Abhimanyu Chitra Selvan



Provisioning Kubernetes clusters on Linode using Terraform and LKE

Provisioning Kubernetes clusters on Linode using Terraform and LKE

Abhimanyu Chitra Selvan's photo
Abhimanyu Chitra Selvan
·Sep 18, 2021·

3 min read

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In this blog post, I'll demonstrate how I am using Linode Kubernetes Engine(LKE) and Terraform to provision kubernetes clusters for Hivenetes (a personal project that I am working on). I chose Linode as the cloud provider as it is extremely easy to setup, cost effective and many more. I dont think I will use any other cloud provider other than Linode at least for my personal projects. Now that I have established my love for Linode, let's get started shall we?

Before you begin

Make sure you have the following setup,

  • Linode account (Note: Using LKE is not free)
  • Terraform installed

Setting up your workspace

  • Generate your Linode API Token by following these steps and save them in a secure place.

  • Clone the hivenetes/apiculture repository

      git clone https://github.com/hivenetes/apiculture.git && cd apiculture/lke_cluster
  • Initial directory setup should be like this,

         ├── hivenetes.tf            # Main Configuration File
          ── linode_types.json       # List of Linode Types - Pricing and Specs
         └── variables.tf            # Variables used in hivenetes.tf
  • Create a terraform.tfvars file with the following content,

      # This just an example
      label = "hivenetes"
      k8s_version = "1.19"
      region = "eu-central"
      pools = [
          # Type can be found from linode_types.json
          type : "g6-standard-2" 
          count : 3
  • Create a secret.tfvars file that holds the API Token

      token = "<your linode api token>"

[Note]: the .tfvars file should not be checked in to as it may contain sensitive information

Time to launch

Open a terminal and execute the following,

# Initialise terraform
terraform init
# View your terraform plan
terraform plan -var-file="secret.tfvars"
# Apply the plan
terraform apply -var-file="secret.tfvars"
# After a few minutes, you will see the outputs being displayed on the terminal

Connecting to LKE cluster

Open a terminal and execute the following,

# Saving the cluster configuration to hivenetes-config.yaml
export KUBE_VAR=`terraform output kubeconfig` && sed -e 's/^"//' -e 's/"$//' <<<"$KUBE_VAR" | base64 -d > hivenetes-config.yaml
# Add the kubeconfig file to your $KUBECONFIG environment variable
export KUBECONFIG=hivenetes-config.yaml

You can now begin interacting with your cluster using kubectl

# To list all your LKE Nodes
kubectl get nodes

Note: I use fubectl to interact with k8s as it makes my life way easier. I encourage you to check it out. If you are using microk8s then you can use microk8s fubectl, an microk8s adapted version that I made.


Make sure to clean up and destroy your clusters after using as you will be charged based on your usage.

# Bye Bye Hivenetes
terraform destroy

Now that is how simple and easy it is to spin up a Kubernetes cluster on Linode.

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