Managing Gateways with Multiple Revisions [experimental]

With a single IstioOperator CR, any gateways defined in the CR (including the istio-ingressgateway installed in the default profile) are upgraded in place, even when the canary control plane method is used. This is undesirable because gateways are a critical component affecting application uptime. They should be upgraded last, after the new control and data plane versions are verified to be working.

This guide describes the recommended way to upgrade gateways by defining and managing them in a separate IstioOperator CR, separate from the one used to install and manage the control plane.

Istioctl

This section covers the installation and upgrade of a separate control plane and gateway using istioctl. The example demonstrates how to upgrade Istio 1.8.0 to 1.8.1 using canary upgrade, with gateways being managed separately from the control plane.

Installation with istioctl

  1. Ensure that the main IstioOperator CR has a name and does not install a gateway:

    # filename: control-plane.yaml
    apiVersion: install.istio.io/v1alpha1
    kind: IstioOperator
    metadata:
      name: control-plane # REQUIRED
    spec:
      profile: default
      components:
        ingressGateways:
          - name: istio-ingressgateway
            # MUST BE DISABLED
            enabled: false
    
  2. Create a separate IstioOperator CR for the gateway(s), ensuring that it has a name and has the empty profile:

    # filename: gateways.yaml
    apiVersion: install.istio.io/v1alpha1
    kind: IstioOperator
    metadata:
      name: gateways # REQUIRED
    spec:
      profile: empty # REQUIRED
      components:
        ingressGateways:
          - name: istio-ingressgateway
            enabled: true
    
  3. Install the CRs:

    $ istio-1.8.0/bin/istioctl install -n istio-system -f control-plane.yaml --revision 1-8-0
    $ istio-1.8.0/bin/istioctl install -n istio-system -f gateways.yaml --revision 1-8-0
    

Istioctl install and the operator track resource ownership through labels for both the revision and owning CR name. Only resources whose name and revision labels match the IstioOperator CR passed to istioctl install/operator will be affected by any changes to the CR - all other resources in the cluster will be ignored. It is important to make sure that each IstioOperator installs components that do not overlap with another IstioOperator CR, otherwise the two CR’s will cause controllers or istioctl commands to interfere with each other.

Upgrade with istioctl

Let’s assume that the target version is 1.8.1.

  1. Download the Istio 1.8.1 release and use the istioctl from that release to install the Istio 1.8.1 control plane:

    $ istio-1.8.1/bin/istioctl install -f control-plane.yaml --revision 1-8-1
    

    (Refer to the canary upgrade docs for more details on steps 2-4.)

  2. Verify that the control plane is functional.

  3. Label workload namespaces with istio.io/rev=1-8-1 and restart the workloads.

  4. Verify that the workloads are injected with the new proxy version and the cluster is functional.

  5. At this point, the ingress gateway is still 1.8.0. You should see the following pods running:

    $ kubectl get pods -n istio-system --show-labels
    
    NAME                                    READY   STATUS    RESTARTS   AGE   LABELS
    istio-ingressgateway-65f8bdd46c-d49wf   1/1     Running   0          21m   service.istio.io/canonical-revision=1-8-0 ...
    istiod-1-8-0-67f9b9b56-r22t5            1/1     Running   0          22m   istio.io/rev=1-8-0 ...
    istiod-1-8-1-75dfd7d494-xhmbb           1/1     Running   0          21s   istio.io/rev=1-8-1 ...
    

    As a last step, upgrade any gateways in the cluster to the new version:

    $ istio-1.8.1/bin/istioctl install -f gateways.yaml --revision 1-8-1
    
  6. Delete the 1.8.1 version of the control plane:

    $ istio-1.8.1/bin/istioctl uninstall --revision 1-8-0
    

Operator

This section covers the installation and upgrade of a separate control plane and gateway using the Istio operator. The example demonstrates how to upgrade Istio 1.8.0 to 1.8.1 using canary upgrade, with gateways being managed separately from the control plane.

Installation with operator

  1. Ensure that the main IstioOperator CR has a name and revision, and does not install a gateway:

    # filename: control-plane-1-8-0.yaml
    apiVersion: install.istio.io/v1alpha1
    kind: IstioOperator
    metadata:
      name: control-plane-1-8-0 # REQUIRED
    spec:
      profile: default
      revision: 1-8-0 # REQUIRED
      components:
        ingressGateways:
          - name: istio-ingressgateway
            # MUST BE DISABLED
            enabled: false
    
  2. Create a separate IstioOperator CR for the gateway(s), ensuring that it has a name and has the empty profile:

    # filename: gateways.yaml
    apiVersion: install.istio.io/v1alpha1
    kind: IstioOperator
    metadata:
      name: gateways # REQUIRED
    spec:
      profile: empty # REQUIRED
      revision: 1-8-0 # REQUIRED
      components:
        ingressGateways:
          - name: istio-ingressgateway
            enabled: true
    
  3. Apply the files to the cluster with the following commands:

    $ kubectl apply -n istio-system -f control-plane-1-8-0.yaml
    $ kubectl apply -n istio-system -f gateways.yaml
    
  4. Install the Istio operator into the cluster:

    $ istio-1.8.0/bin/istioctl operator init --revision 1-8-0
    

Verify that the operator and Istio control plane are installed and running.

Upgrade with operator

Let’s assume that the target version is 1.8.1.

  1. Download the Istio 1.8.1 release and use the istioctl from that release to install the Istio 1.8.1 operator:

    $ istio-1.8.1/bin/istioctl operator init  --revision 1-8-1
    
  2. Copy the control plane CR from the install step above as control-plane-1-8-1.yaml. Change all instances of 1-8-0 to 1-8-1 in the files.

  3. Apply the new file to the cluster:

    $ kubectl apply -n istio-system -f control-plane-1-8-1.yaml
    
  4. Verify that two versions of istiod are running in the cluster. It may take several minutes for the operator to install the new control plane and for it to be in a running state.

  5. Refer to the canary upgrade docs for more details on rolling over workloads to the new Istio version:

    • Label workload namespaces with istio.io/rev=1-8-1 and restart the workloads.
    • Verify that the workloads are injected with the new proxy version and the cluster is functional.
  6. Upgrade the gateway to the new revision. Edit the gateways.yaml file from the installation step to change the revision from 1-8-0 to 1-8-1 and re-apply the file:

    $ kubectl apply -n istio-system -f gateways.yaml
    
  7. Perform a rolling restart of the gateway deployment:

    $ kubectl rollout restart deployment -n istio-system istio-ingressgateway
    
  8. Verify that the gateway is running at version 1.8.1.

  9. Uninstall the old control plane:

    $ kubectl delete istiooperator -n istio-system control-plane-1-8-0
    
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