Istio 1.10 Upgrade Notes

Important changes to consider when upgrading to Istio 1.10.0.

May 18, 2021

When you upgrade from Istio 1.9 to Istio 1.10, you need to consider the changes on this page. These notes detail the changes which purposefully break backwards compatibility with Istio 1.9. The notes also mention changes which preserve backwards compatibility while introducing new behavior. Changes are only included if the new behavior would be unexpected to a user of Istio 1.9.

Inbound Forwarding Configuration

The behavior of inbound forwarding has been modified for Istio 1.10. This change is enabled by default in Istio 1.10 and it can be disabled by configuring the PILOT_ENABLE_INBOUND_PASSTHROUGH=false environment variable in Istiod.

Previously, requests would be forwarded to localhost. This leads to two important differences compared to running applications without Istio:

The latter is a common source of friction when adopting Istio, in particular with stateful services where this is common.

The new behavior instead forwards the request as is. This matches the behavior a user would see without Istio installed. However, as a result, applications that have come to rely on localhost being exposed externally by Istio may stop working.

To help detect these situations, we have added a check to find pods that will be impacted. You can run the istioctl experimental precheck command to get a report of any pods binding to localhost on a port exposed in a Service. This command is available in Istio 1.10+. Without action, these ports will no longer be accessible upon upgrade.

$ istioctl experimental precheck
Error [IST0143] (Pod echo-local-849647c5bd-g9wxf.default) Port 443 is exposed in a Service but listens on localhost. It will not be exposed to other pods.
Error [IST0143] (Pod echo-local-849647c5bd-g9wxf.default) Port 7070 is exposed in a Service but listens on localhost. It will not be exposed to other pods.
Error: Issues found when checking the cluster. Istio may not be safe to install or upgrade.
See for more information about causes and resolutions.

Regardless of Istio version, the behavior can be explicitly controlled by the Sidecar. For example, to configure the 9080 port to explicitly be sent to localhost:

kind: Sidecar
  name: ratings
      app: ratings
  - port:
      number: 9080
      protocol: HTTP
      name: http

Sidecar Injector Changes

The logic to determine if a pod requires sidecar injection or not has been updated to make use of new Kubernetes features. Previously, the webhook was triggered at a coarse grain level, selecting any pods in a namespace with a matching istio-injection=enabled label.

This has two limitations:

These limitations have both been resolved. As a result, additional pods may be injected that were not in previous versions, if they exist in a namespace without an istio-injection label set but have the annotation set to true on the pod. This is expected to be an uncommon case, so for most users there will be no behavioral changes to existing pods.

If this behavior is not desired, it can be temporarily disabled with --set values.sidecarInjectorWebhook.useLegacySelectors=true. This option will be removed in future releases.

See the updated Automatic sidecar injection documentation for more information.

Multicluster .global stub domain

As part of the fixes for ISTIO-SECURITY-2021-006, the previously deprecated .global stub domain for multicluster will no longer work.

This change can be temporarily disabled if desired by setting the environment variable PILOT_ENABLE_LEGACY_AUTO_PASSTHROUGH=true in Istiod. However, this is strongly discouraged, as it negates the fix to ISTIO-SECURITY-2021-006.

Please follow the Multicluster Installation documentation for more information.