Local Setup for Learning Kubernetes


There are multiple ways of setting up kubernetes. To play around or learn kubernetes you can set it up via multiple ways such as:

  • Minikube
  • MicroK8s
  • Kubeadm

The kubeadm tool can also be used for setting up a local viable cluster with the help of a config management tools such as Ansible. A detailed step by step tutorial for installing kuberetes with ansible on a local cluster can be found here.

However for running a prodcuction grade cluster in cloud it’s better to use a managed service from providers such as GCP, AWS, Azure or DigitalOcean.

For a local development or learning setup minikube is the easiest to start with and we will go through steps to setup a local minikube cluster.

A typical kubernetes deployments consists of master and worker node with components shown in the image below.

Minikube bundles all these components together in a single node kubernetes cluser. This gives us a simple setup to work and interact with.

Installing Kubectl

To interact with a kubernetes cluster we need a utility kubectl. The kubectl utility can interact with both local as well as a remote setup with some configuration.

Inorder to install kubectl utility on linux

  1. Download the latest release with the command
curl -LO "https://dl.k8s.io/release/$(curl -L -s https://dl.k8s.io/release/stable.txt)/bin/linux/amd64/kubectl"
  1. Validate the binary Download checksum file
curl -LO "https://dl.k8s.io/$(curl -L -s https://dl.k8s.io/release/stable.txt)/bin/linux/amd64/kubectl.sha256"

Validate the binary

echo "$(cat kubectl.sha256)  kubectl" | sha256sum --check
  1. Install kubectl
sudo install -o root -g root -m 0755 kubectl /usr/local/bin/kubectl

For more detail visit here

If you want to enable shell completion for kubectl then please see this link it explains how to add it for bash, fish and zsh.

Installing Minikube

To install minikube on linux follow the commands:

  1. Download the binary
curl -LO https://storage.googleapis.com/minikube/releases/latest/minikube-linux-amd64
  1. Install the binary
sudo install minikube-linux-amd64 /usr/local/bin/minikube
  1. Setup a local kubernetes cluster Minikube needs a driver to setup the cluster on the local machine. A list of drivers supported can be found here. I prefer the docker driver as it’s easier to setup and clean and is also a very common utility for dev and ops people. To start the cluster with docker driver, run the command:
minikube start --driver=docker

To make this the default driver we can run the following command

minikube config set driver docker

Once you are done with the setup you can start and stop the cluster with the help of minikube.

minikube start  #starts the cluster
minikube stop   #stops the cluster 

You can interact with the cluster using kubectl e.g.

kubectl get nodes
kubectl get nodes

This should return the output as such

NAME       STATUS   ROLES                  AGE   VERSION
minikube   Ready    control-plane,master   37h   v1.22.3


In the article we took a look at how to setup kubectl utility and minikube for local development on kubernetes.