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In OpenShift Container Platform 4.10, you can install a cluster on bare metal infrastructure that you provision.

While you might be able to follow this procedure to deploy a cluster on virtualized or cloud environments, you must be aware of additional considerations for non-bare metal platforms. Review the information in the guidelines for deploying OpenShift Container Platform on non-tested platforms before you attempt to install an OpenShift Container Platform cluster in such an environment.

Prerequisites

Internet access for OpenShift Container Platform

In OpenShift Container Platform 4.10, you require access to the internet to install your cluster.

You must have internet access to:

  • Access OpenShift Cluster Manager to download the installation program and perform subscription management. If the cluster has internet access and you do not disable Telemetry, that service automatically entitles your cluster.

  • Access Quay.io to obtain the packages that are required to install your cluster.

  • Obtain the packages that are required to perform cluster updates.

If your cluster cannot have direct internet access, you can perform a restricted network installation on some types of infrastructure that you provision. During that process, you download the required content and use it to populate a mirror registry with the installation packages. With some installation types, the environment that you install your cluster in will not require internet access. Before you update the cluster, you update the content of the mirror registry.

Additional resources

Requirements for a cluster with user-provisioned infrastructure

For a cluster that contains user-provisioned infrastructure, you must deploy all of the required machines.

This section describes the requirements for deploying OpenShift Container Platform on user-provisioned infrastructure.

Required machines for cluster installation

The smallest OpenShift Container Platform clusters require the following hosts:

Table 1. Minimum required hosts
Hosts Description

One temporary bootstrap machine

The cluster requires the bootstrap machine to deploy the OpenShift Container Platform cluster on the three control plane machines. You can remove the bootstrap machine after you install the cluster.

Three control plane machines

The control plane machines run the Kubernetes and OpenShift Container Platform services that form the control plane.

At least two compute machines, which are also known as worker machines.

The workloads requested by OpenShift Container Platform users run on the compute machines.

As an exception, you can run zero compute machines in a bare metal cluster that consists of three control plane machines only. This provides smaller, more resource efficient clusters for cluster administrators and developers to use for testing, development, and production. Running one compute machine is not supported.

To maintain high availability of your cluster, use separate physical hosts for these cluster machines.

The bootstrap and control plane machines must use Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS) as the operating system. However, the compute machines can choose between Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS), Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8.4, or RHEL 8.5.

Note that RHCOS is based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8 and inherits all of its hardware certifications and requirements. See Red Hat Enterprise Linux technology capabilities and limits.

Minimum resource requirements for cluster installation

Each cluster machine must meet the following minimum requirements:

Table 2. Minimum resource requirements
Machine Operating System CPU [1] RAM Storage IOPS [2]

Bootstrap

RHCOS

4

16 GB

100 GB

300

Control plane

RHCOS

4

16 GB

100 GB

300

Compute

RHCOS, RHEL 8.4, or RHEL 8.5 [3]

2

8 GB

100 GB

300

  1. One CPU is equivalent to one physical core when simultaneous multithreading (SMT), or hyperthreading, is not enabled. When enabled, use the following formula to calculate the corresponding ratio: (threads per core × cores) × sockets = CPUs.

  2. OpenShift Container Platform and Kubernetes are sensitive to disk performance, and faster storage is recommended, particularly for etcd on the control plane nodes which require a 10 ms p99 fsync duration. Note that on many cloud platforms, storage size and IOPS scale together, so you might need to over-allocate storage volume to obtain sufficient performance.

  3. As with all user-provisioned installations, if you choose to use RHEL compute machines in your cluster, you take responsibility for all operating system life cycle management and maintenance, including performing system updates, applying patches, and completing all other required tasks. Use of RHEL 7 compute machines is deprecated and has been removed in OpenShift Container Platform 4.10 and later.

If an instance type for your platform meets the minimum requirements for cluster machines, it is supported to use in OpenShift Container Platform.

Certificate signing requests management

Because your cluster has limited access to automatic machine management when you use infrastructure that you provision, you must provide a mechanism for approving cluster certificate signing requests (CSRs) after installation. The kube-controller-manager only approves the kubelet client CSRs. The machine-approver cannot guarantee the validity of a serving certificate that is requested by using kubelet credentials because it cannot confirm that the correct machine issued the request. You must determine and implement a method of verifying the validity of the kubelet serving certificate requests and approving them.

Additional resources

Networking requirements for user-provisioned infrastructure

All the Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS) machines require networking to be configured in initramfs during boot to fetch their Ignition config files.

During the initial boot, the machines require an IP address configuration that is set either through a DHCP server or statically by providing the required boot options. After a network connection is established, the machines download their Ignition config files from an HTTP or HTTPS server. The Ignition config files are then used to set the exact state of each machine. The Machine Config Operator completes more changes to the machines, such as the application of new certificates or keys, after installation.

It is recommended to use a DHCP server for long-term management of the cluster machines. Ensure that the DHCP server is configured to provide persistent IP addresses, DNS server information, and hostnames to the cluster machines.

If a DHCP service is not available for your user-provisioned infrastructure, you can instead provide the IP networking configuration and the address of the DNS server to the nodes at RHCOS install time. These can be passed as boot arguments if you are installing from an ISO image. See the Installing RHCOS and starting the OpenShift Container Platform bootstrap process section for more information about static IP provisioning and advanced networking options.

The Kubernetes API server must be able to resolve the node names of the cluster machines. If the API servers and worker nodes are in different zones, you can configure a default DNS search zone to allow the API server to resolve the node names. Another supported approach is to always refer to hosts by their fully-qualified domain names in both the node objects and all DNS requests.

Setting the cluster node hostnames through DHCP

On Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS) machines, the hostname is set through NetworkManager. By default, the machines obtain their hostname through DHCP. If the hostname is not provided by DHCP, set statically through kernel arguments, or another method, it is obtained through a reverse DNS lookup. Reverse DNS lookup occurs after the network has been initialized on a node and can take time to resolve. Other system services can start prior to this and detect the hostname as localhost or similar. You can avoid this by using DHCP to provide the hostname for each cluster node.

Additionally, setting the hostnames through DHCP can bypass any manual DNS record name configuration errors in environments that have a DNS split-horizon implementation.

Network connectivity requirements

You must configure the network connectivity between machines to allow OpenShift Container Platform cluster components to communicate. Each machine must be able to resolve the hostnames of all other machines in the cluster.

This section provides details about the ports that are required.

In connected OpenShift Container Platform environments, all nodes are required to have internet access to pull images for platform containers and provide telemetry data to Red Hat.

Table 3. Ports used for all-machine to all-machine communications
Protocol Port Description

ICMP

N/A

Network reachability tests

TCP

1936

Metrics

9000-9999

Host level services, including the node exporter on ports 9100-9101 and the Cluster Version Operator on port 9099.

10250-10259

The default ports that Kubernetes reserves

10256

openshift-sdn

UDP

4789

VXLAN

6081

Geneve

9000-9999

Host level services, including the node exporter on ports 9100-9101.

500

IPsec IKE packets

4500

IPsec NAT-T packets

TCP/UDP

30000-32767

Kubernetes node port

ESP

N/A

IPsec Encapsulating Security Payload (ESP)

Table 4. Ports used for all-machine to control plane communications
Protocol Port Description

TCP

6443

Kubernetes API

Table 5. Ports used for control plane machine to control plane machine communications
Protocol Port Description

TCP

2379-2380

etcd server and peer ports

NTP configuration for user-provisioned infrastructure

OpenShift Container Platform clusters are configured to use a public Network Time Protocol (NTP) server by default. If you want to use a local enterprise NTP server, or if your cluster is being deployed in a disconnected network, you can configure the cluster to use a specific time server. For more information, see the documentation for Configuring chrony time service.

If a DHCP server provides NTP server information, the chrony time service on the Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS) machines read the information and can sync the clock with the NTP servers.

Additional resources

User-provisioned DNS requirements

In OpenShift Container Platform deployments, DNS name resolution is required for the following components:

  • The Kubernetes API

  • The OpenShift Container Platform application wildcard

  • The bootstrap, control plane, and compute machines

Reverse DNS resolution is also required for the Kubernetes API, the bootstrap machine, the control plane machines, and the compute machines.

DNS A/AAAA or CNAME records are used for name resolution and PTR records are used for reverse name resolution. The reverse records are important because Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS) uses the reverse records to set the hostnames for all the nodes, unless the hostnames are provided by DHCP. Additionally, the reverse records are used to generate the certificate signing requests (CSR) that OpenShift Container Platform needs to operate.

It is recommended to use a DHCP server to provide the hostnames to each cluster node. See the DHCP recommendations for user-provisioned infrastructure section for more information.

The following DNS records are required for a user-provisioned OpenShift Container Platform cluster and they must be in place before installation. In each record, <cluster_name> is the cluster name and <base_domain> is the base domain that you specify in the install-config.yaml file. A complete DNS record takes the form: <component>.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>..

Table 6. Required DNS records
Component Record Description

Kubernetes API

api.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>.

A DNS A/AAAA or CNAME record, and a DNS PTR record, to identify the API load balancer. These records must be resolvable by both clients external to the cluster and from all the nodes within the cluster.

api-int.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>.

A DNS A/AAAA or CNAME record, and a DNS PTR record, to internally identify the API load balancer. These records must be resolvable from all the nodes within the cluster.

The API server must be able to resolve the worker nodes by the hostnames that are recorded in Kubernetes. If the API server cannot resolve the node names, then proxied API calls can fail, and you cannot retrieve logs from pods.

Routes

*.apps.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>.

A wildcard DNS A/AAAA or CNAME record that refers to the application ingress load balancer. The application ingress load balancer targets the machines that run the Ingress Controller pods. The Ingress Controller pods run on the compute machines by default. These records must be resolvable by both clients external to the cluster and from all the nodes within the cluster.

For example, console-openshift-console.apps.<cluster_name>.<base_domain> is used as a wildcard route to the OpenShift Container Platform console.

Bootstrap machine

bootstrap.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>.

A DNS A/AAAA or CNAME record, and a DNS PTR record, to identify the bootstrap machine. These records must be resolvable by the nodes within the cluster.

Control plane machines

<master><n>.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>.

DNS A/AAAA or CNAME records and DNS PTR records to identify each machine for the control plane nodes. These records must be resolvable by the nodes within the cluster.

Compute machines

<worker><n>.<cluster_name>.<base_domain>.

DNS A/AAAA or CNAME records and DNS PTR records to identify each machine for the worker nodes. These records must be resolvable by the nodes within the cluster.

In OpenShift Container Platform 4.4 and later, you do not need to specify etcd host and SRV records in your DNS configuration.

You can use the dig command to verify name and reverse name resolution. See the section on Validating DNS resolution for user-provisioned infrastructure for detailed validation steps.

Example DNS configuration for user-provisioned clusters

This section provides A and PTR record configuration samples that meet the DNS requirements for deploying OpenShift Container Platform on user-provisioned infrastructure. The samples are not meant to provide advice for choosing one DNS solution over another.

In the examples, the cluster name is ocp4 and the base domain is example.com.

Example DNS A record configuration for a user-provisioned cluster

The following example is a BIND zone file that shows sample A records for name resolution in a user-provisioned cluster.

Sample DNS zone database
$TTL 1W
@	IN	SOA	ns1.example.com.	root (
			2019070700	; serial
			3H		; refresh (3 hours)
			30M		; retry (30 minutes)
			2W		; expiry (2 weeks)
			1W )		; minimum (1 week)
	IN	NS	ns1.example.com.
	IN	MX 10	smtp.example.com.
;
;
ns1.example.com.		IN	A	192.168.1.5
smtp.example.com.		IN	A	192.168.1.5
;
helper.example.com.		IN	A	192.168.1.5
helper.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.5
;
api.ocp4.example.com.		IN	A	192.168.1.5 (1)
api-int.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.5 (2)
;
*.apps.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.5 (3)
;
bootstrap.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.96 (4)
;
master0.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.97 (5)
master1.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.98 (5)
master2.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.99 (5)
;
worker0.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.11 (6)
worker1.ocp4.example.com.	IN	A	192.168.1.7 (6)
;
;EOF
1 Provides name resolution for the Kubernetes API. The record refers to the IP address of the API load balancer.
2 Provides name resolution for the Kubernetes API. The record refers to the IP address of the API load balancer and is used for internal cluster communications.
3 Provides name resolution for the wildcard routes. The record refers to the IP address of the application ingress load balancer. The application ingress load balancer targets the machines that run the Ingress Controller pods. The Ingress Controller pods run on the compute machines by default.

In the example, the same load balancer is used for the Kubernetes API and application ingress traffic. In production scenarios, you can deploy the API and application ingress load balancers separately so that you can scale the load balancer infrastructure for each in isolation.

4 Provides name resolution for the bootstrap machine.
5 Provides name resolution for the control plane machines.
6 Provides name resolution for the compute machines.
Example DNS PTR record configuration for a user-provisioned cluster

The following example BIND zone file shows sample PTR records for reverse name resolution in a user-provisioned cluster.

Sample DNS zone database for reverse records
$TTL 1W
@	IN	SOA	ns1.example.com.	root (
			2019070700	; serial
			3H		; refresh (3 hours)
			30M		; retry (30 minutes)
			2W		; expiry (2 weeks)
			1W )		; minimum (1 week)
	IN	NS	ns1.example.com.
;
5.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	api.ocp4.example.com. (1)
5.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	api-int.ocp4.example.com. (2)
;
96.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	bootstrap.ocp4.example.com. (3)
;
97.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	master0.ocp4.example.com. (4)
98.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	master1.ocp4.example.com. (4)
99.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	master2.ocp4.example.com. (4)
;
11.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	worker0.ocp4.example.com. (5)
7.1.168.192.in-addr.arpa.	IN	PTR	worker1.ocp4.example.com. (5)
;
;EOF
1 Provides reverse DNS resolution for the Kubernetes API. The PTR record refers to the record name of the API load balancer.
2 Provides reverse DNS resolution for the Kubernetes API. The PTR record refers to the record name of the API load balancer and is used for internal cluster communications.
3 Provides reverse DNS resolution for the bootstrap machine.
4 Provides reverse DNS resolution for the control plane machines.
5 Provides reverse DNS resolution for the compute machines.

A PTR record is not required for the OpenShift Container Platform application wildcard.

Load balancing requirements for user-provisioned infrastructure

Before you install OpenShift Container Platform, you must provision the API and application ingress load balancing infrastructure. In production scenarios, you can deploy the API and application ingress load balancers separately so that you can scale the load balancer infrastructure for each in isolation.

The load balancing infrastructure must meet the following requirements:

  1. API load balancer: Provides a common endpoint for users, both human and machine, to interact with and configure the platform. Configure the following conditions:

    • Layer 4 load balancing only. This can be referred to as Raw TCP, SSL Passthrough, or SSL Bridge mode. If you use SSL Bridge mode, you must enable Server Name Indication (SNI) for the API routes.

    • A stateless load balancing algorithm. The options vary based on the load balancer implementation.

    Session persistence is not required for the API load balancer to function properly.

    Configure the following ports on both the front and back of the load balancers:

    Table 7. API load balancer
    Port Back-end machines (pool members) Internal External Description

    6443

    Bootstrap and control plane. You remove the bootstrap machine from the load balancer after the bootstrap machine initializes the cluster control plane. You must configure the /readyz endpoint for the API server health check probe.

    X

    X

    Kubernetes API server

    22623

    Bootstrap and control plane. You remove the bootstrap machine from the load balancer after the bootstrap machine initializes the cluster control plane.

    X

    Machine config server

    The load balancer must be configured to take a maximum of 30 seconds from the time the API server turns off the /readyz endpoint to the removal of the API server instance from the pool. Within the time frame after /readyz returns an error or becomes healthy, the endpoint must have been removed or added. Probing every 5 or 10 seconds, with two successful requests to become healthy and three to become unhealthy, are well-tested values.

  2. Application ingress load balancer: Provides an ingress point for application traffic flowing in from outside the cluster. Configure the following conditions:

    • Layer 4 load balancing only. This can be referred to as Raw TCP, SSL Passthrough, or SSL Bridge mode. If you use SSL Bridge mode, you must enable Server Name Indication (SNI) for the ingress routes.

    • A connection-based or session-based persistence is recommended, based on the options available and types of applications that will be hosted on the platform.

    If the true IP address of the client can be seen by the application ingress load balancer, enabling source IP-based session persistence can improve performance for applications that use end-to-end TLS encryption.

    Configure the following ports on both the front and back of the load balancers:

    Table 8. Application ingress load balancer
    Port Back-end machines (pool members) Internal External Description

    443

    The machines that run the Ingress Controller pods, compute, or worker, by default.

    X

    X

    HTTPS traffic

    80

    The machines that run the Ingress Controller pods, compute, or worker, by default.

    X

    X

    HTTP traffic

    1936

    The worker nodes that run the Ingress Controller pods, by default. You must configure the /healthz/ready endpoint for the ingress health check probe.

    X

    X

    HTTP traffic

If you are deploying a three-node cluster with zero compute nodes, the Ingress Controller pods run on the control plane nodes. In three-node cluster deployments, you must configure your application ingress load balancer to route HTTP and HTTPS traffic to the control plane nodes.

A working configuration for the Ingress router is required for an OpenShift Container Platform cluster. You must configure the Ingress router after the control plane initializes.

Example load balancer configuration for user-provisioned clusters

This section provides an example API and application ingress load balancer configuration that meets the load balancing requirements for user-provisioned clusters. The sample is an /etc/haproxy/haproxy.cfg configuration for an HAProxy load balancer. The example is not meant to provide advice for choosing one load balancing solution over another.

In the example, the same load balancer is used for the Kubernetes API and application ingress traffic. In production scenarios you can deploy the API and application ingress load balancers separately so that you can scale the load balancer infrastructure for each in isolation.

Sample API and application ingress load balancer configuration
global
  log         127.0.0.1 local2
  pidfile     /var/run/haproxy.pid
  maxconn     4000
  daemon
defaults
  mode                    http
  log                     global
  option                  dontlognull
  option http-server-close
  option                  redispatch
  retries                 3
  timeout http-request    10s
  timeout queue           1m
  timeout connect         10s
  timeout client          1m
  timeout server          1m
  timeout http-keep-alive 10s
  timeout check           10s
  maxconn                 3000
frontend stats
  bind *:1936
  mode            http
  log             global
  maxconn 10
  stats enable
  stats hide-version
  stats refresh 30s
  stats show-node
  stats show-desc Stats for ocp4 cluster (1)
  stats auth admin:ocp4
  stats uri /stats
listen api-server-6443 (2)
  bind *:6443
  mode tcp
  server bootstrap bootstrap.ocp4.example.com:6443 check inter 1s backup (3)
  server master0 master0.ocp4.example.com:6443 check inter 1s
  server master1 master1.ocp4.example.com:6443 check inter 1s
  server master2 master2.ocp4.example.com:6443 check inter 1s
listen machine-config-server-22623 (4)
  bind *:22623
  mode tcp
  server bootstrap bootstrap.ocp4.example.com:22623 check inter 1s backup (3)
  server master0 master0.ocp4.example.com:22623 check inter 1s
  server master1 master1.ocp4.example.com:22623 check inter 1s
  server master2 master2.ocp4.example.com:22623 check inter 1s
listen ingress-router-443 (5)
  bind *:443
  mode tcp
  balance source
  server worker0 worker0.ocp4.example.com:443 check inter 1s
  server worker1 worker1.ocp4.example.com:443 check inter 1s
listen ingress-router-80 (6)
  bind *:80
  mode tcp
  balance source
  server worker0 worker0.ocp4.example.com:80 check inter 1s
  server worker1 worker1.ocp4.example.com:80 check inter 1s
1 In the example, the cluster name is ocp4.
2 Port 6443 handles the Kubernetes API traffic and points to the control plane machines.
3