Consul is a service networking solution that enables teams to manage secure network connectivity between services and across on-prem and multi-cloud environments and runtimes. Consul offers service discovery, service mesh, traffic management, and automated updates to network infrastructure devices. Check out the What is Consul? page to learn more.
In this tutorial, you will deploy a Consul datacenter onto a Kubernetes cluster. After deploying Consul, you will interact with Consul using the UI and CLI.
In the following tutorials, you will deploy a demo application, integrate it with Consul service mesh, allow external traffic into the service mesh, and enhance observability into your service mesh.
In this tutorial, you will:
- Deploy a HashiCorp Cloud Platform (HCP) Consul datacenter and an Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS) cluster with Terraform
- Configure your terminal to communicate with the Consul datacenter
- View Consul services with the CLI, UI, and/or API
Clone the GitHub repository containing the configuration files and resources.
$ git clone https://github.com/hashicorp-education/learn-consul-get-started-kubernetes.git
Change into the directory that contains the complete configuration files for this tutorial.
$ cd learn-consul-get-started-kubernetes/hcp-managed/eks
With these Terraform configuration files, you are ready to deploy your infrastructure.
terraform init command from your working directory to download the necessary providers and initialize the backend.
$ terraform init Initializing the backend... Initializing provider plugins... ... Terraform has been successfully initialized! ...
Then, deploy the resources. Confirm the run by entering
$ terraform apply ## ... Do you want to perform these actions? Terraform will perform the actions described above. Only 'yes' will be accepted to approve. Enter a value: yes ## ... Apply complete! Resources: 69 added, 0 changed, 0 destroyed.
Note: The Terraform deployment could take up to 15 minutes to complete. Feel free to explore the next sections of this tutorial while waiting for the environment to complete initialization or learn more about the Raft protocol in a fun, interactive way.
Kubernetes stores cluster connection information in a file called
kubeconfig. You can retrieve the Kubernetes configuration settings for your EKS cluster and merge them into your local
kubeconfig file by issuing the following command:
$ aws eks --region $(terraform output -raw region) update-kubeconfig --name $(terraform output -raw kubernetes_cluster_id)
HCP Consul is a secure, fully-managed solution for Consul and can be used immediately after the Terraform deployment completes, with no additional deployment/configuration steps. HCP Consul provides you with all Consul Enterprise features by default. Feel free to go directly to Configure your CLI to interact with Consul datacenter.
In this section, you will set environment variables in your terminal so your Consul CLI can interact with your Consul datacenter. The Consul CLI reads these environment variables for behavior defaults and will reference these values when you run
Tokens are artifacts in the ACL system used to authenticate users, services, and Consul agents. Since ACLs are enabled in this Consul datacenter, entities requesting access to a resource must include a token that is linked with a policy, service identity, or node identity that grants permission to the resource. The ACL system checks the token and grants or denies access to resources based on the associated permissions. A bootstrap token has unrestricted privileges to all resources and APIs.
Set the Consul ACL token as an environment variable.
$ export CONSUL_HTTP_TOKEN=$(terraform output -raw consul_token)
Set the Consul destination address. By default, Consul runs on port
$ export CONSUL_HTTP_ADDR=$(terraform output -raw consul_addr)
In this section, you will view your Consul services with the CLI, UI, and/or API to explore the details of your service mesh.
In your terminal, run the CLI command
consul catalog services to return the list of services registered in Consul. Notice this returns only the
consul service since it is the only running service in your Consul datacenter.
$ consul catalog services consul
Agents run in either server or client mode. Server agents store all state information, including service and node IP addresses, health checks, and configuration. Client agents are lightweight processes that make up the majority of the datacenter. They report service health status to the server agents. Clients must run on every pod where services are running.
Run the CLI command
consul members to return the list of Consul agents in your environment.
$ consul members Node Address Status Type Build Protocol DC Partition Segment ip-172-25-32-114 172.25.32.114:8301 alive server 1.16.0+ent 2 learn-consul-gs default <all>
All services listed in your Consul catalog are empowered with Consul's service discovery capabilities that simplify scalability challenges and improve application resiliency. Review the Service Discovery overview page to learn more.
In this tutorial, you integrated Consul into your Kubernetes environment. After deploying Consul, you interacted with Consul using the CLI, UI, and API.
In the next tutorial, you will deploy HashiCups, a demo application, onto your Kubernetes cluster to explore how to use Consul service mesh for service-to-service traffic management.
For more information about the topics covered in this tutorial, refer to the following resources: