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For purposes of automation, it is strongly recommended that users create and manage version controlled "cluster specs" to provision and manage the lifecycle of clusters. This is well suited for scenarios where the cluster lifecycle (creation etc) needs to be embedded into a larger workflow where reproducible environments are required. For example:

  • Jenkins or a CI system that needs to provision a cluster as part of a larger workflow
  • Reproducible Infrastructure
  • Ephemeral clusters for QA/Testing


Ensure you have created valid cloud credentials for the controller to manage the lifecycle of Amazon EKS clusters on your behalf in your AWS account.

Automation Pipelines

The RCTL CLI can be easily embedded and integrated into your preferred platform for automation pipelines. Here is an example of a Jenkins based pipeline that uses RCTL to provision an Amazon EKS Cluster based on the provided cluster specification.

Sequence Diagram


Multiple ready to use examples of cluster specifications are maintained and provided in this Public Git Repo.

Create Cluster


Create an EKS cluster object in the configured project in the Controller. You can optionally also specify the cluster blueprint during this step. To create an EKS cluster, region and cloud credentials name are mandatory. If not specified, the default cluster blueprint will be used.

./rctl create cluster eks eks-cluster sample-credentials --region us-west-2

To create an EKS cluster with a custom blueprint

./rctl create cluster eks eks-cluster sample-credentials --region us-west-2 -b standard-blueprint


You can also create an EKS cluster based on a version controlled cluster spec that you can manage in a Git repository. This enables users to develop automation for reproducible infrastructure.

./rctl create cluster eks -f cluster-spec.yml

An illustrative example of the cluster spec YAML file for EKS is shown below

kind: Cluster
  # cluster labels
    env: dev
    type: eks-workloads
  name: eks-cluster
  project: defaultproject
  type: eks
  blueprint: default
  cloudprovider: dev-credential # Name of the cloud credential object created on the Controller
kind: ClusterConfig
  name: eks-cluster
  region: us-west-1
  version: "1.18"
    'demo': 'true'
  - name: nodegroup-1
    instanceType: t3.xlarge
    desiredCapacity: 1
    volumeType: gp3
    volumeSize: 50
    privateNetworking: true

Get Cluster Details

Once the cluster has been created, use this command to retrieve details about the cluster.

./rctl get cluster cluster-name

An example for a successfully provisioned and operational cluster is shown below.

| NAME         | CREATED AT                  | TYPE    | STATUS | BLUEPRINT | PROVISION                  | COMMENTS |
| cluster-name | 2021-02-20T00:05:10.425154Z | aws-eks | READY  | default   | CLUSTER_PROVISION_COMPLETE |          |

Download Cluster Configuration

Once the cluster is provisioned either using Web Console or CLI, cluster configuration can be downloaded and stored it in a code repository.

./rctl get cluster config cluster-name

The above command will output the cluster config onto stdout. It can be redirected to a file and stored in the code repository of your choice.

./rctl get cluster config cluster-name > cluster-name-config.yaml


Download the cluster configuration only after the cluster is completely provisioned.

Node Groups

Both Managed and Self Managed node groups are supported.

Add Node Groups

You can add a new node group (Spot or On-Demand) to an existing EKS cluster. Here is an example YAML file to add a spot node group to an existing EKS cluster.

kind: ClusterConfig
  name: eks-cluster
  region: us-west-1

  - name: spot-ng-1
    minSize: 2
    maxSize: 4
    volumeType: gp3
      maxPrice: 0.030
      instanceTypes: ["t3.large","t2.large"]
      onDemandBaseCapacity: 0
      onDemandPercentageAboveBaseCapacity: 0
      spotInstancePools: 2

To add a spot node group to an existing cluster based on the config shown above.

./rctl create node-group -f eks-nodegroup.yaml

Scale Node Group

To Scale an existing node group in a cluster

./rctl scale node-group nodegroup-name cluster-name --desired-nodes <node-count>

Drain Node Group

To drain a node group in a cluster

./rctl drain node-group nodegroup-name cluster-name

Node group Labels and Tags

Post Cluster provisioning, users can update Managed Node group Labels and Tags via RCTL

Update Node group labels

To update the node group labels in a cluster

./rctl update nodegroup <node-group-name> <cluster-name> --labels 'k1=v1,k2=v2,k3=v3'

Update Node group tags

To update the node group labels in a cluster

./rctl update nodegroup <node-group-name> <cluster-name> --tags 'k1=v1,k2=v2,k3='

Delete Node Group

To delete a node group from an existing cluster

./rctl delete node-group nodegroup-name cluster-name

Delete Cluster

This will delete the EKS cluster and all associated resources in AWS.

./rctl delete cluster eks-cluster