ManifestWork

What is ManifestWork

ManifestWork is used to define a group of Kubernetes resources on the hub to be applied to the managed cluster. In the open-cluster-management project, a ManifestWork resource must be created in the cluster namespace. A work agent implemented in work project is run on the managed cluster and monitors the ManifestWork resource in the cluster namespace on the hub cluster.

An example of ManifestWork to deploy a deployment to the managed cluster is shown in the following example.

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: <target managed cluster>
  name: hello-work-demo
spec:
  workload:
    manifests:
      - apiVersion: apps/v1
        kind: Deployment
        metadata:
          name: hello
          namespace: default
        spec:
          selector:
            matchLabels:
              app: hello
          template:
            metadata:
              labels:
                app: hello
            spec:
              containers:
                - name: hello
                  image: quay.io/asmacdo/busybox
                  command:
                    ["sh", "-c", 'echo "Hello, Kubernetes!" && sleep 3600']

Status tracking

Work agent will track all the resources defined in ManifestWork and update its status. There are two types of status in manifestwork. The resourceStatus tracks the status of each manifest in the ManifestWork and conditions reflects the overall status of the ManifestWork. Work agent currently checks whether a resource is Available, meaning the resource exists on the managed cluster, and Applied means the resource defined in ManifestWork has been applied to the managed cluster.

Here is an example.

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata: ... 
spec: ...
status:
  conditions:
    - lastTransitionTime: "2021-06-15T02:26:02Z"
      message: Apply manifest work complete
      reason: AppliedManifestWorkComplete
      status: "True"
      type: Applied
    - lastTransitionTime: "2021-06-15T02:26:02Z"
      message: All resources are available
      reason: ResourcesAvailable
      status: "True"
      type: Available
  resourceStatus:
    manifests:
      - conditions:
          - lastTransitionTime: "2021-06-15T02:26:02Z"
            message: Apply manifest complete
            reason: AppliedManifestComplete
            status: "True"
            type: Applied
          - lastTransitionTime: "2021-06-15T02:26:02Z"
            message: Resource is available
            reason: ResourceAvailable
            status: "True"
            type: Available
        resourceMeta:
          group: apps
          kind: Deployment
          name: hello
          namespace: default
          ordinal: 0
          resource: deployments
          version: v1

Fine-grained field values tracking

Optionally, we can let the work agent aggregate and report certain fields from the distributed resources to the hub clusters by setting FeedbackRule for the ManifestWork:

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata: ...
spec:
  workload: ...
  manifestConfigs:
    - resourceIdentifier:
        group: apps
        resource: deployments
        namespace: default
        name: hello
      feedbackRules:
        - type: WellKnownStatus
        - type: JSONPaths
          jsonPaths:
            - name: isAvailable
              path: '.status.conditions[?(@.type=="Available")].status'

The feedback rules prescribe the work agent to periodically get the latest states of the resources, and scrape merely those expected fields from them, which is helpful for trimming the payload size of the status. Note that the collected feedback values on the ManifestWork will not be updated unless the latest value is changed/different from the previous recorded value. Currently, it supports two kinds of FeedbackRule:

  • WellKnownStatus: Using the pre-built template of feedback values for those well-known kubernetes resources.
  • JSONPaths: A valid Kubernetes JSON-Path that selects a scalar field from the resource. Currently supported types are Integer, String and Boolean.

The default feedback value scraping interval is 30 second, and we can override it by setting --status-sync-interval on your work agent. Too short period can cause excessive burden to the control plane of the managed cluster, so generally a recommended lower bound for the interval is 5 second.

In the end, the scraped values from feedback rules will be shown in the status:

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata: ...
spec: ...
status:  
  resourceStatus:
    manifests:
    - conditions: ...
      resourceMeta: ...
      statusFeedback:
        values:
        - fieldValue:
            integer: 1
            type: Integer
          name: ReadyReplicas
        - fieldValue:
            integer: 1
            type: Integer
          name: Replicas
        - fieldValue:
            integer: 1
            type: Integer
          name: AvailableReplicas
        - fieldValue:
            string: "True"
            type: String
          name: isAvailable

Garbage collection

To ensure the resources applied by ManifestWork are reliably recorded, the work agent creates an AppliedManifestWork on the managed cluster for each ManifestWork as an anchor for resources relating to ManifestWork. When ManifestWork is deleted, work agent runs a Foreground deletion, that ManifestWork will stay in deleting state until all its related resources has been fully cleaned in the managed cluster.

Delete options

User can explicitly choose not to garbage collect the applied resources when a ManifestWork is deleted. The user should specify the deleteOption in the ManifestWork. By default, deleteOption is set as Foreground which means the applied resources on the spoke will be deleted with the removal of ManifestWork. User can set it to Orphan so the applied resources will not be deleted. Here is an example:

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata: ...
spec:
  workload: ...
  deleteOption:
    propagationPolicy: Orphan

Alternatively, user can also specify a certain resource defined in the ManifestWork to be orphaned by setting the deleteOption to be SelectivelyOrphan. Here is an example with SelectivelyOrphan specified. It ensures the removal of deployment resource specified in the ManifestWork while the service resource is kept.

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  name: selective-delete-work
spec:
  workload: ...
  deleteOption:
    propagationPolicy: SelectivelyOrphan
    selectivelyOrphans:
      orphaningRules:
      - group: ""
        resource: services
        namespace: default
        name: helloworld

Resource Race and Adoption

It is possible to create two ManifestWorks for the same cluster with the same resource defined. For example, the user can create two Manifestworks on cluster1, and both Manifestworks have the deployment resource hello in default namespace. If the content of the resource is different, the two ManifestWorks will fight, and it is desired since each ManifestWork is treated as equal and each ManifestWork is declaring the ownership of the resource. If there is another controller on the managed cluster that tries to manipulate the resource applied by a ManifestWork, this controller will also fight with work agent.

When one of the ManifestWork is deleted, the applied resource will not be removed no matter DeleteOption is set or not. The remaining ManifestWork will still keep the ownership of the resource.

To resolve such conflict, we introduce updateStrategy in 0.8.0 release. User can choose a different update strategy to alleviate the resource conflict.

  • CreateOnly: with this strategy, the work-agent will only ensure creation of the certain manifest if the resource does not exist. work-agent will not update the resource, hence the ownership of the whole resource can be taken over by another ManifestWork or controller.
  • ServerSideApply: with this strategy, the work-agent will run server side apply for the certain manifest. The default field manager is work-agent, and can be customized. If another ManifestWork or controller takes the ownership of a certain field in the manifest, the original ManifestWork will report conflict. User can prune the original ManifestWork so only field that it will own maintains.

An example of using ServerSideApply strategy as following:

  1. User creates a ManifestWork with ServerSideApply specified:
apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: <target managed cluster>
  name: hello-work-demo
spec:
  workload: ...
  manifestConfigs:
    - resourceIdentifier:
        group: apps
        resource: deployments
        namespace: default
        name: hello
      updateStrategy:
        type: ServerSideApply
  1. User creates another ManifestWork with ServerSideApply but with different field manager.
apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: <target managed cluster>
  name: hello-work-replica-patch
spec:
  workload:
    manifests:
      - apiVersion: apps/v1
        kind: Deployment
        metadata:
          name: hello
          namespace: default
        spec:
          replicas: 3
  manifestConfigs:
    - resourceIdentifier:
        group: apps
        resource: deployments
        namespace: default
        name: hello
      updateStrategy:
        type: ServerSideApply
        serverSideApply:
          force: true
          fieldManager: work-agent-another

The second ManifestWork only defines replicas in the manifest, so it takes the ownership of replicas. If the first ManifestWork is updated to add replicas field with different value, it will get conflict condition and manifest will not be updated by it.

Instead of create the second ManifestWork, user can also set HPA for this deployment. HPA will also take the ownership of replicas, and the update of replicas field in the first ManifestWork will return conflict condition.

Permission setting for work agent

All workload manifests are applied to the managed cluster by the work agent, and by default the work agent has the following permission for the managed cluster:

  • clusterRole admin(instead of the cluster-admin) to apply kubernetes common resources
  • managing customresourcedefinitions, but can not manage a specific custom resource instance
  • managing clusterrolebindings, rolebindings, clusterroles, roles, including the bind and escalate permission, this is why we can grant work-agent service account extra permissions using ManifestWork

So if the workload manifests to be applied on the managed cluster exceeds the above permission, for example some Customer Resource instances, there will be an error ... is forbidden: User "system:serviceaccount:open-cluster-management-agent:klusterlet-work-sa" cannot get resource ... reflected on the ManifestWork status.

To prevent this, the service account klusterlet-work-sa used by the work-agent needs to be given the corresponding permissions. There are several ways:

  • add permission on the managed cluster directly, we can
    • aggregate the new clusterRole for your to-be-applied resources to the existing admin clusterRole
    • OR create role/clusterRole roleBinding/clusterRoleBinding for the klusterlet-work-sa service account
  • add permission on the hub cluster by another ManifestWork, the ManifestWork includes
    • an aggregated clusterRole for your to-be-applied resources to the existing admin clusterRole
    • OR role/clusterRole roleBinding/clusterRoleBinding for the klusterlet-work-sa service account

Below is an example use ManifestWork to give klusterlet-work-sa permission for resource machines.cluster.x-k8s.io

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: cluster1
  name: permission-set
spec:
  workload:
    manifests:
      - apiVersion: rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1
        kind: ClusterRole
        metadata:
          name: open-cluster-management:klusterlet-work:my-role
        rules:
          # Allow agent to managed machines
          - apiGroups: ["cluster.x-k8s.io"]
            resources: ["machines"]
            verbs: ["get", "list", "watch", "create", "update", "patch", "delete"]
      - apiVersion: rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1
        kind: ClusterRoleBinding
        metadata:
          name: open-cluster-management:klusterlet-work:my-binding
        roleRef:
          apiGroup: rbac.authorization.k8s.io
          kind: ClusterRole
          name: open-cluster-management:klusterlet-work:my-role
        subjects:
          - kind: ServiceAccount
            name: klusterlet-work-sa
            namespace: open-cluster-management-agent

Treating defaulting/immutable fields in API

The kube-apiserver sets the defaulting/immutable fields for some APIs if the user does not set them. And it may fail to deploy these APIs using ManifestWork. Because in the reconcile loop, the work agent will try to update the immutable or default field after comparing the desired manifest in the ManifestWork and existing resource in the cluster, and the update will fail or not take effect.

Let’s use Job as an example. The kube-apiserver will set a default selector and label on the Pod of Job if the user does not set spec.Selector in the Job. The fields are immutable, so the ManifestWork will report AppliedManifestFailed when we apply a Job without spec.Selector using ManifestWork.

apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: cluster1
  name: exmaple-job
spec:
  workload:
    manifests:
      - apiVersion: batch/v1
        kind: Job
        metadata:
          name: pi
          namespace: default
        spec:
          template:
            spec:
              containers:
              - name: pi
                image: perl:5.34.0
                command: ["perl",  "-Mbignum=bpi", "-wle", "print bpi(2000)"]
              restartPolicy: Never
          backoffLimit: 4

There are 2 options to fix this issue.

  1. Specify the fields manually if they are configurable. For example, set spec.manualSelector=true and your own labels in the spec.selector of the Job, and set the same labels for the containers.
apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: cluster1
  name: exmaple-job-1
spec:
  workload:    
    manifests:
      - apiVersion: batch/v1
        kind: Job
        metadata:
          name: pi
          namespace: default
        spec:
          manualSelector: true
          selector:
            matchLabels:
              job: pi
          template:
            metadata:
              labels:
                job: pi
            spec:
              containers:
              - name: pi
                image: perl:5.34.0
                command: ["perl",  "-Mbignum=bpi", "-wle", "print bpi(2000)"]
              restartPolicy: Never
          backoffLimit: 4
  1. Set the updateStrategy ServerSideApply in the ManifestWork for the API.
apiVersion: work.open-cluster-management.io/v1
kind: ManifestWork
metadata:
  namespace: cluster1
  name: exmaple-job
spec:
  manifestConfigs:
    - resourceIdentifier:
        group: batch
        resource: jobs
        namespace: default
        name: pi
      updateStrategy:
        type: ServerSideApply
  workload:
    manifests:
      - apiVersion: batch/v1
        kind: Job
        metadata:
          name: pi
          namespace: default
        spec:
          template:
            spec:
              containers:
              - name: pi
                image: perl:5.34.0
                command: ["perl",  "-Mbignum=bpi", "-wle", "print bpi(2000)"]
              restartPolicy: Never
          backoffLimit: 4