Helm Deployment

Use the official Couchbase Helm Chart to deploy multiple components, including the Autonomous Operator, Admission Controller, Couchbase clusters, and Sync Gateway.

Helm is a tool that streamlines the installation and management of applications on Kubernetes platforms. The official Couchbase Helm Chart can help you easily set up the Couchbase Autonomous Operator and deploy Couchbase clusters.

This page describes how to use the Couchbase Helm Chart to create various deployments of the Autonomous Operator, Admission Controller, Couchbase clusters, and Sync Gateway.

Install Helm

Helm 3.1+ is required when installing the official Couchbase Helm Chart.

Follow Helm’s official steps for installing helm on your particular operating system.

Add the Chart Repository

Before you can start using the Couchbase Helm Chart, you’ll need to add the chart repository to your helm installation:

helm repo add couchbase https://couchbase-partners.github.io/helm-charts/

Finish by updating the repository index:

helm repo update

Install the Couchbase Helm Chart

Use the following commands to install the default Couchbase Helm Chart. The default chart deploys the Autonomous Operator, the Admission Controller, and a Couchbase cluster.

  • Kubernetes

  • OpenShift

helm install <my-release> couchbase/couchbase-operator
  1. Create an imagePullSecret for retrieving images from the Red Hat Container Catalog:

    oc create secret docker-registry rh-catalog \
      --docker-server=registry.connect.redhat.com \
      --docker-username=<rhel-username> \
      --docker-password=<rhel-password> \
  2. Create a file named openshift_values.yaml with the following custom override values:

        repository: registry.connect.redhat.com/couchbase/operator
        tag: 2.0.0-1
      - rh-catalog
        repository: registry.connect.redhat.com/couchbase/admission-controller
        tag: 2.0.0-1
      - rh-catalog
       image: registry.connect.redhat.com/couchbase/server:6.5.0-2
  3. Install the chart using the custom override values:

    helm install <my-release> -f openshift_values.yaml couchbase/couchbase-operator

Installing the default chart provides a quick way to try out using the Autonomous Operator for managing Couchbase Server on Kubernetes platforms. However, for more involved development and production use-cases, you will need to customize the installation to better your needs.

Customize the Installation

The Couchbase Helm Chart can be installed as-is for previewing Autonomous Operator functionality. However, customizing the installation with your own configuration will be necessary for production environments.

Customizing the chart installation allows you to do two things:

  1. Specify which components will be deployed

  2. Configure the deployed components

The Couchbase Helm Chart is capable of installing and configuring the Autonomous Operator, Admission Controller, Couchbase cluster, and Sync Gateway. Enabling and configuring each component is accomplished by overriding the default values in the Couchbase Helm Chart’s values.yaml file.

There are two methods for specifying overrides during chart installation: --values and --set.

  • --values

  • --set

The --values option is the preferred method because it allows you to keep your overrides in a YAML file, rather than specifying them all on the command line.

  1. Create a YAML file and add your overrides to it.

    Here’s an example called myvalues.yaml:

      imagePullPolicy: Always
  2. Specify your overrides file when you install the chart:

    helm install my-release --values myvalues.yaml couchbase/couchbase-operator

    The values in your overrides file (myvalues.yaml) will override their counterparts in the chart’s values.yaml file. Any values in values.yaml that weren’t overridden will keep their defaults.

If you only need to make minor customizations, you can specify them on the command line by using the --set option. For example:

helm install my-release --set cluster.servers.default.size=5 couchbase/couchbase-operator

This would translate to the following in the values.yaml of the chart:

      size: 5

Any values in values.yaml that weren’t overridden will keep their defaults.

Selective Deployment

In many cases you may only want to install a single component, such as a Couchbase cluster, or an instance of Sync Gateway. Specific components may be enabled/disabled by overriding the default values in the install section of the chart:

# Select what to install
  # install the couchbase operator
  couchbaseOperator: true
  # install the admission controller
  admissionController: true
  # install couchbase cluster
  couchbaseCluster: true
  # install sync gateway
  syncGateway: false

For example, if you wanted to have a Helm release that exclusively managed the Autonomous Operator and Admission Controller, then you would override the value for couchbaseCluster with a value of false, leaving only couchbaseOperator: true and admissionController: true, and all others false. Likewise, if you already had the Autonomous Operator and Admission Controller deployed in your environnement, and you just wanted to deploy a Couchbase cluster, then you would override the values for couchbaseOperator and admissionController with a value of false, leaving only couchbaseCluster: true, and all others false.

Even though the Couchbase Helm Chart has full configuration parameters for each component, if a component is disabled in the install section, then that component’s configuration parameters are ignored.

Deploying Sync Gateway

Sync Gateway is disabled by default in the Couchbase Helm Chart. To install the chart with Sync Gateway enabled, you will need to customize the installation to include it:

helm install mobile --set install.syncGateway=true couchbase/couchbase-operator

By default, Sync Gateway is only exposed to the internal Kubernetes network with a ClusterIP service. To change the type of service that is used to expose Sync Gateway, you can specify an override for syncGateway.exposeServiceType during installation:

helm install mobile --set install.syncGateway=true --set syncGateway.exposeServiceType=LoadBalancer couchbase/couchbase-operator

For more information about using Sync Gateway with the Autonomous Operator, you can refer to the Sync Gateway Tutorial.

Production Considerations

TLS Encryption

Production deployments should enable TLS to encrypt traffic between the Autonomous Operator and the Couchbase cluster. TLS certificates can be auto-generated, or provided by the user.

Example 1. Auto-generated certificates

Install the chart with tls enabled:

helm install my-release --set tls.generate=true couchbase/couchbase-operator
Example 2. Bring your own certificates
  1. Create a file named tls_values.yaml with the following custom override values for the Couchbase Helm Chart:

           operatorSecret: tls-operator-secret
           serverSecert: my-tls-server-secret
  2. Install the chart using the custom override values.

    helm install my-release -f tls_values.yaml couchbase/couchbase-operator

Deploying Multiple Chart Instances (Releases)

The example installation commands on this page assume the default namespace is used (they commands don’t specify the -n option). This is important to note because the Couchbase Helm Chart deploys both the Autonomous Operator and the Admission Controller by default, and these components should not be deployed more than once in the same namespace. If you install the default Couchbase Helm Chart multiple times in the same namespace, then you’ll end up with multiple instances of the Autonomous Operator and the Admission Controller, which will cause errors in your deployments.

In addition, the example installation commands on this page also specify my-release as the name for the chart release. If you plan to use Helm to install multiple instances (releases) of the Couchbase Helm Chart, you should consider giving each release a unique name to help you more easily identify the resources that are associated with each release.

If you want Helm to generate a name for you, you can run any of the example installation commands on this page using the -g option instead of the name parameter:

helm install -g couchbase/couchbase-operator

Chart Versions

The helm install command will always pull the highest version of a chart. To list the versions of the Couchbase Helm Chart that are available for installation, you can use the helm search command:

helm search hub couchbase
NAME                        	                      CHART VERSION	APP VERSION	DESCRIPTION
https://hub.helm.sh/charts/couchbase/couchbase-...	2.0.0        	2.0.0      	A Helm chart to deploy the Couchbase Autonomous...

Here, the CHART VERSION is 2.0.0, and the APP VERSION (the Autonomous Operator version) is 2.0.0.

To install a specific version of the Couchbase Hel Chart chart, include the --version argument during installation:

helm install my-release --version 2.0.0 couchbase/couchbase-operator

If you’re having trouble finding or installing a specific version of a chart, use the helm repo update command to ensure that you have the latest list of charts.