Running Gerrit on Kubernetes using Minikube

To test Gerrit on Kubernetes locally, a one-node cluster can be set up using Minikube. Minikube provides basic Kubernetes functionality and allows to quickly deploy and evaluate a Kubernetes deployment. This tutorial will guide through setting up Minikube to deploy the gerrit and gerrit-replica helm charts to it. Note, that due to limited compute resources on a single local machine and the restricted functionality of Minikube, the full functionality of the charts might not be usable.

Installing Kubectl and Minikube

To use Minikube, a hypervisor is needed. A good non-commercial solution is HyperKit. The Minikube project provides binaries to install the driver:

curl -LO \
  && sudo install -o root -g wheel -m 4755 docker-machine-driver-hyperkit /usr/local/bin/

To manage Kubernetes clusters, the Kubectl CLI tool will be needed. A detailed guide how to do that for all supported OSs can be found here. On OSX hombrew can be used for installation:

brew install kubernetes-cli

Finally, Minikube can be installed. Download the latest binary here. To install it on OSX, run:

curl -Lo minikube$VERSION/minikube-darwin-amd64 && \
  chmod +x minikube && \
  sudo cp minikube /usr/local/bin/ && \
  rm minikube

Starting a Minikube cluster

For a more detailed overview over the features of Minikube refer to the official documentation. If a hypervisor driver other than virtual box (e.g. hyperkit) is used, set the --vm-driver option accordingly:

minikube config set vm-driver hyperkit

The gerrit and gerrit-replica charts are configured to work with the default resource limits configured for minikube (2 cpus and 2Gi RAM). If more resources are desired (e.g. to speed up deployment startup or for more resource intensive tests), configure the resource limits using:

minikube config set memory 4096
minikube config set cpus 4

To install a full Gerrit and Gerrit replica setup with reasonable startup times, Minikube will need about 9.5 GB of RAM and 3-4 CPUs! But the more the better.

To start a Minikube cluster simply run:

minikube start

Starting up the cluster will take a while. The installation should automatically configure kubectl to connect to the Minikube cluster. Run the following command to test whether the cluster is up:

kubectl get nodes

minikube   Ready    master   1h    v1.14.2

The helm-charts use ingresses, which can be used in Minikube by enabling the ingress addon:

minikube addons enable ingress

Since for testing there will probably no usable host names configured to point to the minikube installation, the traffic to the hostnames configured in the Ingress definition needs to be redirected to Minikube by editing the /etc/hosts- file, adding a line containing the Minikube IP and a whitespace-delimited list of all the hostnames:

echo "$(minikube ip) primary.gerrit backend.gerrit replica.gerrit" | sudo tee -a /etc/hosts

The host names (e.g. primary.gerrit) are the defaults, when using the values.yaml files provided as and example for minikube. Change them accordingly, if a different one is chosen. This will only redirect traffic from the computer running Minikube.

To see whether all cluster components are ready, run:

kubectl get pods --all-namespaces

The status of all components should be Ready. The kubernetes dashboard giving an overview over all cluster components, can be opened by executing:

minikube dashboard

Install helm

Helm is needed to install and manage the helm charts. To install the helm client on your local machine (running OSX), run:

brew install kubernetes-helm

A guide for all suported OSs can be found here.

Start an NFS-server

The helm-charts need a volume with ReadWriteMany access mode to store git-repositories. This guide will use the nfs-server-provisioner chart to provide NFS-volumes directly in the cluster. A basic configuration file for the nfs-server- provisioner-chart is provided in the supplements-directory. It can be installed by running:

helm install nfs \
  stable/nfs-server-provisioner \
  -f ./supplements/nfs.minikube.values.yaml

Installing the gerrit helm chart

A configuration file to configure the gerrit chart is provided at ./supplements/gerrit.minikube.values.yaml. To install the gerrit chart on Minikube, run:

helm install gerrit \
  ./helm-charts/gerrit \
  -f ./supplements/gerrit.minikube.values.yaml

Startup may take some time, especially when allowing only a small amount of resources to the containers. Check progress with kubectl get pods -w until it says that the pod gerrit-gerrit-stateful-set-0 is Running. Then use kubectl logs -f gerrit-gerrit-stateful-set-0 to follow the startup process of Gerrit until a line like this shows that Gerrit is ready:

[2019-06-04 15:24:25,914] [main] INFO : Gerrit Code Review 2.16.8-86-ga831ebe687 ready

To open Gerrit's UI, run:

open http://primary.gerrit

Installing the gerrit-replica helm chart

A custom configuration file to configure the gerrit-replica chart is provided at ./supplements/gerrit-replica.minikube.values.yaml. Install it by running:

helm install gerrit-replica \
  ./helm-charts/gerrit-replica \
  -f ./supplements/gerrit-replica.minikube.values.yaml

The replica will start up, which can be followed by running:

kubectl logs -f gerrit-replica-gerrit-replica-deployment-<id>

Replication of repositories has to be started on the Gerrit, e.g. by making a change in the respective repositories. Only then previous changes to the repositories will be available on the replica.


Shut down minikube:

minikube stop

Delete the minikube cluster:

minikube delete

Remove the line added to /etc/hosts. If Minikube is restarted, the cluster will get a new IP and the /etc/hosts-entry has to be adjusted.