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Creating sample user

In this guide, we will find out how to create a new user using Service Account mechanism of Kubernetes, grant this user admin permissions and login to Dashboard using bearer token tied to this user.

IMPORTANT: Make sure that you know what you are doing before proceeding. Granting admin privileges to Dashboard's Service Account might be a security risk.

Copy following snippets for ServiceAccount and ClusterRoleBinding to new manifest file like dashboard-adminuser.yaml and use kubectl apply -f dashboard-adminuser.yaml to create them.

Create Service Account

We are creating Service Account with name admin-user in namespace kubernetes-dashboard first.

apiVersion: v1
kind: ServiceAccount
  name: admin-user
  namespace: kubernetes-dashboard

Create ClusterRoleBinding

In most cases after provisioning our cluster using kops or kubeadm or any other popular tool, the ClusterRole admin-Role already exists in the cluster. We can use it and create only ClusterRoleBinding for our ServiceAccount.

NOTE: apiVersion of ClusterRoleBinding resource may differ between Kubernetes versions. Prior to Kubernetes v1.8 the apiVersion was

kind: ClusterRoleBinding
  name: admin-user
  kind: ClusterRole
  name: cluster-admin
- kind: ServiceAccount
  name: admin-user
  namespace: kubernetes-dashboard

Bearer Token

Now we need to find token we can use to log in. Execute following command:

kubectl -n kubernetes-dashboard describe secret $(kubectl -n kubernetes-dashboard get secret | grep admin-user | awk '{print $1}')

It should print something like:

Name:         admin-user-token-v57nw
Namespace:    kubernetes-dashboard
Labels:       <none>
Annotations: admin-user


ca.crt:     1066 bytes
namespace:  20 bytes
token:      eyJhbGciOiJSUzI1NiIsImtpZCI6IiJ9.eyJpc3MiOiJrdWJlcm5ldGVzL3NlcnZpY2VhY2NvdW50Iiwia3ViZXJuZXRlcy5pby9zZXJ2aWNlYWNjb3VudC9uYW1lc3BhY2UiOiJrdWJlcm5ldGVzLWRhc2hib2FyZCIsImt1YmVybmV0ZXMuaW8vc2VydmljZWFjY291bnQvc2VjcmV0Lm5hbWUiOiJhZG1pbi11c2VyLXRva2VuLXY1N253Iiwia3ViZXJuZXRlcy5pby9zZXJ2aWNlYWNjb3VudC9zZXJ2aWNlLWFjY291bnQubmFtZSI6ImFkbWluLXVzZXIiLCJrdWJlcm5ldGVzLmlvL3NlcnZpY2VhY2NvdW50L3NlcnZpY2UtYWNjb3VudC51aWQiOiIwMzAzMjQzYy00MDQwLTRhNTgtOGE0Ny04NDllZTliYTc5YzEiLCJzdWIiOiJzeXN0ZW06c2VydmljZWFjY291bnQ6a3ViZXJuZXRlcy1kYXNoYm9hcmQ6YWRtaW4tdXNlciJ9.Z2JrQlitASVwWbc-s6deLRFVk5DWD3P_vjUFXsqVSY10pbjFLG4njoZwh8p3tLxnX_VBsr7_6bwxhWSYChp9hwxznemD5x5HLtjb16kI9Z7yFWLtohzkTwuFbqmQaMoget_nYcQBUC5fDmBHRfFvNKePh_vSSb2h_aYXa8GV5AcfPQpY7r461itme1EXHQJqv-SN-zUnguDguCTjD80pFZ_CmnSE1z9QdMHPB8hoB4V68gtswR1VLa6mSYdgPwCHauuOobojALSaMc3RH7MmFUumAgguhqAkX3Omqd3rJbYOMRuMjhANqd08piDC3aIabINX6gP5-Tuuw2svnV6NYQ

Now copy the token and paste it into Enter token field on login screen.

Sing in

Click Sign in button and that's it. You are now logged in as an admin.


In order to find out more about how to grant/deny permissions in Kubernetes read official authentication & authorization documentation.

Copyright 2019 The Kubernetes Dashboard Authors

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