Tag Archives: tkgs

VMC Tanzu Header

VMware Cloud on AWS Deep Dive – Activating, Deploying and Using the managed Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service

In this blog post I’m going to deep dive into the end-to-end activation, deployment, and consuming of the managed Tanzu Services (Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service > TKGS) within a VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC. I’ll deploy a Tanzu Cluster inside a vSphere Namespace, and then deploy my trusty Pac-Man application and make it Publicly Accessible.

Previously to this capability, you would need to deploy Tanzu Kubernetes Grid to VMC, which was fully supported, as a Management Cluster and then additional Tanzu Clusters for your workloads. (See Terminology explanations here). This was a fully support option, however it did not provide you all the integrated features you could have by using the TKGS as part of your On-Premises vSphere environment.

What is Tanzu Services on VMC?

Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service is a managed service built into the VMware Cloud on AWS vSphere environment.

This feature brings the availability of the integrated Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service inside of vSphere itself, by coupling the platform together, you can easily deploy new Tanzu clusters, use the administration and authentication of vCenter, as well as provide governance and policies from vCenter as well.

Note: VMware Cloud on AWS does not enable activation of Tanzu Kubernetes Grid by default. Contact your account team for more information. 

Note2: In VMware Cloud on AWS, the Tanzu workload control plane can be activated only through the VMC Console.
But wait, couldn’t I already install a Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Cluster onto VMC anyway?

Tanzu Kubernetes Grid is a multi-cloud solution that deploys and manages Kubernetes clusters on your selected cloud provider. Previously to the vSphere integrated Tanzu offering for VMC that we are discussing today, you would deploy the general TKG option to your SDDC vCenter.

What differences should I know about this Tanzu Services offering in VMC versus the other Tanzu Kubernetes offering?
  • When Activated, Tanzu Kubernetes Grid for VMware Cloud on AWS is pre-provisioned with a VMC-specific content library that you cannot modify.
  • Tanzu Kubernetes Grid for VMware Cloud on AWS does not support vSphere Pods.
  • Creation of Tanzu Supervisor Namespace templates is not supported by VMware Cloud on AWS.
  • vSphere namespaces for Kubernetes releases are configured automatically during Tanzu Kubernetes Grid activation.
Activating Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service in a VMC SDDC
Reminder: Tanzu Services Activation capabilities are not activated by default. Contact your account team for more information.

Within your VMC Console, you can either go via the Launchpad method or via the SDDC inventory item. I’ll cover both:

  • Click on Launchpad
  • Open the Kubernetes Tab
  • Click Learn More

VMC - Launchpad - Kubernetes

  • Select the Journey Tab
  • Under Stage 2 – Activate > Click Get Started

VMC - Launchpad - Kubernetes - Journey - Get started

Alternatively, from the SDDC object in the Inventory view

  • Click Actions
  • Click “Activate Tanzu Kubernetes Grid”

VMC - Inventory - SDDC - Activate Tanzu Kubernetes Grid

You will now be shown a status dialog, as VMC checks to ensure that Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service can be activated in your cluster.

This will check you have the correct configurations and compute resources available.

VMC - Inventory - SDDC - Activate Tanzu Kubernetes Grid - Checking cluster resources

If the check is successful, you will now be presented the configuration wizard. Essentially, all you must provide is your configuration for four networks. Continue reading VMware Cloud on AWS Deep Dive – Activating, Deploying and Using the managed Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service

vRealize Automation - VMware Tanzu Header

Deploying vSphere with Tanzu Clusters using vRA and Cluster Plans

In this blog post I am covering the vRealize Automation native feature that allows you to deploy Tanzu clusters via the Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service of vCenter.

If you have been following my posts in 2021, I wrote a blog and presented as part of VMworld on how to deploy Tanzu Clusters using vRA Code Stream, due to the lack of native integration.

Now you have either option!

  • A working vSphere with Tanzu setup
  • Create a Supervisor Namespace that we can deploy clusters into
    • vRA requires an existing Supervisor namespace to deploy clusters into, despite the separate capability that vRA can create Supervisor namespaces via a Cloud Template
    • This namespace needs a VM Class and Storage Policy to be attached.
Configuring the vRealize Automation Infrastructure settings
  • Create a Cloud Account for your vCenter
    • Ensure that once the data collection has run, the account shows “Available for Kubernetes deployment”

vRA - Cloud Account - vCenter - Available for Kubernetes deployment

  • Create a new Kubernetes Zone
    • Select your Cloud Account linked vCenter
    • Provide a name
  • Select the Provisioning tab

vRA - New Kubernetes Zone

  • Click to add compute to the zone.
    • For the Tanzu Cluster deployment, this needs to be into existing Supervisor namespaces (as in the pre-reqs).
    • Add your existing Supervisor namespaces you are interested in using

You can add the Supervisor cluster itself, but it won’t be used in this feature walk-through. If you have multiple Supervisor namespaces, I recommend tagging them in this view. So that you can use it as a constraint tag in the Cloud Template.

vRA - New Kubernetes Zone - Provisioning

  • Click Projects, select your chosen project
  • Select the Kubernetes Provisioning tab
  • Add your Kubernetes Zone

vRA - Projects - Kubernetes Provisioning

  • Click Cluster Plans under Configure heading
  • Create a new Cluster Plan with your specification
    • Select the vCenter Account it will apply to
    • Provide a name (a-z,A-Z,0-9,-)
      • The UI will allow you to input characters that are not supported on the Cloud Template for name property
    • Select your Kubernetes version to deploy
    • Number of Nodes for Control and Worker nodes
    • The Machine Class (VM Class on the Supervisor Namespace) for each Node Type
      • You will be able to select from the VM classes added at the Supervisor namespace in vCenter
    • Select the Storage Class for each Node Type
    • Select the default PVC storage class in the cluster
    • Enable/disable including all Supervisor Namespace storage classes
    • Choose either default networking deployment for clusters or provide your own specification.

vRA - Cluster Plans

Regarding the network settings, below in the image I have highlighted how the Tanzu Kubernetes Grid Service v1alpha1 API YAML format for a cluster creation request maps across to the settings expected by vRA.

You can find further examples here.

vRA - Cluster Plans - Network Settings

  • Create a Cloud Template
  • Place the “K8s Cluster” resource object on your canvas
  • Configure the properties as needed
    • The workers property will override the workers number in the Cluster Plan

Below is the example I used.

formatVersion: 1
    type: string
    title: Cluster_name
    default: vra-test
    type: integer
    title: No. of Workers
    default: 1
    type: Cloud.Tanzu.Cluster
      name: '${input.cluster_name}'
      plan: small-v120
      workers: '${input.workers}'

Once you are happy, deploy the Cloud Template.

vRA - Cloud Template - type cloud.tanzu.cluster

Successful Deployment of a Tanzu Cluster

In the below screenshots, you can see the completed deployment.

  • Clicking on the Resource Object, you have the ability to download a Kubeconfig file to access the cluster.

vRA - Deployment completed - Resource Object details

  • Viewing the History Tab will show you details about the creation.

vRA - Deployment completed

  • Clicking on Request Details Tab will show you the user inputs take at the time of deployment.

vRA - Deployment completed - Request Details

If you look at the “Infrastructure” tab and the configuration under Kubernetes, you will see this cluster is onboarded into vRA. You can further use other cloud templates against this cluster to create Kubernetes namespaces within the cluster, for example.

vRA - Infrastructure - Kubernetes - Cluster

Finally, within my vCenter you can see my deployed cluster, to the Supervisor Namespace I specified in the Kubernetes Zone.

vRA - Deployed Tanzu cluster in vCenter Supervisor Namespace


Dean Lewis

VMware Tanzu Header

Understanding the VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Terminology

It’s not uncommon for me to see the question asking for an explanation of VMware Tanzu Kubernetes terminology and differences between similar named products. As per the below tweet. This is my blog post to address the Tanzu Kubernetes terminology and use.

Twitter thread asking about TKGm and TKGs

First, we’ll break down the high level names and products. Then move into Tanzu Kubernetes products.

What is VMware Tanzu?

VMware Tanzu is a brand name covering VMware’s modern applications suite of products, just like vRealize is the suite name for VMware’s cloud management products.

What products are covered by the VMware Tanzu brand?

Continue reading Understanding the VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Terminology