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Extending Kubernetes with Spring Cloud

This repository serves as an index for a workshop like set of excersices about creating our custom resource definitions for Kubernetes using Spring Cloud components.

During these exercises, you will learn about how to create your custom extensions, deploy them and use them as part of a Kubernetes Operator that will understand the domain specific restrictions that needs to be applied to the infrastructure. At the end you can find also some useful links to other related projects.


We will use the following repositories to build our services and our Kubernetes Operator:

It is recommended to clone all these repos under the same directory, as the following instructions are based in that assumption:

mkdir extending-k8s && \
cd extending-k8s && \
git clone && \
git clone && \
git clone && \
git clone && \
git clone 


For this tutorial we use Kubernetes, Istio and KNative to demonstrate what can be achieved with a Kubernetes Operator and how that might be done. An Kubernetes Operator doesn't require these technology stack, but due the adoption of these Kubernetes Extensions we believe that it is a good starting place.


For setting up the cluster in GKE you can follow this guide

NOTE: Remember that you can always find the external IP of your Gateway by running:

kubectl get svc istio-ingressgateway -n istio-system


This workshop follows the next checkpoints:

Checkpoint 0

Services A, B and Function A

We will start by deploying a set of services into our K8s Cluster. Here we will use the Service and Deployment resource, which will cause Kubernetes to create some other resources such as ReplicaSet and Pods.

Checkpoint #0

Checkpoint #0

Now that we have our k8s services up and running we can expose them using Istio Gateway to access them from outside the cluster

NOTE: Remember that you can always find the external IP of your Gateway by running:

kubectl get svc istio-ingressgateway -n istio-system

Now that we have exposed our services we can access them by creating a GET HTTP request to:

http <EXTERNAL-IP>/my-service-a/


http <EXTERNAL-IP>/my-service-b/

Checkpoint 1

Controller v1 (Gateway/Routes)

"A controller actively monitor and maintains a set of Kubernetes resources in a desired state." - Kubernetes Patterns

While working with controllers/operators we will be basically implementing the Reconciler Pattern by following the next infinite loop:

Reconcile Loop

In this case we will build K8s controller that understands about Services and create routes to forward traffic to different services based on the request path. We will achieve this, by using the Spring Cloud Gateway plus the Spring Cloud Kubernetes Discovery implementation.

Checkpoint #1

Checkpoint 2

Controller v2 (Notify if a Service is missing) In this checkpoint we have a controller that watch the K8s Service resources and as soon as one gets deleted just print a log message.

Checkpoint 3

"An Operator is a Controller that uses CRDs to encapsulate operational knowledge for a specific application.." - Kubernetes Patterns

Operator v1 (CRDs and App)

On this check point we create our CRDs and we will create an Operator that understand about these new resources and act on them.

Checkpoint #3

  • Our CRDs
    • Deploy CRDs: service-a, service-b and Application
    • Use kubectl to get the resources
    • Look at the operator's output, see how the status and URL of the application are provided when all the Services are present

Checkpoint 4

Operator v2 (+Checking K8s Services) On the second version of the Operator we link our CRDs ServiceA, ServiceB and Application to K8s native resources and we act accordingly depending on the changes.

Checkpoint #4

  • Deploy version 2 of k8s-operator
    • Look at code that watch k8s resources changes
    • Creating custom routes based on CRDs for Applications
    • Expose apps based on application healthy checks

Checkpoint #4



These examples are just very simple examples of what can be done. Now that we are running with existing K8s extensions such as Istio, KNative, Tekton CD, Gloo, etc, we have the perfect opportunity to integrate and build more complex operators that really understand the infrastructure, can monitor and act to better integrate our domain specific resources.

Please feel free to create issues, ask questions or even send PRs if you want to collaborate to expand these examples.

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