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      TOBS

      How to Deploy TOBS on LKE


      Updated
      , by Rajakavitha Kodhandapani

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      Create a Linode account
      to try this guide with a $100 credit.

      This credit will be applied to any valid services used during your first 60 days.

      In this guide, deploy
      TOBS to your Linode Kubernetes Engine (LKE) cluster using
      Helm. And use kubectl port-forward for local access to your monitoring interfaces.

      The Prometheus Operator Monitoring Stack

      TOBS, short for The Observability Stack, is a pre-packaged distribution of monitoring tools and dashboard interfaces which can be installed on any existing Kubernetes cluster. It includes many of the most popular open-source observability tools such as Prometheus, Grafana, Promlens, TimescaleDB, and others. Together, these provide a maintainable solution to analyze the traffic on the server and identify any potential problems with a deployment. You can use Helm charts to configure and update TOBS deployments.

      TOBS includes the following components:

      • OpenTelemetry collector is deployed to collect traces.
      • Alertmanager, is deployed alongside Prometheus, forms the alerting layer of the stack, and handles alerts generated by Prometheus.
      • Grafana is a data visualization and analytics tool that allows you to build dashboards and graphs for your metrics data.
      • PromLens helps users build PromQL queries with ease. PromLens is a PromQL query builder that helps you build, understand, and fix your queries much more effectively.
      • TimescaleDB is for long-term storage of metric data. Long-term storage provides the ability to perform post-hoc analysis on metric data over long periods of time. Such data analysis can be used for capacity planning, identifying slow-moving regressions, trend analysis, auditing, and more. For information about connecting to the database from the cluster, see
        TimescaleDB Documentation
      • Promscale provides the translation layer between Prometheus and the database. It allows the Prometheus server to store and retrieve metrics from TimescaleDB, and allows users to use PromQL on Promscale and Prometheus.
      • Prometheus is an open-source systems monitoring and altering stack. It has become the de-facto standard in metric monitoring and is the basis of standards such as OpenMetrics. It allows you to monitor and understand how your infrastructure and applications are performing. Service discovery allows Prometheus to automagically discover components within your Kubernetes cluster that are already emitting metrics.
      • kube-state-metrics exports the metrics related to Kubernetes resources such as the status and count of Kubernetes resources, with visibility of the desired resources and the current resources, as well as the trends in your cluster.
      • Node-Exporter is deployed to export node related metrics such as CPU, memory usage, and others from the Kubernetes cluster.

      Before You Begin

      Note

      This guide was written using
      Kubernetes version 1.23.
      1. Deploy an LKE Cluster. This guide was written using an example node pool with three
        2 GB Linodes. Depending on the workloads you plan to deploy on your cluster, you may consider using Linodes with more available resources.

      2. Install
        Helm 3 to your local environment.

      3. Install
        kubectl to your local environment and
        connect to your cluster.

      4. Create the monitoring namespace on your LKE cluster:

        kubectl create namespace monitoring
        
      5. Add the stable Helm charts repository to your Helm repos:

        helm repo add stable https://charts.helm.sh/stable
        
      6. Update your Helm repositories:

        helm repo update
        

      TOBS Minimal Deployment

      In this section, learn to deploy TOBS for individual/local access with kubectl
      Port-Forward.

      Deploy The Observability Stack

      1. Install a certificate manager for your LKE cluster:

         kubectl apply -f https://github.com/cert-manager/cert-manager/releases/download/v1.8.0/cert-manager.yaml
        
      2. Using Helm, deploy the TOBS release labeled lke-monitor in the monitoring namespace on your LKE cluster:

        helm repo add timescale https://charts.timescale.com/
        helm repo update
        helm install --wait lke-monitor timescale/tobs --namespace monitoring
        
      3. Verify that the Prometheus Operator has been deployed to your LKE cluster and its components are running and ready by checking the pods in the monitoring namespace:

        kubectl -n monitoring get pods
        

        You should see a similar output to the following:

        NAME                                                        READY   STATUS      RESTARTS      AGE
        alertmanager-tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager-0            2/2     Running     0             2m13s
        lke-monitor-connection-secret-j4sdh                         0/1     Completed   0             2m35s
        lke-monitor-grafana-54d979dcf5-tkkgj                        3/3     Running     2 (65s ago)   2m32s
        lke-monitor-grafana-db-swm8g                                0/1     Completed   3             2m35s
        lke-monitor-kube-state-metrics-6bc5c44b9-g8r5g              1/1     Running     0             2m27s
        lke-monitor-prometheus-node-exporter-b4vvg                  1/1     Running     0             2m33s
        lke-monitor-prometheus-node-exporter-bbcnd                  1/1     Running     0             2m34s
        lke-monitor-prometheus-node-exporter-frrfp                  1/1     Running     0             2m26s
        lke-monitor-promlens-569cfbd586-bkhrr                       1/1     Running     0             2m34s
        lke-monitor-promscale-86d574986c-9wj2z                      1/1     Running     4 (64s ago)   2m27s
        lke-monitor-timescaledb-0                                   1/1     Running     0             2m30s
        opentelemetry-operator-controller-manager-8cf5c85c8-krdj5   2/2     Running     0             2m27s
        prometheus-tobs-kube-prometheus-prometheus-0                2/2     Running     0             2m13s
        tobs-kube-prometheus-operator-5b4f674986-55r4k              1/1     Running     0             2m34s

      Access Monitoring Interfaces with Port-Forward

      1. List the services running in the monitoring namespace and review their respective ports:

        kubectl -n monitoring get svc
        

        You should see an output similar to the following:

        NAME                                                        TYPE        CLUSTER-IP       EXTERNAL-IP   PORT(S)                                           AGE
        alertmanager-operated                                       ClusterIP   None             <none>        9093/TCP,9094/TCP,9094/UDP   3m41s
        lke-monitor                                                 ClusterIP   10.128.40.142    <none>        5432/TCP                     4m3s
        lke-monitor-config                                          ClusterIP   None             <none>        8008/TCP                     4m3s
        lke-monitor-grafana                                         ClusterIP   10.128.102.243   <none>        80/TCP                       4m3s
        lke-monitor-kube-state-metrics                              ClusterIP   10.128.208.39    <none>        8080/TCP                     4m3s
        lke-monitor-prometheus-node-exporter                        ClusterIP   10.128.170.88    <none>        9100/TCP                     4m3s
        lke-monitor-promlens                                        ClusterIP   10.128.45.92     <none>        80/TCP                       4m3s
        lke-monitor-promscale-connector                             ClusterIP   10.128.198.88    <none>        9201/TCP,9202/TCP            4m3s
        lke-monitor-replica                                         ClusterIP   10.128.137.189   <none>        5432/TCP                     4m3s
        opentelemetry-operator-controller-manager-metrics-service   ClusterIP   10.128.45.42     <none>        8443/TCP                     4m3s
        opentelemetry-operator-webhook-service                      ClusterIP   10.128.12.89     <none>        443/TCP                      4m3s
        prometheus-operated                                         ClusterIP   None             <none>        9090/TCP                     3m41s
        tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager                           ClusterIP   10.128.33.44     <none>        9093/TCP                     4m3s
        tobs-kube-prometheus-operator                               ClusterIP   10.128.175.39    <none>        443/TCP                      4m3s
        tobs-kube-prometheus-prometheus                             ClusterIP   10.128.106.173   <none>        9090/TCP                     4m3s

        From the above output, the resource services you will access have the corresponding ports:

        Resource Service Name Port
        Prometheus tobs-kube-prometheus-prometheus 9090
        Alertmanager tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager 9093
        Grafana lke-monitor-grafana 80
      2. Use kubectl
        port-forward to open a connection to a service, then access the service’s interface by entering the corresponding address in your web browser:

        Note

        Press control+C on your keyboard to terminate a port-forward process after entering any of the following commands.

        • To provide access to the Prometheus interface at the address 127.0.0.1:9090 in your web browser, enter:

          kubectl -n monitoring \
          port-forward \
          svc/tobs-kube-prometheus-prometheus \
          9090
          
        • To provide access to the Alertmanager interface at the address 127.0.0.1:9093 in your web browser, enter:

          kubectl -n monitoring \
          port-forward \
          svc/tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager  \
          9093
          
        • To provide access to the Grafana interface at the address 127.0.0.1:8081 in your web browser, enter:

          kubectl -n monitoring \
          port-forward \
          svc/lke-monitor-grafana  \
          8081:80
          

          When accessing the Grafana interface, log in as admin. You can get the password using:

          kubectl get secret --namespace monitoring lke-monitor-grafana -o jsonpath="{.data.admin-password}" | base64 --decode ; echo
          

          The Grafana dashboards are accessible at Dashboards > Manage from the left navigation bar.

      TOBS eliminates the need to maintain configuration details for each of the applications, while providing standardized monitoring for the applications running on your cluster.

      More Information

      You may wish to consult the following resources for additional information
      on this topic. While these are provided in the hope that they will be
      useful, please note that we cannot vouch for the accuracy or timeliness of
      externally hosted materials.

      This page was originally published on



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      How to Set Up TOBS, The Observability Stack, for Kubernetes Monitoring


      Introduction

      TOBS, short for The Observability Stack, is a pre-packaged distribution of monitoring tools and dashboard interfaces which can be installed into any existing Kubernetes cluster. It includes many of the most popular open-source observability tools with Prometheus and Grafana as a baseline, including Promlens, TimescaleDB, Alertmanager, and others. Together, these provide a straightforward, maintainable solution for analyzing server traffic and identifying any potential problems with a deployment up to a very large scale.

      TOBS makes use of standard Kubernetes Helm charts in order to configure and update deployments. It can be installed into any Kubernetes cluster, but it can be demonstrated more effectively if you’re running kubectl to manage your cluster from a local machine rather than a remote node. DigitalOcean’s Managed Kubernetes will provide you with a configuration like this by default.

      In this tutorial, you will install TOBS into an existing Kubernetes cluster, and learn how to update, configure, and browse its component dashboards.

      Prerequisites

      To follow this tutorial, you will need:

      Step 1 — Verifying your Kubernetes Configuration

      In order to install TOBS, you should first have a valid Kubernetes configuration set up with kubectl from which you can ping your worker nodes. You can test this by running kubectl get nodes:

      If kubectl is able to connect to your Kubernetes cluster and it’s up and running as expected, this command will return a list of nodes with the Ready status:

      Output

      NAME STATUS ROLES AGE VERSION pool-uqv8a47h0-ul5a7 Ready <none> 22m v1.21.5 pool-uqv8a47h0-ul5am Ready <none> 21m v1.21.5 pool-uqv8a47h0-ul5aq Ready <none> 21m v1.21.5

      If this is successful, you can move on to Step 2. If not, you should review your configuration details for any issues.

      By default, kubectl will look for a file at ~/.kube/config in order to understand your environment. In order to verify that this file exists and contains valid YAML syntax, you can run head on it to view its first several lines, i:

      Output

      apiVersion: v1 clusters: - cluster: certificate-authority-data: …

      If the file does not exist, ensure that you are logged in as the same user that you configured Kubernetes with. ~/ paths reflect individual users’ home directories, and Kubernetes configurations are saved per-user by default.

      If you are using DigitalOcean’s Managed Kubernetes, ensure that you have run the doctl kubernetes cluster kubeconfig save command after setting up a cluster so that your local machine can authenticate to it. This will create a ~/.kube/config file:

      • doctl kubernetes cluster kubeconfig save your-cluster-name

      If you are using this machine to access multiple clusters, you should review the Kubernetes documentation on using environment variables and multiple configuration files in order to avoid conflicts. After configuring your kubectl environment, you can move on to installing TOBS in the next step.

      Step 2 — Installing TOBS and Testing Your Endpoints

      TOBS includes the following components:

      • Prometheus is a time series database and monitoring tool that works by polling metrics endpoints and scraping and processing the data exposed by these endpoints. It allows you to query this data using PromQL, a time series data query language.
      • Alertmanager, usually deployed alongside Prometheus, forms the alerting layer of the stack, handling alerts generated by Prometheus and deduplicating, grouping, and routing them to integrations like email or PagerDuty. To learn more about Alertmanager, consult the Prometheus documentation on alerting.
      • Grafana is a data visualization and analytics tool that allows you to build dashboards and graphs for your metrics data.
      • kube-state-metrics is an add-on agent that listens to the Kubernetes API server and generates metrics about the state of Kubernetes objects like Deployments and Pods. These metrics are served as plaintext on HTTP endpoints and consumed by Prometheus.
      • Lastly is node-exporter, a Prometheus exporter that runs on cluster nodes and provides OS and hardware metrics like CPU and memory usage to Prometheus. These metrics are also served as plaintext on HTTP endpoints and consumed by Prometheus.

      In order to install TOBS, you first need to run the TOBS installer on your control-plane. This will set up the tobs command and configuration directories. As mentioned in the prerequisites, the tobs command is only designed to work on Linux/macOS/BSD systems (like the official Kubernetes binaries), so if you have been using Windows up to now, you should be working in the Windows Subsystem for Linux environment.

      Retrieve and run the TOBS installer:

      • curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -sSLf https://tsdb.co/install-tobs-sh |sh

      Output

      tobs 0.7.0 was successfully installed 🎉 Binary is available at /root/.local/bin/tobs.

      You can now push TOBS to your Kubernetes cluster. This is done by a one-liner using your newly-provided tobs command:

      This will generate several lines of output and may take a few moments. Depending on your exact version of Kubernetes, there may be several warnings in the output, but you can ignore these as long as you eventually receive the Welcome to tobs message:

      Output

      WARNING: Using a generated self-signed certificate for TLS access to TimescaleDB. This should only be used for development and demonstration purposes. To use a signed certificate, use the "--tls-timescaledb-cert" and "--tls-timescaledb-key" flags when issuing the tobs install command. Creating TimescaleDB tobs-certificate secret Creating TimescaleDB tobs-credentials secret skipping to create TimescaleDB s3 backup secret as backup option is disabled. 2022/01/10 11:25:34 Transport: unhandled response frame type *http.http2UnknownFrame 2022/01/10 11:25:35 Transport: unhandled response frame type *http.http2UnknownFrame 2022/01/10 11:25:35 Transport: unhandled response frame type *http.http2UnknownFrame Installing The Observability Stack 2022/01/10 11:25:37 Transport: unhandled response frame type *http.http2UnknownFrame W0110 11:25:55.438728 75479 warnings.go:70] policy/v1beta1 PodSecurityPolicy is deprecated in v1.21+, unavailable in v1.25+ W0110 11:25:55.646392 75479 warnings.go:70] policy/v1beta1 PodSecurityPolicy is deprecated in v1.21+, unavailable in v1.25+ … 👋🏽 Welcome to tobs, The Observability Stack for Kubernetes …

      The output from this point onward will contain instructions for connecting to each of Prometheus, TimescaleDB, PromLens, and Grafana’s web endpoints in your browser. It is reproduced in full below for reference:

      Output

      ############################################################################### 🔥 PROMETHEUS NOTES: ############################################################################### Prometheus can be accessed via port 9090 on the following DNS name from within your cluster: tobs-kube-prometheus-prometheus.default.svc.cluster.local Get the Prometheus server URL by running these commands in the same shell: tobs prometheus port-forward The Prometheus alertmanager can be accessed via port 9093 on the following DNS name from within your cluster: tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager.default.svc.cluster.local Get the Alertmanager URL by running these commands in the same shell: export POD_NAME=$(kubectl get pods --namespace default -l "app=alertmanager,alertmanager=tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager" -o jsonpath="{.items[0].metadata.name}") kubectl --namespace default port-forward $POD_NAME 9093 WARNING! Persistence is disabled on AlertManager. You will lose your data when the AlertManager pod is terminated. ############################################################################### 🐯 TIMESCALEDB NOTES: ############################################################################### TimescaleDB can be accessed via port 5432 on the following DNS name from within your cluster: tobs.default.svc.cluster.local To get your password for superuser run: tobs timescaledb get-password -U <user> To connect to your database, chose one of these options: 1. Run a postgres pod and connect using the psql cli: tobs timescaledb connect -U <user> 2. Directly execute a psql session on the master node tobs timescaledb connect -m ############################################################################### 🧐 PROMLENS NOTES: ############################################################################### PromLens is a PromQL query builder, analyzer, and visualizer. You can access PromLens via a local browser by executing: tobs promlens port-forward Then you can point your browser to http://127.0.0.1:8081/. ############################################################################### 📈 GRAFANA NOTES: ############################################################################### 1. The Grafana server can be accessed via port 80 on the following DNS name from within your cluster: tobs-grafana.default.svc.cluster.local You can access grafana locally by executing: tobs grafana port-forward Then you can point your browser to http://127.0.0.1:8080/. 2. The 'admin' user password can be retrieved by: tobs grafana get-password 3. You can reset the admin user password with grafana-cli from inside the pod. tobs grafana change-password <password-you-want-to-set>

      Each of this is provided with a DNS name internal to your cluster so that they can be accessed from any of your worker nodes, e.g. tobs-kube-prometheus-alertmanager.default.svc.cluster.local for Prometheus. In addition, there is a port forwarding command configured for each that allows you to access them from a local web browser.

      In a new terminal, run tobs prometheus port-forward:

      • tobs prometheus port-forward

      This will occupy the terminal as long as the port forwarding process is active. You can press Ctrl+C to gracefully quit a blocking process such as this one when you want to stop forwarding the port. Next, in a web browser, go to the URL http://127.0.0.1:9090/. You should see the full Prometheus interface running and producing metrics from your cluster:

      Prometheus welcome

      You can do the same for Grafana, which is accessible at http://127.0.0.1:8080/ as long as port forwarding is active in another process. First, you’ll need to use the get-password command provided by the installer output:

      • tobs grafana get-password

      Output

      your-grafana-password

      You can then use this password to log into the Grafana interface by running its port forwarding command and opening http://127.0.0.1:8080/ in your browser.

      • tobs grafana port-forward

      Grafana welcome

      You now have a working TOBS stack running in your Kubernetes cluster. You can refer to the individual components’ documentation in order to learn their respective features. In the last step of this tutorial, you’ll learn how to make updates to the TOBS configuration itself.

      Step 3 — Editing TOBS Configurations and Upgrading

      TOBS’ configuration contains some parameters for the individual applications in the stack, as well as some parameters for the TOBS deployment itself. It is generated and stored as a Kubernetes Helm chart. You can output your current configuration by running tobs helm show-values. However, this will output the entire long configuration to your terminal, which can be difficult to read. You can instead redirect the output to a file with the .yaml extension, because Helm charts are all valid YAML syntax:

      • tobs helm show-values > values.yaml

      The file contents will look like this:

      ~/values.yaml

      2022/01/10 11:56:37 Transport: unhandled response frame type *http.http2UnknownFrame
      # Values for configuring the deployment of TimescaleDB
      # The charts README is at:
      #    https://github.com/timescale/timescaledb-kubernetes/tree/master/charts/timescaledb-single
      # Check out the various configuration options (administration guide) at:
      #    https://github.com/timescale/timescaledb-kubernetes/blob/master/charts/timescaledb-single/admin-guide.md
      cli: false
      
      # Override the deployment namespace
      namespaceOverride: ""
      …
      

      You can review the additional parameters available for TOBS’ configuration by reading the TOBS documentation

      If you ever modify this file in order to update your deployment, you can re-install TOBS over itself using the updated configuration. Just pass the -f option to the tobs install command with the YAML file as an additional argument:

      • tobs install -f values.yaml

      Finally, you can upgrade TOBS with the following command:

      This performs the equivalent of a helm upgrade by fetching the newest upstream chart.

      Conclusion

      In this tutorial, you learned to deploy and configure TOBS, The Observability Stack, on an existing Kubernetes cluster. TOBS is particularly helpful because it eliminates the need to individually maintain configuration details for each of these apps, while providing standardized monitoring for the applications running on your cluster.

      Next, you might want to learn how to use Cert-Manager to handle HTTPS ingress to your Kubernetes cluster.



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