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eksctl - a CLI for Amazon EKS

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eksctl is a simple CLI tool for creating clusters on EKS - Amazon’s new managed Kubernetes service for EC2. It is written in Go, and based on Amazon’s official CloudFormation templates.

You can create a cluster in minutes with just one command – eksctl create cluster!

Gophers: E, K, S, C, T, & L


To download the latest release, run:

curl --silent --location "$(uname -s)_amd64.tar.gz" | tar xz -C /tmp
sudo mv /tmp/eksctl /usr/local/bin

You will need to have AWS API credentials configured. What works for AWS CLI or any other tools (kops, Terraform etc), should be sufficient. You can use ~/.aws/credentials file or environment variables. For more information read AWS documentation.

To create a basic cluster, run:

eksctl create cluster

A cluster will be created with default parameters

Once you have created a cluster, you will find kubeconfig in your current working directory. If you have kubectl v1.10.x as well as heptio-authenticator-aws commands in your PATH, you should be able to use kubectl. You will need to make sure to use the same AWS API credentials for this also. Check EKS docs for instructions.

Example output:

$ eksctl create cluster
2018-06-06T16:40:58+01:00 [ℹ]  importing SSH public key "~/.ssh/" as "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658"
2018-06-06T16:40:58+01:00 [ℹ]  creating EKS cluster "extravagant-sculpture-1528299658" in "us-west-2" region
2018-06-06T16:40:58+01:00 [ℹ]  creating VPC stack "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658-VPC"
2018-06-06T16:40:58+01:00 [ℹ]  creating ServiceRole stack "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658-ServiceRole"
2018-06-06T16:41:19+01:00 [✔]  created ServiceRole stack "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658-ServiceRole"
2018-06-06T16:42:19+01:00 [✔]  created VPC stack "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658-VPC"
2018-06-06T16:42:19+01:00 [ℹ]  creating control plane "extravagant-sculpture-1528299658"
2018-06-06T16:50:41+01:00 [✔]  created control plane "extravagant-sculpture-1528299658"
2018-06-06T16:50:41+01:00 [ℹ]  creating DefaultNodeGroup stack "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658-DefaultNodeGroup"
2018-06-06T16:54:22+01:00 [✔]  created DefaultNodeGroup stack "EKS-extravagant-sculpture-1528299658-DefaultNodeGroup"
2018-06-06T16:54:22+01:00 [✔]  all EKS cluster "extravagant-sculpture-1528299658" resources has been created
2018-06-06T16:54:22+01:00 [ℹ]  wrote "kubeconfig2"
2018-06-06T16:54:23+01:00 [ℹ]  the cluster has 0 nodes
2018-06-06T16:54:23+01:00 [ℹ]  waiting for at least 2 nodes to become ready
2018-06-06T16:54:49+01:00 [ℹ]  the cluster has 2 nodes
2018-06-06T16:54:49+01:00 [ℹ]  node "ip-192-168-185-142.ec2.internal" is ready
2018-06-06T16:54:49+01:00 [ℹ]  node "ip-192-168-221-172.ec2.internal" is ready
2018-06-06T16:54:49+01:00 [ℹ]  EKS cluster "extravagant-sculpture-1528299658" is ready in "us-west-2" region

To list the details about a cluster or all of the clusters, use:

eksctl get cluster [--cluster-name <name>] [--region <region>]

To create the same kind of basic cluster, but with a different name, run:

eksctl create cluster --cluster-name cluster-1 --nodes 4

To write cluster credentials to a file other than default, run:

eksctl create cluster --cluster-name cluster-2 --nodes 4 --kubeconfig ./kubeconfig.cluster-2.yaml

To prevent storing cluster credentials locally, run:

eksctl create cluster --cluster-name cluster-3 --nodes 4 --write-kubeconfig=false

To let eksctl manage cluster credentials under ~/.kube/eksctl/clusters directory, run:

eksctl create cluster --cluster-name cluster-3 --nodes 4 --auto-kubeconfig

To obtain cluster credentials at any point in time, run:

eksctl utils write-kubeconfig --cluster-name <name> [--kubeconfig <path>]

To use a 3-5 node Auto Scaling Group, run:

eksctl create cluster --cluster-name cluster-5 --nodes-min 3 --nodes-max 5

To use 30 c4.xlarge nodes, run:

eksctl create cluster --cluster-name cluster-6 --nodes 30 --node-type c4.xlarge

To delete a cluster, run:

eksctl delete cluster --cluster-name <name> [--region <region>]

Project Roadmap

Developer use-case (0.2.0)

It should suffice to install a cluster for development with just a single command. Here are some examples:

To create a cluster with default configuration (2 m4.large nodes), run:

eksctl create cluster

The developer may choose to pre-configure popular addons, e.g.:

It should be possible to combine any or all of these addons.

It would also be possible to add any of the addons after cluster was created with eksctl create addons.

Manage EKS the GitOps way (0.3.0)

Just like kubectl, eksctl aims to be compliant with GitOps model, and can be used as part of a GitOps toolkit!

For example, eksctl apply --cluster-config prod-cluster.yaml will manage cluster state declaratively.

And eksctld will be a controller inside of one cluster that can manage multiple other clusters based on Kubernetes Cluster API definitions (CRDs).


Code contributions are very welcome, however until a 0.1.0 release testing and bug reports are the contributions that authors will appreciate the most.

Get in touch

Create an issue, or login to Weave Community Slack (#eksctl) (signup).

Logo Credits

Original Gophers drawn by Ashley McNamara, unique E, K, S, C, T & L Gopher identities had been produced with