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Kontemplate templates

The template file format is based on Go's templating engine in combination with a small extension library called sprig that adds additional template functions.

Go templates can either simply display variables or build more complicated pipelines in which variables are passed to functions for further processing, or in which conditionals are evaluated for more complex template logic.

It is recommended that you check out the Golang documentation for the templating engine in addition to the cherry-picked features listed here.

Table of Contents

Basic variable interpolation

The basic template format uses {{ .variableName }} as the interpolation format.


Assuming that you include a resource set as such:

- name: api-gateway
    internalHost: http://my-internal-host/

And the api-gateway resource set includes a ConfigMap (some fields left out for the example):

# api-gateway/configmap.yaml:
kind: ConfigMap
  name: api-gateway-config
  internalHost: {{ .internalHost }}

The resulting output will be:

kind: ConfigMap
  name: api-gateway-config
  internalHost: http://my-internal-host/

Template functions

Go templates support template functions which you can think of as a sort of shell-like pipeline where text flows through transformations from left to right.

Some template functions come from Go's standard library and are listed in the Go documentation. In addition the functions declared by sprig are available in kontemplate, as well as five custom functions:

  • json: Encodes any supplied data structure as JSON.
  • gitHEAD: Retrieves the commit hash at Git HEAD.
  • passLookup: Looks up the supplied key in pass.
  • insertFile: Insert the contents of the given file in the resource set folder as a string.
  • insertTemplate: Insert the contents of the given template in the resource set folder as a string.


# With the following values:
name: Donald
certKeyPath: my-website/cert-key

# The following interpolations are possible:

{{ .name | upper }}

{{ .name | upper | repeat 2 }}

{{ .certKeyPath | passLookup }}
-> Returns content of 'my-website/cert-key' from pass

{{ gitHEAD }}
-> Returns the Git commit hash at HEAD.

Conditionals & ranges

Some logic is supported in Golang templates and can be used in Kontemplate, too.

With the following values:

useKube2IAM: true
  - 8080
  - 9090

The following interpolations are possible:

# Conditionally insert something in the template:
    foo: bar
    {{ if .useKube2IAM -}} my-api {{- end }}
# Iterate over a list of values
  {{ range .servicePorts }}
  - port: {{ . }}
  {{ end }}

Check out the Golang documentation (linked above) for more information about template logic.


Kontemplate does not by itself parse any of the content of the templates, which means that it does not validate whether the resources you supply are valid YAML or JSON.

You can perform some validation by using kontemplate apply --dry-run which will make use of the Dry-Run functionality in kubectl.

You can’t perform that action at this time.