How do I provide external access to multiple Kubernetes services in my Amazon EKS cluster?

Last updated: 2022-09-09

I want to provide external access to multiple Kubernetes services in my Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) cluster.

Short description

Use the NGINX ingress controller or AWS Load Balancer Controller for Kubernetes to provide external access to multiple Kubernetes services in your Amazon EKS cluster. The NGINX ingress controller is maintained primarily by NGINX. To check for issues with the NGINX ingress controller, see the list of issues on the GitHub website. The AWS Load Balancer Controller is maintained by Amazon Web Services (AWS). To check for issues with AWS Load Balancer Controller, see the list of issues on the GitHub website.

Important: The ingress controller and IngressClass (from the Kubernetes website) aren't the same as the Ingress (from the Kubernetes website). The Ingress is a Kubernetes resource that exposes HTTP and HTTPS routes from outside the cluster to the services within the cluster. The ingress controller usually fulfills the Ingress with a load balancer. You can't use Ingress without an ingress controller. The IngressClass is used to identify which ingress controller to use for fulfilling the Ingress object request.

Prerequisite: Install the AWS Load Balancer Controller. It's a best practice to use the AWS Load Balancer Controller to create and manage a Network Load Balancer for the LoadBalancer type service objects in Amazon EKS.

Resolution

The following resolution uses the kubernetes/ingress-nginx ingress controller on the Kubernetes GitHub website. The other ingress controller that's available for public use is the nginxinc/kubernetes-ingress on the NGINX GitHub website.

Deploy the NGINX ingress controller for Kubernetes

You can deploy the NGINX ingress controller for Kubernetes by either transmission control protocol (TCP) or transport layer security (TLS).

Note: The following resolution is tested on Amazon EKS version 1.22, NGINX ingress controller version 1.3.0, and AWS Load Balancer Controller version 2.4.3.

(Option 1) NGINX ingress controller with TCP on Network Load Balancer

1.    Get the YAML file to deploy the following Kubernetes objects: namespace, serviceaccounts, configmap, clusterroles, clusterrolebindings, roles, rolebindings, services, deployments, ingressclasses, and validatingwebhookconfigurations.

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/kubernetes/ingress-nginx/main/deploy/static/provider/aws/deploy.yaml

2.    Edit the file. Then, in the ingress-nginx-controller service object section replace all service.beta.kubernetes.io annotations with following:

service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-backend-protocol: tcp
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-cross-zone-load-balancing-enabled: "true"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-type: "external"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-nlb-target-type: "instance"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-scheme: "internet-facing"

3.    Apply the manifest:

kubectl apply -f deploy.yaml

Example output:

namespace/ingress-nginx created 
serviceaccount/ingress-nginx created 
configmap/ingress-nginx-controller created 
clusterrole.rbac.authorization.k8s.io/ingress-nginx created 
clusterrolebinding.rbac.authorization.k8s.io/ingress-nginx created 
role.rbac.authorization.k8s.io/ingress-nginx created 
rolebinding.rbac.authorization.k8s.io/ingress-nginx created 
service/ingress-nginx-controller-admission created 
service/ingress-nginx-controller created 
deployment.apps/ingress-nginx-controller created 
ingressclass.networking.k8s.io/nginx created
validatingwebhookconfiguration.admissionregistration.k8s.io/ingress-nginx-admission created 
serviceaccount/ingress-nginx-admission created 
clusterrole.rbac.authorization.k8s.io/ingress-nginx-admission created 
clusterrolebinding.rbac.authorization.k8s.io/ingress-nginx-admission created

(Option 2) NGINX ingress controller TLS termination on Network Load Balancer

By default, the previous solution terminates TLS in the NGINX ingress controller. You can also configure the NGINX Ingress service to terminate TLS at the Network Load Balancer.

1.    Download the deploy.yaml template:

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/kubernetes/ingress-nginx/main/deploy/static/provider/aws/nlb-with-tls-termination/deploy.yaml

2.    Edit the file. Then, in the ingress-nginx-controller service object section, replace all service.beta.kubernetes.io annotations with following:

service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-cross-zone-load-balancing-enabled: "true"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-ssl-cert: arn:aws:acm:us-west-2:XXXXXXXX:certificate/XXXXXX-XXXXXXX-XXXXXXX-XXXXXXXX
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-ssl-ports: "443"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-type: "external"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-nlb-target-type: "instance"
service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-scheme: "internet-facing"

Note: Make sure to include your ARN for service.beta.kubernetes.io/aws-load-balancer-ssl-cert.

3.    Edit the file, and change the Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (Amazon VPC) CIDR for the Kubernetes cluster:

proxy-real-ip-cidr: XXX.XXX.XXX/XX

4.    Apply the manifest:

kubectl apply -f deploy.yaml

Note: The previous manifest uses ExternalTrafficPolicy as local to preserve the source (client) IP address. Using this configuration with a custom DHCP name in the Amazon VPC causes an issue. To prevent the issue from occurring, apply the following patch to the kube-proxy:

kubectl edit daemonset kube-proxy -n kube-system

5.    Edit the manifest to include the following snippet:

spec:
  template:
    spec:
      containers:
        - name: kube-proxy
          command:
            - kube-proxy
            - --hostname-override=$(NODE_NAME)
            - --v=2
            - --config=/var/lib/kube-proxy-config/config
           env:
            - name: NODE_NAME
              valueFrom:
                fieldRef:
                  apiVersion: v1
                  fieldPath: spec.nodeName

Verify the deployed resources

AWS Load Balancer controller

Command:

kubectl get all -n kube-system --selector app.kubernetes.io/instance=aws-load-balancer-controller

Example output:

NAME                                                READY   STATUS    RESTARTS   AGE   IP               NODE                                           NOMINATED NODE   READINESS GATES
pod/aws-load-balancer-controller-85cd8965dc-ctkjt   1/1     Running   0          48m   192.168.37.36    ip-192-168-59-225.us-east-2.compute.internal   none             none 
pod/aws-load-balancer-controller-85cd8965dc-wpwx9   1/1     Running   0          48m   192.168.53.110   ip-192-168-59-225.us-east-2.compute.internal   none>         none 
NAME                                        TYPE        CLUSTER-IP      EXTERNAL-IP   PORT(S)   AGE   SELECTOR 
service/aws-load-balancer-webhook-service   ClusterIP   10.100.154.44   none          443/TCP   19h   app.kubernetes.io/instance=aws-load-balancer-controller,app.kubernetes.io/name=aws-load-balancer-controller 
NAME                                           READY   UP-TO-DATE   AVAILABLE   AGE   CONTAINERS                   IMAGES                                                                                    SELECTOR 
deployment.apps/aws-load-balancer-controller   2/2     2            2           19h   aws-load-balancer-controller 602401143452.dkr.ecr.us-west-2.amazonaws.com/amazon/aws-load-balancer-controller:v2.4.0   app.kubernetes.io/instance=aws-load-balancer-controller,app.kubernetes.io/name=aws-load-balancer-controller 
NAME                                                      DESIRED   CURRENT   READY   AGE   CONTAINERS                     IMAGES                                                                                    SELECTOR 
replicaset.apps/aws-load-balancer-controller-85cd8965dc   2         2         2       19h   aws-load-balancer-controller   602401143452.dkr.ecr.us-west-2.amazonaws.com/amazon/aws-load-balancer-controller:v2.4.0   app.kubernetes.io/instance=aws-load-balancer-controller,app.kubernetes.io/name=aws-load-balancer-controller,pod-template-hash=85cd8965dc

NGINX ingress controller

Command:

kubectl get all -n ingress-nginx --selector app.kubernetes.io/instance=ingress-nginx

Example output:

NAME                                           READY  STATUS   RESTARTS  AGE   IP               NODE                                           NOMINATED NODE  READINESS GATES
pod/ingress-nginx-controller-54d8b558d4-k4pdf  1/1    Running  0         56m   192.168.46.241   ip-192-168-59-225.us-east-2.compute.internal   none            none
NAME                                        TYPE           CLUSTER-IP      EXTERNAL-IP                                                                     PORT(S)                      AGE   SELECTOR
service/ingress-nginx-controller            LoadBalancer   10.100.99.129   ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com   80:32578/TCP,443:30724/TCP   15h   app.kubernetes.io/component=controller,app.kubernetes.io/instance=ingress-nginx,app.kubernetes.io/name=ingress-nginx
service/ingress-nginx-controller-admission  ClusterIP      10.100.190.61   none                                                                            443/TCP                      15h   app.kubernetes.io/component=controller,app.kubernetes.io/instance=ingress-nginx,app.kubernetes.io/name=ingress-nginx
NAME                                       READY   UP-TO-DATE   AVAILABLE    AGE   CONTAINERS   IMAGES                                                                                                               SELECTOR
deployment.apps/ingress-nginx-controller   1/1     1            1            15h   controller   k8s.gcr.io/ingress-nginx/controller:v1.1.1@sha256:0bc88eb15f9e7f84e8e56c14fa5735aaa488b840983f87bd79b1054190e660de   app.kubernetes.io/component=controller,app.kubernetes.io/instance=ingress-nginx,app.kubernetes.io/name=ingress-nginx
NAME                                                  DESIRED   CURRENT   READY   AGE   CONTAINERS   IMAGES                                                                                                               SELECTOR
replicaset.apps/ingress-nginx-controller-54d8b558d4   1         1         1       15h   controller   k8s.gcr.io/ingress-nginx/controller:v1.1.1@sha256:0bc88eb15f9e7f84e8e56c14fa5735aaa488b840983f87bd79b1054190e660de   app.kubernetes.io/component=controller,app.kubernetes.io/instance=ingress-nginx,app.kubernetes.io/name=ingress-nginx,pod-template-hash=54d8b558d4
NAME                                       COMPLETIONS   DURATION   AGE   CONTAINERS   IMAGES                                                                                                                         SELECTOR
job.batch/ingress-nginx-admission-create   1/1           2s         15h   create       k8s.gcr.io/ingress-nginx/kube-webhook-certgen:v1.1.1@sha256:64d8c73dca984af206adf9d6d7e46aa550362b1d7a01f3a0a91b20cc67868660   controller-uid=242bdf56-de16-471d-a691-1ca1dbc10a41
job.batch/ingress-nginx-admission-patch    1/1           2s         15h   patch        k8s.gcr.io/ingress-nginx/kube-webhook-certgen:v1.1.1@sha256:64d8c73dca984af206adf9d6d7e46aa550362b1d7a01f3a0a91b20cc67868660   controller-uid=a9e710d2-5001-4d40-a435-ddc8993bfe42

IngressClass

Command:

kubectl get ingressclass

Example output:

NAME    CONTROLLER             PARAMETERS                             AGE 
alb     ingress.k8s.aws/alb    IngressClassParams.elbv2.k8s.aws/alb   19h 
nginx   k8s.io/ingress-nginx   none                                   15h

Test the deployment setup

Note: The following step is running two microservices. The microservices are exposed internally with Kubernetes as the default type.

1.    Set up your deployments or microservices. For example, hostname-app and apache-app.

Example of a hostname-app-svc.yaml file for hostname-app:

apiVersion: apps/v1 
kind: Deployment 
metadata:
  name: hostname-app
  namespace: default 
spec:
  replicas: 2
  selector:
    matchLabels:
      app: hostname-app
  template:
    metadata:
      labels:
        app: hostname-app
    spec:
      containers:
      - name: hostname-app
        image: k8s.gcr.io/serve_hostname:1.1 

--- 
apiVersion: v1 
kind: Service 
metadata:
  name: hostname-svc
  namespace: default 
spec:
  ports:
  - port: 80
    targetPort: 9376
    protocol: TCP
  selector:
    app: hostname-app

Example of an apache-app-svc.yaml file for apache-app:

apiVersion: apps/v1 
kind: Deployment 
metadata:
  name: apache-app
  namespace: default 
spec:
  replicas: 2
  selector:
    matchLabels:
      app: apache-app
  template:
    metadata:
      labels:
        app: apache-app
    spec:
      containers:
      - name: apache-app
        image: httpd:latest
        ports:
        - containerPort: 80 

--- 
apiVersion: v1 
kind: Service 
metadata:
  name: apache-svc
  namespace: default
  labels: 
spec:
  ports:
  - port: 80
    targetPort: 80
    protocol: TCP
  selector:
    app: apache-app

2.    Apply your configurations.

hostname-app:

kubectl apply -f hostname-app-svc.yaml

apache-app:

kubectl apply -f apache-app-svc.yaml

3.    Verify that the resources are created.

Deployments

Command:

kubectl get deployment hostname-app apache-app -n default

Example output:

NAME           READY   UP-TO-DATE   AVAILABLE   AGE 
hostname-app   2/2     2            2           29m
apache-app     2/2     2            2           29m

Services

Command:

kubectl get svc apache-svc hostname-svc -n default

Example output:

NAME           TYPE        CLUSTER-IP      EXTERNAL-IP   PORT(S)   AGE 
apache-svc     ClusterIP   10.100.73.51    none          80/TCP    29m 
hostname-svc   ClusterIP   10.100.100.44   none          80/TCP    29m

Test the NGINX ingress controller

1.    Access the DNS URL of the load balancer that you retrieved from the command line:

curl -I ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com

Example output:

HTTP/1.1 404 Not Found 
Date: Thu, 03 Mar 2022 14:03:11 GMT 
Content-Type: text/html 
Content-Length: 146 
Connection: keep-alive

Note: The default server returns a 404 Not Found page for all domain requests that don't have defined ingress rules. Based on the defined rules, the ingress controller doesn't divert traffic to the specified backend service unless the request matches the configuration. Because the host field is configured for the Ingress object, you must supply the Host header of the request with the same hostname. In a testing environment, use a curl flag to provide the Host header. In a production environment, map the load balancer DNS name to the hostname on any DNS provider, such as Amazon Route 53.

2.    Implement the ingress so that it interfaces with your services using a single load balancer provided by the NGINX ingress controller.

Example micro-ingress.yaml:

apiVersion: networking.k8s.io/v1 
kind: Ingress 
metadata:
  name: micro-ingress
  namespace: default
  annotations: 
    kubernetes.io/ingress.class: nginx 
spec:
  rules:
    - host: hostname.mydomain.com
      http:
        paths:
        - backend:
            service:
              name: hostname-svc
              port:
                number: 80
          path: /
          pathType: Prefix
  - host: apache.mydomain.com
    http:
      paths:
      - backend:
          service:
            name: apache-svc
            port:
              number: 80
        path: /
        pathType: Prefix

Note: For more information, see Name based virtual hosting (from the Kubernetes website).

3.    Verify that the resource is created.

Ingress

Command:

kubectl get ingress -n default

Example output:

NAME           CLASS   HOSTS                                       ADDRESS                                                                         PORTS   AGE 
micro-ingress  none    hostname.mydomain.com,apache.mydomain.com   ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com   80      29m

4.    Add the Host header to the request.

First configured domain:

curl -i -H "Host: hostname.mydomain.com" http://aaa71bxxxxx-11xxxxx10.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com/

Example output:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK Date: Sat, 26 Mar 2022 18:50:38 GMT Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8 Content-Length: 29 Connection: keep-alive

Second configured domain:

curl -i -H "Host: apache.mydomain.com" http://aaa71bxxxxx-11xxxxx10.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com/

Example output:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK 
Date: Sat, 26 Mar 2022 18:51:00 GMT 
Content-Type: text/html 
Content-Length: 45 
Connection: keep-alive 
Last-Modified: Mon, 11 Jun 2007 18:53:14 GMT 
ETag: "2d-432a5e4a73a80" 
Accept-Ranges: bytes

After adding the Host header, the ingress controller redirects traffic to the backend configured service as it matches the configuration that's defined in the Ingress.

To keep the same domain name but divert the traffic based on the path that's accessed, you must add path-based routing with the Ingress.

For example:

apiVersion: networking.k8s.io/v1 
kind: Ingress 
metadata:
  name: path-ingress
  namespace: default
  annotations:
    kubernetes.io/ingress.class: nginxd
    nginx.ingress.kubernetes.io/rewrite-target: / 
spec:
  rules:
  - host: mydomain.com
    http:
      paths:
      - backend:
          service:
            name: hostname-svc
            port:
              number: 80
        path: /hostname
        pathType: Prefix
  - host: mydomain.com
    http:
      paths:
      - backend:
          service:
            name: apache-svc
            port:
              number: 80
        path: /apache
        pathType: Prefix

Note: If requests have mydomain.com as the Host header, then the preceding example returns only the 200 response. The requests are accessed on either the /hostname or /apache paths. For all other requests, 404 responses are returned.

5.    Verify that the path-based routing is added:

Command:

kubectl get ingress -n default

Output:

NAME            CLASS  HOSTS                                       ADDRESS                                                                         PORTS  AGE
micro-ingress   none   hostname.mydomain.com,apache.mydomain.com   ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com   80     164m
path-ingress    none   mydomain.com,mydomain.com                   ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com   80     120m

Command:

curl -i -H "Host: mydomain.com" http://aaa71bxxxxx-11xxxxx10.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com/hostname

-or-

curl -i -H "Host: mydomain.com" http://aaa71bxxxxx-11xxxxx10.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com/apache

Test the ingress using the AWS Load Balancer controller

1.    Launch the Application Load Balancer using the following example Ingress manifest:

apiVersion: networking.k8s.io/v1 
kind: Ingress 
metadata:
  name: micro-ingress-alb
  namespace: default
  annotations:
    kubernetes.io/ingress.class: alb 
    alb.ingress.kubernetes.io/scheme: internet-facing
    alb.ingress.kubernetes.io/target-type: ip 
spec:
  rules:
  - host: alb.hostname.mydomain.com
    http:
      paths:
      - backend:
          service:
            name: hostname-svc
            port:
              number: 80
        path: /
        pathType: Prefix
   - host: alb.apache.mydomain.com
     http:
       - backend:
            service:
              name: apache-svc
              port:
                number: 80
         path: /
         pathType: Prefix

2.    Verify that the Application Load Balancer launches.

Command:

kubectl get ingress -n default

Output:

NAME               CLASS  HOSTS                                               ADDRESS                                                                         PORTS  AGE
micro-ingress      none   hostname.mydomain.com,apache.mydomain.com           ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com   80     164m
micro-ingress-alb  none   alb.hostname.mydomain.com,alb.apache.mydomain.com   k8s-default-microing-8a252bde81-1907206594.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com          80     18m
path-ingress       none   mydomain.com,mydomain.com                           ad9bba7a8239a475297d24bd2f617782-a579e639079f8270.elb.us-east-2.amazonaws.com   80     120m

Request based on first configured domain:

curl -i -H "Host: alb.hostname.mydomain.com" http://k8s-default-microing-8a252bde81-1907206594.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com

Example output:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK Date: Sat, 26 Mar 2022 20:46:02 GMT Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8 Content-Length: 29 Connection: keep-alive

Request based on second configured domain:

curl -i -H "Host: alb.apache.mydomain.com" http://k8s-default-microing-8a252bde81-1907206594.us-east-2.elb.amazonaws.com

Example output:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK 
Date: Sat, 26 Mar 2022 20:46:14 GMT 
Content-Type: text/html Content-Length: 45 
Connection: keep-alive 
Server: Apache/2.4.53 (Unix) 
Last-Modified: Mon, 11 Jun 2007 18:53:14 GMT 
ETag: "2d-432a5e4a73a80" 
Accept-Ranges: bytes

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