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Configurable Parameters in Kubespray

Generic Ansible variables

You can view facts gathered by Ansible automatically here.

Some variables of note include:

  • ansible_user: user to connect to via SSH
  • ansible_default_ipv4.address: IP address Ansible automatically chooses. Generated based on the output from the command ip -4 route get

Common vars that are used in Kubespray

  • calico_version - Specify version of Calico to use
  • calico_cni_version - Specify version of Calico CNI plugin to use
  • docker_version - Specify version of Docker to used (should be quoted string). Must match one of the keys defined for docker_versioned_pkg in roles/container-engine/docker/vars/*.yml.
  • etcd_version - Specify version of ETCD to use
  • ipip - Enables Calico ipip encapsulation by default
  • kube_network_plugin - Sets k8s network plugin (default Calico)
  • kube_proxy_mode - Changes k8s proxy mode to iptables mode
  • kube_version - Specify a given Kubernetes version
  • searchdomains - Array of DNS domains to search when looking up hostnames
  • nameservers - Array of nameservers to use for DNS lookup
  • preinstall_selinux_state - Set selinux state, permitted values are permissive and disabled.

Addressing variables

  • ip - IP to use for binding services (host var)
  • access_ip - IP for other hosts to use to connect to. Often required when deploying from a cloud, such as OpenStack or GCE and you have separate public/floating and private IPs.
  • ansible_default_ipv4.address - Not Kubespray-specific, but it is used if ip and access_ip are undefined
  • loadbalancer_apiserver - If defined, all hosts will connect to this address instead of localhost for kube-masters and kube-master[0] for kube-nodes. See more details in the HA guide.
  • loadbalancer_apiserver_localhost - makes all hosts to connect to the apiserver internally load balanced endpoint. Mutual exclusive to the loadbalancer_apiserver. See more details in the HA guide.

Cluster variables

Kubernetes needs some parameters in order to get deployed. These are the following default cluster parameters:

  • cluster_name - Name of cluster (default is cluster.local)
  • container_manager - Container Runtime to install in the nodes (default is docker)
  • dns_domain - Name of cluster DNS domain (default is cluster.local)
  • kube_network_plugin - Plugin to use for container networking
  • kube_service_addresses - Subnet for cluster IPs (default is Must not overlap with kube_pods_subnet
  • kube_pods_subnet - Subnet for Pod IPs (default is Must not overlap with kube_service_addresses.
  • kube_network_node_prefix - Subnet allocated per-node for pod IPs. Remaining bits in kube_pods_subnet dictates how many kube-nodes can be in cluster. Setting this > 25 will raise an assertion in playbooks if the kubelet_max_pods var also isn't adjusted accordingly (assertion not applicable to calico which doesn't use this as a hard limit, see Calico IP block sizes.
  • enable_dual_stack_networks - Setting this to true will provision both IPv4 and IPv6 networking for pods and services.
  • kube_service_addresses_ipv6 - Subnet for cluster IPv6 IPs (default is fd85:ee78:d8a6:8607::1000/116). Must not overlap with kube_pods_subnet_ipv6.
  • kube_pods_subnet_ipv6 - Subnet for Pod IPv6 IPs (default is fd85:ee78:d8a6:8607::1:0000/112). Must not overlap with kube_service_addresses_ipv6.
  • kube_network_node_prefix_ipv6 - Subnet allocated per-node for pod IPv6 IPs. Remaining bits in kube_pods_subnet_ipv6 dictates how many kube-nodes can be in cluster.
  • skydns_server - Cluster IP for DNS (default is
  • skydns_server_secondary - Secondary Cluster IP for CoreDNS used with coredns_dual deployment (default is
  • enable_coredns_k8s_external - If enabled, it configures the k8s_external plugin on the CoreDNS service.
  • coredns_k8s_external_zone - Zone that will be used when CoreDNS k8s_external plugin is enabled (default is k8s_external.local)
  • enable_coredns_k8s_endpoint_pod_names - If enabled, it configures endpoint_pod_names option for kubernetes plugin. on the CoreDNS service.
  • cloud_provider - Enable extra Kubelet option if operating inside GCE or OpenStack (default is unset)
  • kube_feature_gates - A list of key=value pairs that describe feature gates for alpha/experimental Kubernetes features. (defaults is [])
  • authorization_modes - A list of authorization mode that the cluster should be configured for. Defaults to ['Node', 'RBAC'] (Node and RBAC authorizers). Note: Node and RBAC are enabled by default. Previously deployed clusters can be converted to RBAC mode. However, your apps which rely on Kubernetes API will require a service account and cluster role bindings. You can override this setting by setting authorization_modes to [].

Note, if cloud providers have any use of the, like instances' private addresses, make sure to pick another values for kube_service_addresses and kube_pods_subnet, for example from the

Enabling Dual Stack (IPV4 + IPV6) networking

If enable_dual_stack_networks is set to true, Dual Stack networking will be enabled in the cluster. This will use the default IPv4 and IPv6 subnets specified in the defaults file in the kubespray-defaults role, unless overridden of course. The default config will give you room for up to 256 nodes with 126 pods per node, and up to 4096 services.

DNS variables

By default, hosts are set up with as an upstream DNS server and all other settings from your existing /etc/resolv.conf are lost. Set the following variables to match your requirements.

  • upstream_dns_servers - Array of upstream DNS servers configured on host in addition to Kubespray deployed DNS
  • nameservers - Array of DNS servers configured for use by hosts
  • searchdomains - Array of up to 4 search domains
  • dns_etchosts - Content of hosts file for coredns and nodelocaldns

For more information, see DNS Stack.

Other service variables

  • docker_options - Commonly used to set --insecure-registry=myregistry.mydomain:5000
  • docker_plugins - This list can be used to define Docker plugins to install.
  • containerd_config - Controls some parameters in containerd configuration file (usually /etc/containerd/config.toml). Default config can be overriden in inventory vars.
  • http_proxy/https_proxy/no_proxy/no_proxy_exclude_workers/additional_no_proxy - Proxy variables for deploying behind a proxy. Note that no_proxy defaults to all internal cluster IPs and hostnames that correspond to each node.
  • kubelet_cgroup_driver - Allows manual override of the cgroup-driver option for Kubelet. By default autodetection is used to match Docker configuration.
  • kubelet_rotate_certificates - Auto rotate the kubelet client certificates by requesting new certificates from the kube-apiserver when the certificate expiration approaches.
  • kubelet_rotate_server_certificates - Auto rotate the kubelet server certificates by requesting new certificates from the kube-apiserver when the certificate expiration approaches. Note that server certificates are not approved automatically. Approve them manually (kubectl get csr, kubectl certificate approve) or implement custom approving controller like kubelet-rubber-stamp.
  • node_labels - Labels applied to nodes via kubelet --node-labels parameter. For example, labels can be set in the inventory as variables or more widely in group_vars. node_labels can be defined either as a dict or a comma-separated labels string:
  label1_name: label1_value
  label2_name: label2_value

node_labels: "label1_name=label1_value,label2_name=label2_value"
  • node_taints - Taints applied to nodes via kubelet --register-with-taints parameter. For example, taints can be set in the inventory as variables or more widely in group_vars. node_taints has to be defined as a list of strings in format key=value:effect, e.g.:
  - ""
  • podsecuritypolicy_enabled - When set to true, enables the PodSecurityPolicy admission controller and defines two policies privileged (applying to all resources in kube-system namespace and kubelet) and restricted (applying all other namespaces). Addons deployed in kube-system namespaces are handled.

  • kubernetes_audit - When set to true, enables Auditing. The auditing parameters can be tuned via the following variables (which default values are shown below):

    • audit_log_path: /var/log/audit/kube-apiserver-audit.log
    • audit_log_maxage: 30
    • audit_log_maxbackups: 1
    • audit_log_maxsize: 100
    • audit_policy_file: "{{ kube_config_dir }}/audit-policy/apiserver-audit-policy.yaml"

    By default, the audit_policy_file contains default rules that can be overridden with the audit_policy_custom_rules variable.

Custom flags for Kube Components

For all kube components, custom flags can be passed in. This allows for edge cases where users need changes to the default deployment that may not be applicable to all deployments.

Extra flags for the kubelet can be specified using these variables, in the form of dicts of key-value pairs of configuration parameters that will be inserted into the kubelet YAML config file. The kubelet_node_config_extra_args apply kubelet settings only to nodes and not masters. Example:

    memory.available: "100Mi"
    memory.available: "30s"
    memory.available: "300Mi"

The possible vars are:

  • kubelet_config_extra_args
  • kubelet_node_config_extra_args

Previously, the same parameters could be passed as flags to kubelet binary with the following vars:

  • kubelet_custom_flags
  • kubelet_node_custom_flags

The kubelet_node_custom_flags apply kubelet settings only to nodes and not masters. Example:

  - "--eviction-hard=memory.available<100Mi"
  - "--eviction-soft-grace-period=memory.available=30s"
  - "--eviction-soft=memory.available<300Mi"

This alternative is deprecated and will remain until the flags are completely removed from kubelet

Extra flags for the API server, controller, and scheduler components can be specified using these variables, in the form of dicts of key-value pairs of configuration parameters that will be inserted into the kubeadm YAML config file:

  • kube_kubeadm_apiserver_extra_args
  • kube_kubeadm_controller_extra_args
  • kube_kubeadm_scheduler_extra_args

App variables

  • helm_version - Only supports v3.x. Existing v2 installs (with Tiller) will not be modified and need to be removed manually.