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KodeCloud CKAD Volumes

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  • We first define a volumes field parallel to the containers field.
    • Here we define all the volumes that will be used in the containers and give them names.

- name: data-volume
    path: /data # location on the host
    type: DirectoryOrCreate 
- Any files created in the volume would be stored in the directory /data on the host. - Once the volume is created to access it from the container we mount the volume to a directory inside the container. - We use the volumeMounts field in each container to mount the /data volume to the directory /opt within the container

- mountPath: /opt
  name: data-volume
  • Very simple yaml file to mount a directory from host (node) to pod.

    • attachments/Pasted image 20221002160808.jpg
    • The above yaml files states that the contents inside the /opt directory of container should be mounted to a volume named data-volume whose storage location is /data on the host node.
  • We have different volume storage options.

    • We used the hostPath option to configure a directory on the host as a storage space for the volume.
      • This works fine for a single node but it is not recommended for a multi node cluster.
    • k8s supports different types of storage solutions like NFS, public cloud solutions, etc.
    • For example to use AWS EBS as the storage volume we replace the hostPath field with awsElasticBlockStore field.
      • The volume storage will now be on AWS EBS.
- name: data-volume
    volumeID: <volume-id>
    fsType: ext4

Persistent Volumes

  • In the above examples we created volumes in the pod definition file. So all the configuration information for the volume goes within the pod definition file.
  • When we have a large environment with a lot of pods the users would have to configure storage for each pod.

    • The users would have to configure storage on all pod definition files.
    • Every time a change is made the user would have to make the changes on all the pod definition files.
  • Instead we would like to manage storage more centrally.

    • We would like it to be configured in a way where the administrator can create a large pool of storage and then have users carve our pieces from it as required.
A persistent volume (PV) is a cluster wide pool of storage volumes configured by an administrator to be used by users while deploying the application.

Users can select storage from this pool using persistent volume claim (PVC). attachments/Pasted image 20221002162448.jpg

  • Just like the nodes in a cluster, PV is a resource in the cluster.

  • Simple persistent volume yaml file

    apiVersion: vl
    kind: PersistentVolume
        name: pv-vol1
        - ReadWriteOnce
            storage: 1Gi
        # not recommended in production
            path: /tmp/data

  • Access modes define how a volume should be mounted on the host (node). Access Modes of your PersistentVolume affect wether all your pods can access the volume concurrently from different Nodes or not.

    • ReadOnlyMany (ROX)
    • ReadWriteMany (RWX)
    • ReadWriteOnce (RWO): The volume can be mounted as read-write by a single node. ReadWriteOnce access mode still can allow multiple pods to access the volume when the pods are running on the same node.
All these access modes may not be supported by all the storage classes.
  • We can replace the hostPath option with awsElasticBlockStore or any other supported storage types.

  • Listing the persistent volumes: k get persistentvolume or k get pv

PVs are not bound to any name space so k get pv will list all the PVs.

Persistent Volume Claims

  • Once the PVCs are created k8s binds them to the PV.
  • Every PVC is bound to a single PV.
    • During the binding k8s tries to find a PV that has sufficient capacity as requested by the PVC and any other request properties like access modes, volume mode, storage class etc.
    • If there are multiple possible matches for a single claim and we would specifically like to use a specific volume we can use selectors to bind to the right volume.
A smaller claim may get bound to a larger volume if all the other criteria matches and there are no other options.

There is a 1 to 1 relationship between claims and volumes so no other claims can utilise the remaining capacity in the volume. attachments/Pasted image 20221002164442.jpg
attachments/Pasted image 20221002164324.jpg
In the above image we see that we only needed the 500Mi but we got 1Gi

  • If there are no volumes available then PVC will remain in a pending state until newer volumes are made available to the cluster.

  • Simple PVC

kind: PersistentVolumeClaim 
apiVersion: v1 
    name: claim-log-1 
    - ReadWriteOnce 
        storage: 50Mi
  • View the claims: k get persistentvolumeclaim or k get pvc
Once you create a PVC use it in a POD/Deployment definition file by specifying the PVC Claim name under persistentVolumeClaim section in the volumes section.

apiVersion: v1
kind: Pod
  name: mypod
    - name: myfrontend
      image: nginx
      - mountPath: "/var/www/html"
        name: mypd
    - name: mypd
        claimName: myclaim
- The volumeMounts part in the container remains the same. - We specify the mountPath and the name of the volume. - In the volumes section we use the persistentVolumeClaim option instead of using the hostPath option. - We use the claimName to use a specific claim.

  • Pods access storage by using the claim as a volume.
  • Claims must exist in the same namespace as the Pod using the claim.
  • The cluster finds the claim in the Pod's namespace and uses it to get the PersistentVolume backing the claim.
  • The volume is then mounted to the host and into the Pod.
If there is an access mode mismatch then a PVC cannot be bound to a PV.

Deleting PVCs

  • We can choose what happens to the underlying PV when PVCs are deleted.
  • By default it is set to Retain.
    • The PV will remain until it is manually deleted by the administrator.
    • It is not available for reuse by any other claims.
    • In short PV is not deleted but PV is not available.
  • It can be deleted automatically using the Delete option.
    • As soon as the PVC is deleted PV will also be deleted.
    • This frees up storage on the end storage device.
  • In Recycle option the data on the volume is scrapped and it is then made available to other claims.
If we are deleting a PVC and it is being used by a pod then it will be stuck in terminating state.

To delete the PVC you must terminate the pod.

Summary PV, PVC & Pods

attachments/Pasted image 20221002202326.jpg

Storage Classes

  • Before PV is created we should have created the storage on some storage platform we are using.

    • This has to be done every time before we create a PV.
    • This is known as static provisioning.
  • With storage classes we can define a provisioner such as google storage that can automatically provision storage on google cloud and attach that to pods when claim is made.

    • This is known as dynamic provisioning of volumes.
  • We do this by creating a storage class object.

  • Simple storage class definition file

    kind: StorageClass
        name: google-storage

With storage classes we no longer need to create a PV since any associated storage is going to be created automatically by the storage class.

A PV is created but we don't create it and it happens automatically.

  • For PVC to use a storage class we specify it in the PVC definition. This is how PVC knows which storage class to use.

    • attachments/Pasted image 20221002203346.jpg
  • We have a lot of different provisioners for storage classes.

  • It is known as a storage class since we can create different classes of service.

    • For example a silver class with normal disk, a gold class with ssd and a platinum class with ssd and replication
    • Next time we create a PVC we can simply specify the class of storage needed for the volumes.
    • attachments/Pasted image 20221002203656.jpg
  • List all the storage classes: k get sc

Difference between Volumes and Local PV

  • hostPath volume mounts a file or directory from the host node's filesystem into your Pod. This is not something most pods will need.
    • So, if you have a multi-node cluster, the pod is restarted for some reasons and assigned to another node, the new node won't have the old data on the same path.
    • That's why we have seen, that hostPath volumes work well only on single-node clusters.
  • Here, the Kubernetes local persistent volumes help us to overcome the restriction and we can work in a multi-node environment with no problems.
    • It remembers which node was used for provisioning the volume, thus making sure that a restarting POD always will find the data storage in the state it had left it before the reboot.
  • Once a node has died, the data of both hostpath and local persitent volumes of that node are lost.
If we use hostPath with glusterfs mount then no need to care about pod rescheduling, wherever pod get reschedule it will get updated data due to glusterfs replication.
  • Both use local disks of the machine.
Although hostPath is easy it should not be used in production.
  • To use local pv, we must first define the storage class:

    kind: StorageClass
      name: local-storage
    volumeBindingMode: WaitForFirstConsumer

  • Local volumes do not currently support dynamic provisioning (so we will have to create a PV for local volume), however a StorageClass should still be created to delay volume binding until Pod scheduling. This is specified by the WaitForFirstConsumer volume binding mode.

Difference between emptydir & hostpath

  • An emptyDir volume is first created when a Pod is assigned to a Node, and exists as long as that Pod is running on that node.
    • Volume data of hostPath is persisted in the file system of node. Even if POD is deleted, volume data is still stored in Node.
  • emptyDir space can be shared by multiple containers in a pod if needed.
When a Pod is restarted or removed, the data in the emptyDir is lost forever.
  • Some use cases for an emptyDir are:

    • scratch space, for a sort algorithm for example
    • when a long computation needs to be done in memory
    • as a cache
    • Sharing a storage space between containers.
  • emptyDir example

    apiVersion: v1
    kind: Pod
      name: my-pod
      - image: my-app-image
        name: my-app
        - mountPath: /cache
          name: cache-volume
        - name: cache-volume
          emptyDir: {}

Is emptyDir different from no volume at all?

Yes it is different - One of the main features of the emptyDir is that it can be mounted on multiple containers inside the same Pod. This cannot be done by using no volumes. - emptyDirs are preserved when the container inside the pod are restarted but not when the pod is re-scheduled. No volumes are not preserved when the container crashes. - So if you just want to preserve the data from container crashes and not pod rescheduling then you should use emptyDir.

  • Sample yaml of 3 containers sharing the same emptyDir volume
    apiVersion: v1
    kind: Pod
      name: myvolumes-pod
      - image: alpine
        imagePullPolicy: IfNotPresent
        name: myvolumes-container-1
        command: ['sh', '-c', 'echo The Bench Container 1 is Running ; sleep 3600']
        - mountPath: /demo1
          name: demo-volume
      - image: alpine
        imagePullPolicy: IfNotPresent
        name: myvolumes-container-2
        command: ['sh', '-c', 'echo The Bench Container 2 is Running ; sleep 3600']
        - mountPath: /demo2
          name: demo-volume
      - image: alpine
        imagePullPolicy: IfNotPresent
        name: myvolumes-container-3
        command: ['sh', '-c', 'echo The Bench Container 3 is Running ; sleep 3600']
        - mountPath: /demo3
          name: demo-volume
      - name: demo-volume
        emptyDir: {}
  • Note all 3 containers refer to the same name: demo-volume
    • All 3 containers mount the emptyDir at different mount points.


Last updated: 2022-10-03