Create a Kubernetes cluster

Create a Kubernetes cluster

In this topic, we'll walk through the steps to create a Kubernetes cluster. If you're new to Kubernetes, these instructions are for you.

There are several supported Kubernetes platforms and versions. This walkthrough presents an example using Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) version 1.16.

Once a Kubernetes cluster is established, you can proceed to the Get started with Cass Operator topic to apply pre-configured Cass Operator manifests and related definitions to the Kubernetes environment.

With those resources in place, you can then use Cass Operator to manage open-source Apache Cassandra® or DataStax Enterprise (DSE) resources in your Kubernetes cluster.

Here's the overall process as described in this topic:

  1. Start in the Google Cloud Console.
  2. Create or select a project, and set up billing information for potential use after the free trial.
  3. Create the Kubernetes cluster. In this example, we'll specify a few non-default options.
  4. Install the kubectl command-line tool, which you can use to control your Kubernetes cluster. We'll get kubectl from the Google Cloud SDK.
  5. Complete the steps to authenticate connections between your newly created Kubernetes cluster and your local machine, from which you'll enter kubectl commands and perform related tasks.

Start in the Google Cloud Console

Start by navigating to the Kubernetes Engine page in the Google Cloud Console. If you haven't already done so, create or log into a Google account.

Read the free trial Terms of Service. If you agree, check the box and click Continue.

Create or select a GCP project, and set up billing

In the Google Cloud Console, create or select a project. If it's new, name the project.

Enter your information and sign up for the free trial.
Note: The terms may vary for each country. This example shows a $300 USD credit to spend during 12 months.
For example, once the project is created and billing information provided (but not yet enabled), the console presents a verification message:

Google Cloud Console with created project

Click Enable billing. It may take a few minutes while the Kubernetes Engine API and related services are enabled. When the payment verification completes, GCP console displays its options:

Google Cloud Console with billing data verified and Create Cluster button is active but not clicked yet

Click Create cluster to initiate the next set of dialogs.

Select options while creating the Kubernetes cluster

On the resulting Cluster basics page, instead of accepting all the defaults and before clicking Create, DataStax recommends following the numbered steps via the MY FIRST CLUSTER option near the upper right side of the page:

Google Cloud Console presents a MY FIRST CLUSTER image with a link

Doing so will familiar you with all the options and allow you to enter your preferred values.
  1. Name your cluster and click Next.
  2. Pick a location. This example chose Zonal and set the zone to us-central-1-c. Adjust according to your preference, and click Next.
  3. Set the release channel. This example chose the Static version option and selected 1.16.8-gke.15.
    Note: This value was chosen in anticipation of applying the pre-configured 1.16 manifest YAML file, as covered in the next topic of this guide. However, you can select any version from 1.13 to 1.17. DataStax provides per-version manifest YAML for your convenience to define common settings and help you get started quickly. Hold that thought while we continue to define options for the Kubernetes cluster creation.

    So far in this example of the console's Cluster basics options, we chose:

    Google Cloud Console with billing data verified and Create Cluster button active

    When you're ready, click Next.

  4. Chose low-cost resources. This example chose the default General Purpose machine configuration, using Series N1 and machine type n1-standard-4 (4 vCPU, 15 GB memory). To keep costs low during the free trial, we also chose to keep the autoscaling and telemetry options disabled.
  5. Review your cluster settings. To apply your custom settings, click Make Changes. Then click Create on the resulting page.

The Google Cloud Console presents an entry for your created Kubernetes cluster. For example:

Google Cloud Console shows the created cluster on its Cluster tab

Install kubectl from the Google Cloud SDK

The kubectl command-line tool lets you control Kubernetes clusters. When you're working with the Kubernetes cluster and Cass Operator, it's likely that you'll use the Google Cloud Console user interface, as well as a Terminal window from which to submit kubectl commands. If you don't already have kubectl installed, there are many options, but one is to first install the Google Cloud SDK. On the site, refer to the article about downloading the SDK and installing kubectl from it.

To go directly to the versioned list of Google Cloud SDK packages, see these installation instructions.

For example, to install the Google Cloud SDK on a 64-bit machine using curl:
curl -LO
To extract the tarball, for example:
tar -xzvf google-cloud-sdk-347.0.0-linux-x86_64.tar.gz
To install the Google Cloud SDK:
After the installation completes, source your updated profile settings. For example:
source ~/.bashrc
The Google Cloud SDK provides many tools. In this example, to install kubectl from the SDK:
gcloud components install kubectl
If you receive a warning message about an older version of a tool on your machine, you can remove it. For example:
WARNING:   There are older versions of Google Cloud Platform tools on your system PATH.
  Please remove the following to avoid accidentally invoking these old tools:

For example, to remove it and then verify the just-installed location:
sudo rm /usr/local/bin/kubectl
which kubectl

Configure the Google Cloud environment from your local machine

On your local machine where you just installed the Google Cloud SDK and kubectl, there are a few additional steps to create the connection from your local machine to the cloud environment.

Enter this command:
./google-cloud-sdk/bin/gcloud init
In the command output, watch for the paused message to log in. For example:
Welcome! This command will take you through the configuration of gcloud.

Your current configuration has been set to: [default]

You can skip diagnostics next time by using the following flag:
  gcloud init --skip-diagnostics

Network diagnostic detects and fixes local network connection issues.
Checking network connection...done.                                                                                                                                                         
Reachability Check passed.
Network diagnostic passed (1/1 checks passed).

You must log in to continue. Would you like to log in (Y/n)?

Go to the following link in your browser: ...
Go to the URL in a browser. If you're already logged into the Google email account that you used while creating the Kubernetes cluster, the page presents an OAuth code. For example:

Google web page shows generated authorization code for the logged-in user

Now return to your Terminal session, and paste the code at this prompt:

Enter verification code: 4/0gEBbO8hFWV2pA8lL8nK4xqPMwbXbOTrM9VodAi2l0rhYePNbFKr2KI
You are logged in as: (account email address) ...
The command output continues, displaying your auth'd email address, and prompting you to confirm or specify settings for the Kubernetes cloud environment. For example, here's an extract of the messages and prompts:
Pick cloud project to use: 
 [1] johnsmart-project-datastax-fte
 [2] Create a new project
Please enter numeric choice or text value (must exactly match list 
item):  1

Your current project has been set to: [johnsmart-project-datastax-fte].

Do you want to configure a default Compute Region and Zone? (Y/n)?  

Which Google Compute Engine zone would you like to use as project 
If you do not specify a zone via a command line flag while working 
with Compute Engine resources, the default is assumed.
 [1] us-east1-b
 [7] us-central1-c
Please enter numeric choice or text value (must exactly match list 
item):  7

Your project default Compute Engine zone has been set to [us-central1-c].
You can change it by running [gcloud config set compute/zone NAME].

Your project default Compute Engine region has been set to [us-central1].
You can change it by running [gcloud config set compute/region NAME].
Your Google Cloud SDK is configured and ready to use!

Complete the connection between the GKE cloud and your machine

Now that the Google Cloud SDK is configured, there's one more step to complete the connection between the Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) cloud instance and your local machine.

In the Google Cloud Console, go to the Clusters tab. Click the box next to your cluster's name. For example:

Google Cloud Console shows cluster instance and has Connect button, not clicked yet

Click the Connect button near the right side of the display. The console displays a command example.

Copy the command from the Google Cloud Console, and enter it in your Terminal session. For example:
gcloud container clusters get-credentials johnsmart-datastax-cluster1 --zone us-central1-c --project johnsmart-project-datastax-fte
Fetching cluster endpoint and auth data.
kubeconfig entry generated for johnsmart-datastax-cluster1.

What's next?

Congratulations on creating your Kubernetes cluster and completing the steps to connect your GKE cloud instance and your local machine. You can now submit kubectl commands that directly control your Kubernetes cluster, including the commands to apply Cass Operator configuration YAML files – provided by DataStax – to the Kubernetes cluster. For those steps, see the next topic, Get started with Cass Operator.