Launching self-managed Windows nodes - Amazon EKS
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Launching self-managed Windows nodes

This topic describes how to launch Auto Scaling groups of Windows nodes that register with your Amazon EKS cluster. After the nodes join the cluster, you can deploy Kubernetes applications to them.

Important
  • Amazon EKS nodes are standard Amazon EC2 instances, and you are billed for them based on normal Amazon EC2 instance prices. For more information, see Amazon EC2 pricing.

  • You can launch Windows nodes in Amazon EKS extended clusters on Amazon Outposts, but you can't launch them in local clusters on Amazon Outposts. For more information, see Amazon EKS on Amazon Outposts.

Enable Windows support for your cluster. We recommend that you review important considerations before you launch a Windows node group. For more information, see Enabling Windows support.

You can launch self-managed Windows nodes with eksctl or the Amazon Web Services Management Console.

eksctl
To launch self-managed Windows nodes using eksctl

This procedure requires that you have installed eksctl, and that your eksctl version is at least 0.179.0. You can check your version with the following command.

eksctl version

For instructions on how to install or upgrade eksctl, see Installation in the eksctl documentation.

Note

This procedure only works for clusters that were created with eksctl.

  1. (Optional) If the AmazonEKS_CNI_Policy managed IAM policy (if you have an IPv4 cluster) or the AmazonEKS_CNI_IPv6_Policy (that you created yourself if you have an IPv6 cluster) is attached to your Amazon EKS node IAM role, we recommend assigning it to an IAM role that you associate to the Kubernetes aws-node service account instead. For more information, see Configuring the Amazon VPC CNI plugin for Kubernetes to use IAM roles for service accounts (IRSA).

  2. This procedure assumes that you have an existing cluster. If you don't already have an Amazon EKS cluster and an Amazon Linux node group to add a Windows node group to, we recommend that you follow the Getting started with Amazon EKS – eksctl guide. The guide provides a complete walkthrough for how to create an Amazon EKS cluster with Amazon Linux nodes.

    Create your node group with the following command. Replace region-code with the Amazon Web Services Region that your cluster is in. Replace my-cluster with your cluster name. The name can contain only alphanumeric characters (case-sensitive) and hyphens. It must start with an alphabetic character and can't be longer than 100 characters. Replace ng-windows with a name for your node group. The node group name can't be longer than 63 characters. It must start with letter or digit, but can also include hyphens and underscores for the remaining characters. For Kubernetes version 1.24 or later, you can replace 2019 with 2022 to use Windows Server 2022. Replace the rest of the example values with your own values.

    Important

    To deploy a node group to Amazon Outposts, Amazon Wavelength, or Amazon Local Zone subnets, don't pass the Amazon Outposts, Wavelength, or Local Zone subnets when you create the cluster. Create the node group with a config file, specifying the Amazon Outposts, Wavelength, or Local Zone subnets. For more information, see Create a nodegroup from a config file and Config file schema in the eksctl documentation.

    eksctl create nodegroup \ --region region-code \ --cluster my-cluster \ --name ng-windows \ --node-type t2.large \ --nodes 3 \ --nodes-min 1 \ --nodes-max 4 \ --managed=false \ --node-ami-family WindowsServer2019FullContainer
    Note
    • If nodes fail to join the cluster, see Nodes fail to join cluster in the Troubleshooting guide.

    • To see the available options for eksctl commands, enter the following command.

      eksctl command -help

    An example output is as follows. Several lines are output while the nodes are created. One of the last lines of output is the following example line.

    [✔]  created 1 nodegroup(s) in cluster "my-cluster"
  3. (Optional) Deploy a sample application to test your cluster and Windows nodes.

  4. We recommend blocking Pod access to IMDS if the following conditions are true:

    • You plan to assign IAM roles to all of your Kubernetes service accounts so that Pods only have the minimum permissions that they need.

    • No Pods in the cluster require access to the Amazon EC2 instance metadata service (IMDS) for other reasons, such as retrieving the current Amazon Web Services Region.

    For more information, see Restrict access to the instance profile assigned to the worker node.

Amazon Web Services Management Console
Prerequisites
Step 1: To launch self-managed Windows nodes using the Amazon Web Services Management Console
  1. Wait for your cluster status to show as ACTIVE. If you launch your nodes before the cluster is active, the nodes fail to register with the cluster and you need to relaunch them.

  2. Open the Amazon CloudFormation console at https://console.amazonaws.cn/cloudformation

  3. Choose Create stack.

  4. For Specify template, select Amazon S3 URL.

  5. Copy the following URL and paste it into Amazon S3 URL.

    https://s3.cn-north-1.amazonaws.com.cn/amazon-eks/cloudformation/2023-02-09/amazon-eks-windows-nodegroup.yaml
  6. Select Next twice.

  7. On the Quick create stack page, enter the following parameters accordingly:

    • Stack name: Choose a stack name for your Amazon CloudFormation stack. For example, you can call it my-cluster-nodes.

    • ClusterName: Enter the name that you used when you created your Amazon EKS cluster.

      Important

      This name must exactly match the name that you used in Step 1: Create your Amazon EKS cluster. Otherwise, your nodes can't join the cluster.

    • ClusterControlPlaneSecurityGroup: Choose the security group from the Amazon CloudFormation output that you generated when you created your VPC.

      The following steps show one method to retrieve the applicable group.

      1. Open the Amazon EKS console at https://console.amazonaws.cn/eks/home#/clusters.

      2. Choose the name of the cluster.

      3. Choose the Networking tab.

      4. Use the Additional security groups value as a reference when selecting from the ClusterControlPlaneSecurityGroup dropdown list.

    • NodeGroupName: Enter a name for your node group. This name can be used later to identify the Auto Scaling node group that's created for your nodes. The node group name can't be longer than 63 characters. It must start with letter or digit, but can also include hyphens and underscores for the remaining characters.

    • NodeAutoScalingGroupMinSize: Enter the minimum number of nodes that your node Auto Scaling group can scale in to.

    • NodeAutoScalingGroupDesiredCapacity: Enter the desired number of nodes to scale to when your stack is created.

    • NodeAutoScalingGroupMaxSize: Enter the maximum number of nodes that your node Auto Scaling group can scale out to.

    • NodeInstanceType: Choose an instance type for your nodes. For more information, see Choosing an Amazon EC2 instance type.

      Note

      The supported instance types for the latest version of the Amazon VPC CNI plugin for Kubernetes are listed in vpc_ip_resource_limit.go on GitHub. You might need to update your CNI version to use the latest supported instance types. For more information, see Working with the Amazon VPC CNI plugin for Kubernetes Amazon EKS add-on.

    • NodeImageIdSSMParam: Pre-populated with the Amazon EC2 Systems Manager parameter of the current recommended Amazon EKS optimized Windows Core AMI ID. To use the full version of Windows, replace Core with Full.

    • NodeImageId: (Optional) If you're using your own custom AMI (instead of the Amazon EKS optimized AMI), enter a node AMI ID for your Amazon Web Services Region. If you specify a value for this field, it overrides any values in the NodeImageIdSSMParam field.

    • NodeVolumeSize: Specify a root volume size for your nodes, in GiB.

    • KeyName: Enter the name of an Amazon EC2 SSH key pair that you can use to connect using SSH into your nodes with after they launch. If you don't already have an Amazon EC2 key pair, you can create one in the Amazon Web Services Management Console. For more information, see Amazon EC2 key pairs in the Amazon EC2 User Guide for Windows Instances.

      Note

      If you don't provide a key pair here, the Amazon CloudFormation stack fails to be created.

    • BootstrapArguments: Specify any optional arguments to pass to the node bootstrap script, such as extra kubelet arguments using -KubeletExtraArgs.

    • DisableIMDSv1: By default, each node supports the Instance Metadata Service Version 1 (IMDSv1) and IMDSv2. You can disable IMDSv1. To prevent future nodes and Pods in the node group from using MDSv1, set DisableIMDSv1 to true. For more information about IMDS, see Configuring the instance metadata service.

    • VpcId: Select the ID for the VPC that you created.

    • NodeSecurityGroups: Select the security group that was created for your Linux node group when you created your VPC. If your Linux nodes have more than one security group attached to them, specify all of them. This for, for example, if the Linux node group was created with eksctl.

    • Subnets: Choose the subnets that you created. If you created your VPC using the steps in Creating a VPC for your Amazon EKS cluster, then specify only the private subnets within the VPC for your nodes to launch into.

      Important
      • If any of the subnets are public subnets, then they must have the automatic public IP address assignment setting enabled. If the setting isn't enabled for the public subnet, then any nodes that you deploy to that public subnet won't be assigned a public IP address and won't be able to communicate with the cluster or other Amazon services. If the subnet was deployed before March 26, 2020 using either of the Amazon EKS Amazon CloudFormation VPC templates, or by using eksctl, then automatic public IP address assignment is disabled for public subnets. For information about how to enable public IP address assignment for a subnet, see Modifying the public IPv4 addressing attribute for your subnet. If the node is deployed to a private subnet, then it's able to communicate with the cluster and other Amazon services through a NAT gateway.

      • If the subnets don't have internet access, then make sure that you're aware of the considerations and extra steps in Private cluster requirements.

      • If you select Amazon Outposts, Wavelength, or Local Zone subnets, then the subnets must not have been passed in when you created the cluster.

  8. Acknowledge that the stack might create IAM resources, and then choose Create stack.

  9. When your stack has finished creating, select it in the console and choose Outputs.

  10. Record the NodeInstanceRole for the node group that was created. You need this when you configure your Amazon EKS Windows nodes.

Step 2: To enable nodes to join your cluster
  1. Check to see if you already have an aws-auth ConfigMap.

    kubectl describe configmap -n kube-system aws-auth
  2. If you are shown an aws-auth ConfigMap, then update it as needed.

    1. Open the ConfigMap for editing.

      kubectl edit -n kube-system configmap/aws-auth
    2. Add new mapRoles entries as needed. Set the rolearn values to the NodeInstanceRole values that you recorded in the previous procedures.

      [...] data: mapRoles: | - rolearn: <ARN of linux instance role (not instance profile)> username: system:node:{{EC2PrivateDNSName}} groups: - system:bootstrappers - system:nodes - rolearn: <ARN of windows instance role (not instance profile)> username: system:node:{{EC2PrivateDNSName}} groups: - system:bootstrappers - system:nodes - eks:kube-proxy-windows [...]
    3. Save the file and exit your text editor.

  3. If you received an error stating "Error from server (NotFound): configmaps "aws-auth" not found, then apply the stock ConfigMap.

    1. Download the configuration map.

      curl -O https://s3.cn-north-1.amazonaws.com.cn/amazon-eks/cloudformation/2020-10-29/aws-auth-cm-windows.yaml
    2. In the aws-auth-cm-windows.yaml file, set the rolearn values to the applicable NodeInstanceRole values that you recorded in the previous procedures. You can do this with a text editor, or by replacing the example values and running the following command:

      sed -i.bak -e 's|<ARN of linux instance role (not instance profile)>|my-node-linux-instance-role|' \ -e 's|<ARN of windows instance role (not instance profile)>|my-node-windows-instance-role|' aws-auth-cm-windows.yaml
      Important
      • Don't modify any other lines in this file.

      • Don't use the same IAM role for both Windows and Linux nodes.

    3. Apply the configuration. This command might take a few minutes to finish.

      kubectl apply -f aws-auth-cm-windows.yaml
  4. Watch the status of your nodes and wait for them to reach the Ready status.

    kubectl get nodes --watch

    Enter Ctrl+C to return to a shell prompt.

    Note

    If you receive any authorization or resource type errors, see Unauthorized or access denied (kubectl) in the troubleshooting topic.

    If nodes fail to join the cluster, then see Nodes fail to join cluster in the Troubleshooting guide.

Step 3: Additional actions
  1. (Optional) Deploy a sample application to test your cluster and Windows nodes.

  2. (Optional) If the AmazonEKS_CNI_Policy managed IAM policy (if you have an IPv4 cluster) or the AmazonEKS_CNI_IPv6_Policy (that you created yourself if you have an IPv6 cluster) is attached to your Amazon EKS node IAM role, we recommend assigning it to an IAM role that you associate to the Kubernetes aws-node service account instead. For more information, see Configuring the Amazon VPC CNI plugin for Kubernetes to use IAM roles for service accounts (IRSA).

  3. We recommend blocking Pod access to IMDS if the following conditions are true:

    • You plan to assign IAM roles to all of your Kubernetes service accounts so that Pods only have the minimum permissions that they need.

    • No Pods in the cluster require access to the Amazon EC2 instance metadata service (IMDS) for other reasons, such as retrieving the current Amazon Web Services Region.

    For more information, see Restrict access to the instance profile assigned to the worker node.