PLEASE NOTE: This document applies to v0.14 version and not to the latest release v1.1Documentation for other releases can be found by using the version selector in the top right of any doc page.
Managed resources are the Crossplane representation of the cloud provider resources and they are considered primitive low level custom resources that can be used directly to provision external cloud resources for an application or as part of an infrastructure composition.
RDSInstance in AWS Provider corresponds to an actual RDS Instance
in AWS. There is a one-to-one relationship and the changes on managed resources
are reflected directly on the corresponding resource in the provider.
You can browse API Reference to discover all available managed resources.
Crossplane API conventions extend the Kubernetes API conventions for the schema
of Crossplane managed resources. Following is an example of
apiVersion: database.aws.crossplane.io/v1beta1 kind: RDSInstance metadata: name: foodb spec: forProvider: dbInstanceClass: db.t2.small masterUsername: root allocatedStorage: 20 engine: mysql writeConnectionSecretToRef: name: mysql-secret namespace: crossplane-system providerConfigRef: name: default reclaimPolicy: Delete
spec top field represents the desired state of the user.
Crossplane adheres to that and has its own conventions about how the fields
spec should look like.
writeConnectionSecretToRef: A reference to the secret that you want this
managed resource to write its connection secret that you’d be able to mount to
your pods in the same namespace. For
RDSInstance, this secret would contain
providerConfigRef: Reference to the
ProviderConfig resource that will
provide information regarding authentication of Crossplane to the provider.
ProviderConfig resources refer to
Secret and potentially contain other
information regarding authentication. The
providerConfigRef is defaulted to
default if omitted.
deletionPolicy: Enum to specify whether the actual cloud resource should be
deleted when this managed resource is deleted in Kubernetes API server.
Possible values are
Delete (the default) and
forProvider: While the rest of the fields relate to how Crossplane should
behave, the fields under
forProvider are solely used to configure the actual
external resource. In most of the cases, the field names correspond to the
what exists in provider’s API Reference.
The objects under
forProvider field can get huge depending on the provider
API. For example, GCP
ServiceAccount has only a few fields while GCP
CloudSQLInstance has over 100 fields that you can configure.
Crossplane closely follows the Kubernetes API versioning
conventions for the CRDs that it deploys. In short, for
vX versions, you can expect that either automatic migration or
instructions for manual migration will be provided when a new version of that
CRD schema is released.
In general, managed resources are high fidelity resources meaning they will
provide parameters and behaviors that are provided by the external resource API.
This applies to grouping of resources, too. For example,
Queue appears under
sqs API group in AWS,so, its
Kind look like the following:
apiVersion: sqs.aws.crossplane.io/v1beta1 kind: Queue
As a general rule, managed resource controllers try not to make any decision that is not specified by the user in the desired state since managed resources are the lowest level primitives that operate directly on the cloud provider APIs.
Crossplane providers continuously reconcile the managed resource to achieve the
desired state. The parameters under
spec are considered the one and only
source of truth for the external resource. This means that if someone changed a
configuration in the UI of the provider, like AWS Console, Crossplane will
change it back to what’s given under
There are configuration parameters in external resources that cloud providers do
not allow to be changed. If the corresponding field in the managed resource is
changed by the user, Crossplane submits the new desired state to the provider
and returns the error, if any. For example, in AWS, you cannot change the region
Some infrastructure tools such as Terraform delete and recreate the resource to
accommodate those changes but Crossplane does not take that route. Unless the
managed resource is deleted and its
Delete, its controller
never deletes the external resource in the provider.
Immutable fields are marked as
immutablein Crossplane codebase but Kubernetes does not yet have immutable field notation in CRDs.
By default the name of the managed resource is used as the name of the external
cloud resource that will show up in your cloud console. To specify a different
external name, Crossplane has a special annotation to represent the name of the
external resource. For example, I would like to have a
an external name that is different than its managed resource name:
apiVersion: database.gcp.crossplane.io/v1beta1 kind: CloudSQLInstance metadata: name: foodb annotations: crossplane.io/external-name: my-special-db spec: ...
When you create this managed resource, you will see that the name of
CloudSQLInstance in GCP console will be
If the annotation is not given, Crossplane will fill it with the name of the
managed resource by default. In cases where provider doesn’t allow you to name
the resource, like AWS VPC, the controller creates the resource and sets
external annotation to be the name that the cloud provider chose. So, you would
see something like
vpc-28dsnh3 as the value of
annotation of your AWS
VPC resource even if you added your own custom external
name during creation.
For some of the optional fields, users rely on the default that the cloud
provider chooses for them. Since Crossplane treats the managed resource as the
source of the truth, values of those fields need to exist in
spec of the
managed resource. So, in each reconciliation, Crossplane will fill the value of
a field that is left empty by the user but is assigned a value by the provider.
For example, there could be two fields like
you might want to give only
region and leave the availability zone to be
chosen by the cloud provider. In that case, if the provider assigns an
availability zone, Crossplane gets that value and fills
that if the field is already filled, the controller won’t override its value.
When a deletion request is made for a managed resource, its controller starts
the deletion process immediately. However, the managed resource is kept in the
Kubernetes API (via a finalizer) until the controller confirms the external
resource in the cloud is gone. So you can be sure that if the managed resource
is deleted, then the external cloud resource is also deleted. Any errors that
happen during deletion will be added to the
status of the managed resource, so
you can troubleshoot any issues.
In many cases, an external resource refers to another one for a specific configuration. For example, you could want your Azure Kubernetes cluster in a specific Virtual Network. External resources have specific fields for these relations, however, they usually require the information to be supplied in different formats. In Azure MySQL, you might be required to enter only the name of the Virtual Network while in Azure Kubernetes, it could be required to enter a string in a specific format that includes other information such as resource group name.
In Crossplane, users have 3 fields to refer to another resource. Here is an example from Azure MySQL managed resource referring to a Azure Resource Group:
spec: forProvider: resourceGroupName: foo-res-group resourceGroupNameRef: name: resourcegroup resourceGroupNameSelector: matchLabels: app: prod
In this example, the user provided only a set of labels to select a
ResourceGroup managed resource that already exists in the cluster via
resourceGroupNameSelector. Then after a specific
ResourceGroup is selected,
resourceGroupNameRef is filled with the name of that
resource. Then in the last step, Crossplane fills the actual
field with whatever format Azure accepts it. Once a dependency is resolved, the
controller never changes it.
Users are able to specify any of these three fields:
It’s important to note that in case a reference exists, the managed resource
does not create the external resource until the referenced object is ready. In
this example, creation call of Azure MySQL Server will not be made until
ResourceGroup has its
Ready to be true.
If you have some resources that are already provisioned in the cloud provider, you can import them as managed resources and let Crossplane manage them. What you need to do is to enter the name of the external resource as well as the required fields on the managed resource. For example, let’s say I have a GCP Network provisioned from GCP console and I would like to migrate it to Crossplane. Here is the YAML that I need to create:
apiVersion: compute.gcp.crossplane.io/v1beta1 kind: Network metadata: name: foo-network annotations: crossplane.io/external-name: existing-network spec: providerConfigRef: name: default
Crossplane will check whether a GCP Network called
and if it does, then the optional fields under
forProvider will be filled with
the values that are fetched from the provider.
Note that if a resource has required fields, you must fill those fields or the creation of the managed resource will be rejected. So, in those cases, you will need to enter the name of the resource as well as the required fields as indicated in the API Reference documentation.
Crossplane adheres to Kubernetes conventions as much as possible and one of the advantages we gain is backup & restore ability with tools that work with native Kubernetes types, like Velero.
If you’d like to backup and restore manually, you can simply export them and
save YAMLs in your file system. When you reload them, as we’ve discovered in
import section, their
crosssplane.io/external-name annotation and required
fields are there and those are enough to import a resource. The tool you’re
using needs to store
spec fields, which most tools do