PLEASE NOTE: This document applies to v1.6 version and not to the latest release v1.8

Documentation for other releases can be found by using the version selector in the top right of any doc page.

Adding Google Cloud Platform (GCP) to Crossplane

In this guide, we will walk through the steps necessary to configure your GCP account to be ready for integration with Crossplane. The general steps we will take are summarized below:

For your convenience, the specific steps to accomplish those tasks are provided for you below using either the gcloud command line tool, or the GCP console in a web browser. You can choose whichever you are more comfortable with.

Option 1: gcloud Command Line Tool

If you have the gcloud tool installed, you can run the commands below from the crossplane directory.

Instructions for installing gcloud can be found in the Google docs.


Crossplane provides a helper script for configuring GCP credentials. This script will prompt you for the organization, project, and billing account that will be used by gcloud when creating a project, service account, and credentials file (crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json). The chosen project and created service account will have access to the services and roles sufficient to run the Crossplane GCP examples.

curl -O
# export ORGANIZATION_ID=987654321
# export PROJECT_ID=crossplane-example-1234
# export
# export BASE64ENCODED_GCP_PROVIDER_CREDS=$(base64 crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json | tr -d "\n")

After running, a series of export commands will be shown. Copy and paste the export commands that are provided. These variable names will be referenced throughout the Crossplane examples, generally with a sed command.

You will also find a crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json file in the current working directory. Be sure to remove this file when you are done with the example projects.

Running gcloud by hand

# list your organizations (if applicable), take note of the specific organization ID you want to use
# if you have more than one organization (not common)
gcloud organizations list

# create a new project (project id must be <=30 characters)
export EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID=crossplane-example-123
gcloud projects create $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --enable-cloud-apis # [--organization $ORGANIZATION_ID]

# or, record the PROJECT_ID value of an existing project
# export EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID=$(gcloud projects list --filter NAME=$EXAMPLE_PROJECT_NAME --format="value(PROJECT_ID)")

# link billing to the new project
gcloud beta billing accounts list
gcloud beta billing projects link $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --billing-account=$ACCOUNT_ID

# enable Kubernetes API
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID services enable

# enable CloudSQL API
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID services enable

# enable Redis API
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID services enable

# enable Compute API
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID services enable

# enable Service Networking API
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID services enable

# enable Additional APIs needed for the example or project
# See `gcloud services list` for a complete list

# create service account
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID iam service-accounts create example-123 --display-name "Crossplane Example"

# export service account email
export EXAMPLE_SA="example-123@$"

# create service account key (this will create a `crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json` file in your current working directory)
gcloud --project $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID iam service-accounts keys create --iam-account $EXAMPLE_SA crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json

# assign roles
gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --member "serviceAccount:$EXAMPLE_SA" --role="roles/iam.serviceAccountUser"
gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --member "serviceAccount:$EXAMPLE_SA" --role="roles/cloudsql.admin"
gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --member "serviceAccount:$EXAMPLE_SA" --role="roles/container.admin"
gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --member "serviceAccount:$EXAMPLE_SA" --role="roles/redis.admin"
gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --member "serviceAccount:$EXAMPLE_SA" --role="roles/compute.networkAdmin"
gcloud projects add-iam-policy-binding $EXAMPLE_PROJECT_ID --member "serviceAccount:$EXAMPLE_SA" --role="roles/storage.admin"

Option 2: GCP Console in a Web Browser

If you chose to use the gcloud tool, you can skip this section entirely.

Create a GCP example project which we will use to host our example GKE cluster, as well as our example CloudSQL instance.

Enable Billing

You will need to enable billing for your account in order to create and use Kubernetes clusters with GKE.

Setup GCP ProviderConfig

Before creating any resources, we need to create and configure a GCP cloud ProviderConfig resource in Crossplane, which stores the cloud account information in it. All the requests from Crossplane to GCP will use the credentials attached to this ProviderConfig resource. The following command assumes that you have a crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json file that belongs to the account that will be used by Crossplane, which has GCP project id. You should be able to get the project id from the JSON credentials file or from the GCP console. Without loss of generality, let’s assume the project id is my-cool-gcp-project in this guide.

First, let’s encode the credential file contents and put it in a variable:

# base64 encode the GCP credentials
BASE64ENCODED_GCP_PROVIDER_CREDS=$(base64 crossplane-gcp-provider-key.json | tr -d "\n")

Next, store the project ID of the GCP project in which you would like to provision infrastructure as a variable:

# replace this with your own gcp project id

Finally, store the namespace in which you want to save the provider’s secret as a variable:

# change this namespace value if you want to use a different namespace (e.g. gitlab-managed-apps)

Now we’ll create the Secret resource that contains the credential, and ProviderConfig resource which refers to that secret:

cat > provider.yaml <<EOF
apiVersion: v1
kind: Secret
  name: gcp-account-creds
type: Opaque
kind: ProviderConfig
  name: default
  # replace this with your own gcp project id
  projectID: ${PROJECT_ID}
    source: Secret
      name: gcp-account-creds
      key: credentials

# apply it to the cluster:
kubectl apply -f "provider.yaml"

# delete the credentials

The output will look like the following:

secret/gcp-account-creds created created

Crossplane resources use the ProviderConfig named default if no specific ProviderConfig is specified, so this ProviderConfig will be the default for all GCP resources.