSE Linux Enterprise Server can be used.

  1. Ensure these services are in place and configured for this node to use:

    • Domain Name Service (DNS) - an external network-accessible service to map IP Addresses to host names

    • Network Time Protocol (NTP) - an external network-accessible service to obtain and synchronize system times to aid in time stamp consistency

    • Software Update Service - access to a network-based repository for software update packages. This can be accessed directly from each node via registration to

      • the general, internet-based SUSE Customer Center (SCC) or

      • an organization’s SUSE Manager infrastructure or

      • a local server running an instance of Repository Mirroring Tool (RMT)

        Note
        Note

        During the node’s installation, it can be pointed to the respective update service. This can also be accomplished post-installation with the command line tool named SUSEConnect.

Deployment Process

On the compute platform node, install the noted SUSE operating system, by following these steps:

  1. Download the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server product (either for the ISO or Virtual Machine image)

    • Identify the appropriate, supported version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server by reviewing the support matrix for SUSE Rancher versions Web page.

  2. The installation process is described and can be performed with default values by following steps from the product documentation, see Installation Quick Start

    Tip
    Tip

    Adjust both the password and the local network addressing setup to comply with local environment guidelines and requirements.

Deployment Consideration(s)

To further optimize deployment factors, leverage the following practices:

  • Automation

    • To reduce user intervention, unattended deployments of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server can be automated

5.4 Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government

Preparation(s)
  1. Identify the appropriate, desired version of the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government (for example vX.YY.ZZ+rke2rV) by reviewing

    • the "Supported Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government Versions" associated with the respective SUSE Rancher version from "Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government Downstream Clusters" section, or

    • the "Releases" on the Download Web page.

  2. For Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government versions 1.21 and higher, if the host kernel supports AppArmor, the AppArmor tools (usually available via the "apparmor-parser" package) must also be present prior to installing Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government.

    • On the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server node, install this required package

      zypper install apparmor-parser
  3. For the underlying operating system firewall service, either

    • enable and configure the necessary inbound ports or

    • stop and completely disable the firewall service.

Deployment Process

Perform the following steps to install the first Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government server on one of the nodes to be used for the Kubernetes control plane

  1. Set the following variable with the noted version of Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government, as found during the preparation steps.

    RKE2_VERSION=""
  2. Install the appropriate version of Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government:

    • Download the installer script:

      curl -sfL https://get.rke2.io | \
      	INSTALL_RKE2_VERSION=${RKE2_VERSION} sh -
    • Set the following variable with the URL that will be used to access the SUSE Rancher server. This may be based on one or more DNS entries, a reverse-proxy server, or a load balancer:

      RKE2_subjectAltName=
    • Create the RKE2 config.yaml file:

      mkdir -p /etc/rancher/rke2/
      cat <<EOF> /etc/rancher/rke2/config.yaml
      write-kubeconfig-mode: "0644"
      tls-san:
        - "${RKE2_subjectAltName}"
      EOF
  3. Start and enable the RKE2 service, which will begin installing the required Kubernetes components:

    systemctl enable --now rke2-server.service
    • Include the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government binary directories in this user’s path:

      echo "PATH=${PATH}:/opt/rke2/bin:/var/lib/rancher/rke2/bin/" >> ~/.bashrc
      source  ~/.bashrc
    • Monitor the progress of the installation:

      export KUBECONFIG=/etc/rancher/rke2/rke2.yaml
      watch -c "kubectl get deployments -A"
      Note
      Note

      For the first two to three minutes of the installation, the initial output will include the error phrase "The connection to the server 127.0.0.1:6443 was refused - did you specify the right host or port?". As Kubernetes services get started this will be replace with "No resources found". About four minutes after beginning the installation, the output will begin showing the deployments being created, and after six to seven minutes the installation should be complete.

      • The Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government deployment is complete when elements of all the deployments (coredns, ingress, and metrics-server) show at least "1" as "AVAILABLE"

        • Use Ctrl+c to exit the watch loop after all deployment pods are running

Deployment Consideration(s)

To further optimize deployment factors, leverage the following practices:

  • Availability

    • A full high-availability Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government cluster is recommended for production workloads. The etcd key/value store (aka database) requires an odd number of servers (aka master nodes) be allocated to the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government cluster. In this case, two additional control-plane servers should be added; for a total of three.

      1. Deploy the same operating system on the new compute platform nodes

      2. Log in to the first server node and create a new config.yaml file for the remaining two server nodes:

        • Set the following variables, as appropriate for this cluster

          # Private IP preferred, if available
          FIRST_SERVER_IP=""
          
          # Private IP preferred, if available
          SECOND_SERVER_IP=""
          
          # Private IP preferred, if available
          THIRD_SERVER_IP=""
          
          # From the /var/lib/rancher/rke2/server/node-token file on the first server
          NODE_TOKEN=""
          
          # Match the first of the first server (Hint: `kubectl get nodes`)
          RKE2_VERSION=""
        • Create the new config.yaml file:

          echo "server: https://${FIRST_SERVER_IP}:9345" > config.yaml
          echo "token: ${NODE_TOKEN}" >> config.yaml
          cat /etc/rancher/rke2/config.yaml >> config.yaml
          Tip
          Tip

          The next steps require using SCP and SSH. Setting up passwordless SSH, and/or using ssh-agent, from the first server node to the second and third nodes will make these steps quicker and easier.

        • Copy the new config.yaml file to the remaining two server nodes:

          scp config.yaml ${SECOND_SERVER_IP}:~/
          scp config.yaml ${THIRD_SERVER_IP}:~/
        • Move the config.yaml file to the correct location in the file system:

          ssh ${SECOND_SERVER_IP} << EOF
          mkdir -p /etc/rancher/rke2/
          cp ~/config.yaml /etc/rancher/rke2/config.yaml
          cat /etc/rancher/rke2/config.yaml
          EOF
          
          ssh ${THIRD_SERVER_IP} << EOF
          mkdir -p /etc/rancher/rke2/
          cp ~/config.yaml /etc/rancher/rke2/config.yaml
          cat /etc/rancher/rke2/config.yaml
          EOF
        • Execute the following sets of commands on each of the remaining control-plane nodes:

          • Install Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government

            ssh ${SECOND_SERVER_IP} << EOF
            curl -sfL https://get.rke2.io | \
            	INSTALL_RKE2_VERSION=${RKE2_VERSION} sh -
            systemctl enable --now rke2-server.service
            EOF
            
            ssh ${THIRD_SERVER_IP} << EOF
            curl -sfL https://get.rke2.io | \
            	INSTALL_RKE2_VERSION=${RKE2_VERSION} sh -
            systemctl enable --now rke2-server.service
            EOF
        • Monitor the progress of the new server nodes joining the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government cluster: watch -c "kubectl get nodes"

          • It takes up to eight minutes for each node to join the cluster

          • A node has deployed correctly when its status is "Ready" and it holds the roles of "control-plane,etcd,master"

          • Use Ctrl+c to exit the watch loop after all deployment pods are running

            Note
            Note

            This can be changed to the normal Kubernetes default by adding a taint to each server node. See the official Kubernetes documentation for more information on how to do that.

      3. (Optional) In cases where agent nodes are desired, execute the following sets of commands, using the same, "RKE2_VERSION", "FIRST_SERVER_IP" and "NODE_TOKEN" variable settings as above, on each of the agent nodes to add it to the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government cluster:

        curl -sfL https://get.rke2.io | \
        	INSTALL_RKE2_VERSION=${RKE2_VERSION} \
        	RKE2_URL=https://${FIRST_SERVER_IP}:6443 \
        	RKE2_TOKEN=${NODE_TOKEN} \
        	RKE2_KUBECONFIG_MODE="644" \
        	sh -

After this successful deployment of the Rancher Kubernetes Engine Government solution, review the product documentation for details on how to directly use this Kubernetes cluster. Furthermore, by reviewing the SUSE Rancher product documentation this solution can also be:

  • imported (refer to sub-section "Importing Existing Clusters"), then

  • managed (refer to sub-section "Cluster Administration") and

  • accessed (refer to sub-section "Cluster Access") to address orchestration of workloads, maintaining security and many more functions are readily available.

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