Drive Tanzu Mission Control Cluster Configuration and Add-ons with Flux CD

July 6, 2022 Nic Slattery

VMware Tanzu Mission Control users can now drive clusters via GitOps. This new feature of Tanzu Mission Control is built on Flux CD and enables users to attach a git repository to a cluster and sync YAML artifacts (using Kustomize) from the repository to the cluster. This feature provides a method for managing cluster configurations with Tanzu Mission Control via continuous delivery from a git repository. With today’s announcement, Tanzu Mission Control users can introduce consistency in their GitOps toolchain.

Previously, GitOps solutions typically consisted of a DIY set of tools overlaid on top of existing systems. However, DIY solutions typically result in more touchpoints for infrastructure admins, which can lead to inconsistencies across clusters and teams, slow down the route to production, and increase security risks (while lacking auditability). Moreover, an unfortunate by-product of DIY solutions is long-term maintenance issues that hamper innovation and agility.

Eliminate ClickOps frustration

With this new GitOps enabling feature, Tanzu Mission Control customers will benefit from removing repetitive administrative tasks, will be able to spend more time scaling their Kubernetes environments, and improve responsiveness to developers. This feature can also be used to create any cluster resources that were previously created via the command-line interface (CLI) or GUI, such as namespaces, installed applications, or policies. For example, infrastructure administrators are often required to install packages (such as monitoring tools and ingress controllers) before passing ownership of the cluster to a development team. This new capability can be used to streamline this process by defining the installed packages in a reusable folder in a git repository and having Tanzu Mission Control sync the contents to the cluster. 

 The key capabilities introduced with this feature include the ability to:

  • Create and manage git repository credentials – This ensures that your cluster can connect to repositories that require authentication.
  • Add git repositories to a cluster – Tanzu Mission Control manages the connection between your cluster and your repository so that files from the repository can be synced to the cluster.
  • Sync kustomization files from a git repository to a cluster – Tanzu Mission Control syncs kustomizations from your repository to your cluster. This allows you to define cluster resources, such as installed applications, created namespaces, etc. within a reusable folder in your repository instead of manually creating resources through the CLI or GUI. 

Together, these capabilities enable users to drive the configuration of Tanzu Mission Control–managed clusters from a git repository

Enterprise-ready open source

With the release of this Flux-based continuous delivery feature, Tanzu Mission Control now provides a holistic solution to reduce overhead and improve consistency of your cluster configuration. You can now apply cluster configurations and manage Day 2 operations from a single source of truth (a git repository). You can also streamline your operations activities, since Tanzu Mission Control manages Flux on your behalf, which eliminates the need for manual installation or setup. Tanzu Mission Control provides an end-to-end workflow for syncing resources defined as YAML in a git repository to your cluster, and removes any need to manually install or manage open source components.

The addition of continuous delivery for Tanzu Mission Control clusters means that operators can manage their cluster configuration from a single source (a git repository). This effectively reduces cluster configuration drift, simplifies operations, and decreases the effort to create and configure new clusters.

In the future, this new continuous delivery capability will evolve to support cluster groups, so that clusters in a Tanzu Mission Control cluster group can be driven from a single git repository.

About the Author

Nic Slattery leads product management for automation and DevOps features in VMware Tanzu Mission Control. Prior to joining the Tanzu team, he was product manager for application platforms, automation, and monitoring features for VMware Cloud Director. Nic joined VMware after leading software development at a renewable energy startup in Melbourne, Australia. He enjoys working on fast-paced collaborative teams building impactful new products.

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