Run Ark on GCP

You can run Kubernetes on Google Cloud Platform in either:

  • Kubernetes on Google Compute Engine virtual machines
  • Google Kubernetes Engine

If you do not have the gcloud and gsutil CLIs locally installed, follow the user guide to set them up.

Create GCS bucket

Heptio Ark requires an object storage bucket in which to store backups, preferably unique to a single Kubernetes cluster (see the FAQ for more details). Create a GCS bucket, replacing the <YOUR_BUCKET> placeholder with the name of your bucket:


gsutil mb gs://$BUCKET/

Create service account

To integrate Heptio Ark with GCP, create an Ark-specific Service Account:

  1. View your current config settings:

    gcloud config list

    Store the project value from the results in the environment variable $PROJECT_ID.

    PROJECT_ID=$(gcloud config get-value project)
  2. Create a service account:

    gcloud iam service-accounts create heptio-ark \
        --display-name "Heptio Ark service account"

    If you’ll be using Ark to backup multiple clusters with multiple GCS buckets, it may be desirable to create a unique username per cluster rather than the default heptio-ark.

    Then list all accounts and find the heptio-ark account you just created:

    gcloud iam service-accounts list

    Set the $SERVICE_ACCOUNT_EMAIL variable to match its email value.

    SERVICE_ACCOUNT_EMAIL=$(gcloud iam service-accounts list \
      --filter="displayName:Heptio Ark service account" \
      --format 'value(email)')
  3. Attach policies to give heptio-ark the necessary permissions to function:

    gcloud iam roles create heptio_ark.server \
        --project $PROJECT_ID \
        --title "Heptio Ark Server" \
        --permissions "$(IFS=","; echo "${ROLE_PERMISSIONS[*]}")"    
    gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $PROJECT_ID \
        --member serviceAccount:$SERVICE_ACCOUNT_EMAIL \
        --role projects/$PROJECT_ID/roles/heptio_ark.server
    gsutil iam ch serviceAccount:$SERVICE_ACCOUNT_EMAIL:objectAdmin gs://${BUCKET}
  4. Create a service account key, specifying an output file (credentials-ark) in your local directory:

    gcloud iam service-accounts keys create credentials-ark \
        --iam-account $SERVICE_ACCOUNT_EMAIL

Credentials and configuration

If you run Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), make sure that your current IAM user is a cluster-admin. This role is required to create RBAC objects. See the GKE documentation for more information.

In the Ark directory (i.e. where you extracted the release tarball), run the following to first set up namespaces, RBAC, and other scaffolding. To run in a custom namespace, make sure that you have edited the YAML files to specify the namespace. See Run in custom namespace.

kubectl apply -f config/common/00-prereqs.yaml

Create a Secret. In the directory of the credentials file you just created, run:

kubectl create secret generic cloud-credentials \
    --namespace heptio-ark \
    --from-file cloud=credentials-ark

Note: If you use a custom namespace, replace heptio-ark with the name of the custom namespace

Specify the following values in the example files:

  • In file config/gcp/05-ark-backupstoragelocation.yaml:

  • (Optional) If you run the nginx example, in file config/nginx-app/with-pv.yaml:

    • Replace <YOUR_STORAGE_CLASS_NAME> with standard. This is GCP’s default StorageClass name.
  • (Optional, use only if you need to specify multiple volume snapshot locations) In config/gcp/10-deployment.yaml:

    • Uncomment the --default-volume-snapshot-locations and replace provider locations with the values for your environment.

Start the server

In the root of your Ark directory, run:

kubectl apply -f config/gcp/05-ark-backupstoragelocation.yaml
kubectl apply -f config/gcp/06-ark-volumesnapshotlocation.yaml
kubectl apply -f config/gcp/10-deployment.yaml
Getting Started

To help you get started, see the documentation.