Setting Up a Kubernetes Cluster With Vagrant and Virtualbox

With one master and 3 node, Dashboard, CoreDNS and Heapster monitoring

Setting Up a Kubernetes Cluster With Vagrant and Virtualbox

With one master and 3 node, Dashboard, CoreDNS and Heapster monitoring

1100 Words | Read in about 3 Min
Tags: kubernetes  vagrant 

This doc is out-of-date, see at GitHub:

使用Vagrant和VirtualBox在本地搭建分布式Kubernetes集群 - 中文

Using vagrant file to build a Kubernetes cluster which consists of 1 master(also as node) and 3 nodes. You don’t have to create complicated ca files or configuration.

Why not kubeadm?

Because I want to setup the etcd, apiserver, controller, scheduler without docker container.


We will create a Kubernetes 1.9.1+ cluster with 3 nodes which contains the components below:

IP Hostname Componets node1 kube-apiserver, kube-controller-manager, kube-scheduler, etcd, kubelet, docker, flannel, dashboard node2 kubelet, docker, flannel、traefik node3 kubelet, docker, flannel

The default setting will create the private network from to for nodes, and it will use the host’s DHCP for the public ip.

The kubernetes service’s vip range is

The container network range is owned by flanneld with host-gw backend.

kube-proxy will use ipvs mode.



  • Host server with 8G+ mem(More is better), 60G disk, 8 core cpu at lease
  • Vagrant 2.0+
  • Virtualbox 5.0+
  • Across GFW to download the kubernetes files (For China users)
  • MacOS/Linux (Windows is not supported)

Support Addons


  • CoreDNS
  • Dashboard
  • Traefik


  • Heapster + InfluxDB + Grafana
  • ElasticSearch + Fluentd + Kibana
  • Istio service mesh
  • Helm
  • Vistio


Download kubernetes binary release first and move them to this git repo.

git clone
cd kubernetes-vagrant-centos-cluster
vagrant up

Before you run vagrant up make sure this repo directory include the flowing files:

  • kubernetes-client-linux-amd64.tar.gz
  • kubernetes-server-linux-amd64.tar.gz

Wait about 10 minutes the kubernetes cluster will be setup automatically.


If you have difficult to vagrant up the cluster because of have no way to downlaod the centos/7 box, you can download the box and add it first.

Add centos/7 box manually

wget -c
vagrant box add --name centos/7

The next time you run vagrant up, vagrant will import the local box automatically.

Connect to kubernetes cluster

There are 3 ways to access the kubernetes cluster.


Copy conf/admin.kubeconfig to ~/.kube/config, using kubectl CLI to access the cluster.

mkdir -p ~/.kube
cp conf/admin.kubeconfig ~/.kube/config

We recommend this way.


Login to the virtual machine to access and debug the cluster.

vagrant ssh node1
sudo -i
kubectl get nodes

Kubernetes dashbaord

Kubernetes dashboard URL:

Get the token:

kubectl -n kube-system describe secret `kubectl -n kube-system get secret|grep admin-token|cut -d " " -f1`|grep "token:"|tr -s " "|cut -d " " -f2

Note: You can see the token message from vagrant up logs.

You can use the token below directly:


Kubernetes dashboard

Only if you install the heapter addon bellow that you can see the metrics.


Heapster monitoring

Run this command on you local machine.

kubectl apply -f addon/heapster/

Append the following item to you local /etc/hosts file.

Open the URL in your browser:

Grafana animation

Treafik ingress

Run this command on you local machine.

kubectl apply -f addon/traefik-ingress

Append the following item to you local /etc/hosts file.

Traefik UI URL:


Run this command on your local machine.

kubectl apply -f addon/heapster/

Note: Powerful CPU and memory allocation required. At least 4G per virtual machine.


Run this command on your local machine.


Service Mesh

We use istio as the default service mesh.


kubectl apply -f addon/istio/

Run sample

kubectl apply -n default -f <(istioctl kube-inject -f yaml/istio-bookinfo/bookinfo.yaml)
istioctl create -f yaml/istio-bookinfo/bookinfo-gateway.yaml

Add the following items into /etc/hosts in your local machine.

We can see the services from the following URLs.

Service URL

Note: JAEGER_PORT equal to kubectl -n istio-system get svc tracing -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[0].nodePort}' and GATEWAY_PORT equal to kubectl -n istio-system get svc istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[0].nodePort}'.

More detail see


Vizceral is an open source project released by Netflix to monitor network traffic between applications and clusters in near real time. Vistio is an adaptation of Vizceral for Istio and mesh monitoring. It utilizes metrics generated by Istio Mixer which are then fed into Prometheus. Vistio queries Prometheus and stores that data locally to allow for the replaying of traffic.

Run the following commands in you local machine.

# Deploy vistio via kubectl
kubectl apply -f addon/vistio/

# Expose vistio-api
kubectl -n default port-forward $(kubectl -n default get pod -l app=vistio-api -o jsonpath='{.items[0]}') 9091:9091 &

# Expose vistio in another terminal window
kubectl -n default port-forward $(kubectl -n default get pod -l app=vistio-web -o jsonpath='{.items[0]}') 8080:8080 &

If everything up until now is working you should be able to load the Vistio UI in your browser http://localhost:8080

vistio global view

More details see Vistio — Visualize your Istio Mesh Using Netflix’s Vizceral.


Except for special claim, execute the following commands under the current git repo root directory.


Suspend the current state of VMs.

vagrant suspend


Resume the last state of VMs.

vagrant resume

Note: every time you resume the VMs you will find that the machine time is still at you last time you suspended it. So consider to halt the VMs and restart them.


Halt the VMs and up them again.

vagrant halt
vagrant up
# login to node1
vagrant ssh node1
# run the prosivision scripts
# login to node2
vagrant ssh node2
# run the prosivision scripts
# login to node3
vagrant ssh node3
# run the prosivision scripts
sudo -i
cd /vagrant/hack

Now you have provisioned the base kubernetes environments and you can login to kubernetes dashboard, run the following command at the root of this repo to get the admin token.


Following the hint to login.


Clean up the VMs.

vagrant destroy
rm -rf .vagrant


Only use for development and test, don’t use it in production environment.


1100 Words | Read in about 3 Min
Tags: kubernetes  vagrant