Tutorial: Configure Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) clusters in Azure using Ansible

Important

Ansible 2.8 (or later) is required to run the sample playbooks in this article.

Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) makes it simple to deploy a managed Kubernetes cluster in Azure. AKS reduces the complexity and operational overhead of managing Kubernetes by offloading much of that responsibility to Azure. As a hosted Kubernetes service, Azure handles critical tasks like health monitoring and maintenance for you. The Kubernetes masters are managed by Azure. You only manage and maintain the agent nodes. As a managed Kubernetes service, AKS is free - you pay only for the agent nodes within your clusters; not for the masters.

AKS can be configured to use Azure Active Directory (AD) for user authentication. Once configured, you use your Azure AD authentication token to sign into the AKS cluster. The RBAC can be based on a user's identity or directory group membership.

In this tutorial, Ansible is used to:

  • Create an AKS cluster
  • Configure an AKS cluster

Prerequisites

  • Azure subscription: If you don't have an Azure subscription, create a free account before you begin.
  • Azure service principal: Create a service principal, making note of the following values: appId, displayName, password, and tenant.

Create a managed AKS cluster

The sample playbook creates a resource group and an AKS cluster within the resource group.

Save the following playbook as azure_create_aks.yml:

- name: Create Azure Kubernetes Service
  hosts: localhost
  connection: local
  vars:
    resource_group: myResourceGroup
    location: eastus
    aks_name: myAKSCluster
    username: azureuser
    ssh_key: "your_ssh_key"
    client_id: "your_client_id"
    client_secret: "your_client_secret"
  tasks:
  - name: Create resource group
    azure_rm_resourcegroup:
      name: "{{ resource_group }}"
      location: "{{ location }}"
  - name: Create a managed Azure Container Services (AKS) cluster
    azure_rm_aks:
      name: "{{ aks_name }}"
      location: "{{ location }}"
      resource_group: "{{ resource_group }}"
      dns_prefix: "{{ aks_name }}"
      linux_profile:
        admin_username: "{{ username }}"
        ssh_key: "{{ ssh_key }}"
      service_principal:
        client_id: "{{ client_id }}"
        client_secret: "{{ client_secret }}"
      agent_pool_profiles:
        - name: default
          count: 2
          vm_size: Standard_D2_v2
      tags:
        Environment: Production

Before running the playbook, see the following notes:

  • The first section within tasks defines a resource group named myResourceGroup within the eastus location.
  • The second section within tasks defines an AKS cluster named myAKSCluster within the myResourceGroup resource group.
  • For the your_ssh_key placeholder, enter your RSA public key in the single-line format - starting with "ssh-rsa" (without the quotes).

Run the playbook using the ansible-playbook command:

ansible-playbook azure_create_aks.yml

Running the playbook shows results similar to the following output:

PLAY [Create AKS] 

TASK [Gathering Facts] 
ok: [localhost]

TASK [Create resource group] 
changed: [localhost]

TASK [Create an Azure Container Services (AKS) cluster] 
changed: [localhost]

PLAY RECAP 
localhost                  : ok=3    changed=2    unreachable=0    failed=0

Scale AKS nodes

The sample playbook in the previous section defines two nodes. You adjust the number of nodes by modifying the count value in the agent_pool_profiles block.

Save the following playbook as azure_configure_aks.yml:

- name: Scale AKS cluster
  hosts: localhost
  connection: local
  vars:
    resource_group: myResourceGroup
    location: eastus
    aks_name: myAKSCluster
    username: azureuser
    ssh_key: "your_ssh_key"
    client_id: "your_client_id"
    client_secret: "your_client_secret"
  tasks:
  - name: Scaling an existed AKS cluster
    azure_rm_aks:
        name: "{{ aks_name }}"
        location: "{{ location }}"
        resource_group: "{{ resource_group }}"
        dns_prefix: "{{ aks_name }}"
        linux_profile:
          admin_username: "{{ username }}"
          ssh_key: "{{ ssh_key }}"
        service_principal:
          client_id: "{{ client_id }}"
          client_secret: "{{ client_secret }}"
        agent_pool_profiles:
          - name: default
            count: 3
            vm_size: Standard_D2_v2

Before running the playbook, see the following notes:

  • For the your_ssh_key placeholder, enter your RSA public key in the single-line format - starting with "ssh-rsa" (without the quotes).

Run the playbook using the ansible-playbook command:

ansible-playbook azure_configure_aks.yml

Running the playbook shows results similar to the following output:

PLAY [Scale AKS cluster] 

TASK [Gathering Facts] 
ok: [localhost]

TASK [Scaling an existed AKS cluster] 
changed: [localhost]

PLAY RECAP 
localhost                  : ok=2    changed=1    unreachable=0    failed=0

Delete a managed AKS cluster

The sample playbook deletes an AKS cluster.

Save the following playbook as azure_delete_aks.yml:

- name: Delete a managed Azure Container Services (AKS) cluster
  hosts: localhost
  connection: local
  vars:
    resource_group: myResourceGroup
    aks_name: myAKSCluster
  tasks:
  - name:
    azure_rm_aks:
      name: "{{ aks_name }}"
      resource_group: "{{ resource_group }}"
      state: absent

Run the playbook using the ansible-playbook command:

ansible-playbook azure_delete_aks.yml

Running the playbook shows results similar to the following output:

PLAY [Delete a managed Azure Container Services (AKS) cluster] 

TASK [Gathering Facts] 
ok: [localhost]

TASK [azure_rm_aks] 

PLAY RECAP 
localhost                  : ok=2    changed=1    unreachable=0    failed=0

Next steps