Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) is a fully managed container orchestration service provided by Microsoft Azure. It is a popular choice for deploying and managing containerized applications in the cloud. In this article, we will walk you through the steps to get started with AKS.
Step 1: Set up your Azure environment
Before you start working with AKS, you need to set up your Azure environment. This involves creating an Azure account, setting up your subscription, and creating a resource group to host your AKS cluster. You can use the Azure portal or the Azure command-line interface (CLI) to perform these tasks.
To set up your Azure environment, follow these steps:
- Sign in to the Azure portal.
- Create an Azure account if you don’t have one already.
- Set up your subscription.
- Create a resource group to host your AKS cluster. A resource group is a logical container for resources deployed in Azure. You can create a new resource group or use an existing one.
Step 2: Create an AKS cluster
Once you have set up your Azure environment, you can create an AKS cluster. This involves specifying the cluster name, the number of nodes, the size of the nodes, and other parameters. You can use the Azure portal, the Azure CLI, or the Azure PowerShell module to create an AKS cluster.
To create an AKS cluster, follow these steps:
- In the Azure portal, click on “Create a resource” and search for “Kubernetes Service”.
- Click on “Create”.
- Enter a unique name for your cluster.
- Choose the subscription and resource group where you want to create the cluster.
- Select the Kubernetes version you want to use.
- Choose the number of nodes and the size of the nodes for your cluster. You can also enable auto-scaling if you want your cluster to automatically scale based on demand.
- Choose the authentication method for your cluster. You can use Azure Active Directory (AD) or a service principal.
- Choose the networking configuration for your cluster. You can use Azure CNI (Container Networking Interface) or Kubenet.
- Review and create the cluster.
Step 3: Connect to the AKS cluster
After creating the AKS cluster, you need to connect to it to manage your applications. You can use
kubectl, the Kubernetes command-line interface, to connect to your AKS cluster. You can also use the Kubernetes Dashboard, which is a web-based user interface for managing Kubernetes clusters.
To connect to the AKS cluster, follow these steps:
- In the Azure portal, go to your AKS cluster and click on “Connect”.
- Copy the command provided to connect to your cluster using
- Open a terminal window and paste the command to connect to your cluster.
- Verify that you can access your cluster by running
kubectl get nodes.
Step 4: Deploy your first application
Once you have connected to your AKS cluster, you can deploy your first application. This involves creating a Docker container for your application and deploying it to the AKS cluster using
kubectl. You can use sample applications provided by Kubernetes or deploy your own application.
To deploy your first application, follow these steps:
- Create a Docker container for your application and push it to a container registry such as Azure Container Registry (ACR).
- Create a Kubernetes deployment manifest file that defines your application’s deployment and service.
- Apply the deployment manifest file to your AKS cluster using
kubectl apply -f [filename].
- Verify that your application is running by running
kubectl get podsand
kubectl get services.
Step 5: Scale your application
To scale your application, you can use ReplicaSets or Horizontal Pod Autoscaling (HPA), as discussed in the previous article on Kubernetes. AKS also provides the option to scale your cluster nodes automatically using Virtual Node, which allows you to run containerized workloads in Azure Container Instances (ACI).
To scale your application, follow these steps:
- Use a ReplicaSet to create multiple replicas of your application. A ReplicaSet ensures that a specified number of replicas of your application are running at all times.
- Use Horizontal Pod Autoscaling (HPA) to automatically scale the number of replicas based on CPU utilization or other metrics.
- Use Virtual Node to automatically scale your cluster nodes using Azure Container Instances (ACI).
Step 6: Monitor your application
To ensure that your application is running smoothly, you need to monitor it. AKS provides various tools and metrics for monitoring your application, including Azure Monitor, Azure Log Analytics, and Azure Application Insights. You can also use third-party monitoring tools such as Datadog or New Relic.
To monitor your application, follow these steps:
- Use Azure Monitor to monitor your AKS cluster and the nodes in your cluster.
- Use Azure Log Analytics to collect and analyze log data from your application and your AKS cluster.
- Use Azure Application Insights to monitor your application’s performance and availability.
- Use third-party monitoring tools such as Datadog or New Relic.
Step 7: Secure your application
AKS provides several features for securing your application, including RBAC, network policies, and Azure Security Center. You can also use Azure Key Vault to store sensitive information such as passwords and API keys.
To secure your application, follow these steps:
- Use Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) to control access to your AKS cluster and its resources.
- Use network policies to control traffic to and from your AKS cluster.
- Use Azure Security Center to monitor and protect your AKS cluster against threats.
- Use Azure Key Vault to store sensitive information such as passwords and API keys.
AKS is a powerful and easy-to-use service for deploying and managing containerized applications in Azure. By following these steps, you can get started with AKS and start reaping the benefits of this exciting technology. With AKS, you can easily deploy, scale, and manage your applications, while also benefiting from the security, monitoring, and other features provided by Azure.