Updated April 13, 2023
Introduction to Kubernetes Ingress Controller
Ingress is a load balancer for Kubernetes, the main purpose of ingress is to expose the HTTPS and HTTP routes that are outside the cluster to the services within the cluster itself. By the use of ingress controller, we can also define the rules which can turn control the traffic routing. Ingress controller is responsible to fulfill the ingress, also this count’ does not expose the arbitrary protocols or ports. Basically, ingress controller accepts the traffic which is coming outside the Kubernetes platform and helps us to load balance it to the pods. Ingress controller also helps us to optimize the complexity of managing the Kubernetes traffic routing by proving the bridge between the external nodes and Kubernetes service. In the coming section of the tutorial, we will see its internal working, implementation in detail for better understanding and clarity for beginners.
What is Kubernetes ingress controller?
As we have already discussed its brief definition let’s take a closer look to understand what it does,
1) Ingress controller helps us manage the external traffic which is coming to the Kubernetes platform.
2) It provides a bridge between Kubernetes service and the external nodes.
3) With the help of I controller we can route the HTTP and HTTPS traffic within the Kubernetes cluster
4) It also helps us to optimize the complexity which can arise while managing the traffic routing.
5) Ingress controller can be configured by the use of Kubernetes API and then we can deploy objects called ‘ingress resources’.
6) One of the main purposes is, it helps us to monitor the Kubernetes pods which are in running state, based on this it automatically updates the load balancing rule on the addition and removing of the pods from the service.
In the coming section of the tutorial, we will discuss more the internal working, its setup, and the best ingress we have.
How to setup Kubernetes ingress controller?
In this section we will see the setup steps for ingress controller, let’s get started;
1) First we should have an ingress controller which can satisfy Ingress. If we are only certain of the ingress resource then there will be no effect.
2) To create the ingress controller, it should follow the reference specification.
Below is the ingress controller reference file, which we can use to create;
apiVersion: networking.k8s.io/v1 kind: Ingress metadata: name: minimal-ingress annotations: nginx.ingress.kubernetes.io/rewrite-target: / spec: rules: - http: paths: - path: /testpath pathType: Prefix backend: service: name: test port: number: 80
As we can see in the above file, it contains the kind, metadata, annotation, spec, and rules in the .yml file. We need to keep in mind the below points while setting up the ingress controller in Kubernetes;
1) Name of the ingress controller should be a valid DNS subdomain name.
2) As we have different types of ingress controllers so they will support different types of annotations.
3) Also ingress controller uses annotations for configuration a few of the options.
4) Lately we have a spec in the yml file, which specifies all the required information which will be needed in order to configure the proxy server or the load balancer.
5) The important parameter that the spec contains is the rule, which traces and tracks all the incoming requests against the rule we defined in the yml file.
6) Here, ingress controller rules support only the HTTP(S) traffic.
Best Kubernetes ingress controller and Examples
Let’s discuss the various type of Kubernetes ingress controllers in detail with the example, let’s get started;
1) GCP Ingress Controller: This is one of the top-notch ingress controller provided by Google, here GCP stands for Google Cloud Platform, this ingress controller create the Google Cloud load balancer and also help us to configure it, according to the rule and information that we provide. To use this Ingress controller we must have to enable the HTTP load balancing add-on.
2) Istio Ingress: This ingress controller makes use of Envoy proxies, to manage all the traffic to the service mesh. This ingress controller that is Istio provides the best integration with the existing service and Istio fabric, with the availability, routing, deployment models, and security. But it is not lightweight, it has a large learning curve.
3) Ambassador: This ingress controller is a load balancer and API Gateway, which comes with ingress support. It comes up with fully-featured such as high availability, security, serverless integration. But this ingress controller is based on Envoy, also it very easily gets connected with the service mesh.
4) F5 Container Ingress: This ingress controller uses OpenShift or Kubernetes it is a cloud-native connector, use either of them as BIG-IP orchestration. This BIG-IP controller monitors the Kubernetes API for updating BIG-IP and formatted resources and configures the system accordingly.
5) Traefik: This ingress controller provides us the Kubernetes Ingress controller, this controller helps us to access the cluster service, with the support of Ingress specification.
It is one of the types of Ingress Controllers, which helps us to for the same thing, let’s discuss this in detail for better understanding and clarity, see below;
It is one of the most popular Ingress controllers, which is TCP/HTTP proxy solution that existed before the Kubernetes, it also helps us to achieve high performance so when we target this then it is one of the best choices among the different Ingress controllers we have that we have already seen. Also if we need load balancing which is the primary factor for us, then we can again go for HAProxy Ingress controller because it is a great option. This controller also offers us the dynamic configuration update which can be done via API.
To understand the ingress controller go through the whole article and follow the step-by-step instruction to understand it better. Also, we have given a brief overview of the purpose of the ingress controller; by the end of this tutorial, you will have a better understanding of the usage and working of the ingress controller in detail.
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