Bootstrapping an API Platform

2023-02-20 11:19

The Goal

  • Be able to surface API's to the internet at
  • Host services on Kubernetes
  • Nearly 100% automation with GitOps
  • Production-like (or maybe production-lite is a better phrase)
  • Cheap to run


  • Kubernetes will be Linode Kubernetes Engine - it's cheap and uncomplicated.
  • Linode also offers automation for adding block storage for persistent volume claims, and creating load balancers for that service type
  • ArgoCD will manage my GitOps requirements

Setting up the cluster

I requested a new cluster via their console. Linode is offering a $100 credit over 2 months, so I want to stay close to $50/month.

2 Shared CPU Linode 4GB nodes @ $20/node/month
2 planned Load Balancers @ $10/month (one for kong hybrid, one for kic)
2 Planned 10GB Storage Volumes @ $1/month

Estimated Cost: $62/month

I will be sure I can spin these up/down easily before my $100 credit runs out.

Next I attached firewalls to the kubernetes nodes. I followed the advice offered in this support answer from linode and applied the following rules:

TCP port 10250 from Accept, Kubelet health checks
UDP port 51820 from Accept, Wireguard tunneling for kubectl proxy
TCP port 179 from Accept, Calico BGP traffic
TCP/UDP port 30000 - 32767 Accept, NodePorts for workload Services
TCP All Ports All IPv4/All IPv6 Drop, Block all other TCP traffic
UDP All Ports All IPv4/All IPv6 Drop, Block all other UDP traffic
ICMP All Ports All IPv4/All IPv6 Drop, Block all ICMP traffic

Setting up ArgoCD

I want to have all of my apps and charts in a single repository, including overrides to 3rd party charts. Therefore, I chose the 'app of apps' pattern using ArgoCD. This pattern as well as other useful information about setting up ArgoCD can be found on this post.

The 'App of Apps' is an argo application that points to a directory of kubternetes resources, which also happen to be ArgoCD Application CRDs.

It will work like this:

  • Create an "" repository with an argocd/apps folder to contain Application definitions
  • Add an app called 'argocd apps' to the argocd/apps directory, with its source definition pointing to the same repo and directory
        path: argocd/apps/
        repoURL: ''
  • Manually Install ArgoCD on the cluster (using core mode to save resources)
kubectl create namespace argocd
kubectl apply -n argocd -f
  • Manually apply the 'App of Apps' application to the cluster's argocd namespace

The app definition was committed here.

Wrapping Up

To access argo in 'core' mode I installed the argocd cli and ran argocd login --core while having my kube context and namespace set to the argocd namespace of the linode k8s cluster.

I started up the argocd dashboard and could see the argocd-apps application was healthy.

As a test, I push a new application to the argocd-apps directory of my source repository, and see it appear in ArgoCD. I then removed the commit from the repository.

Next Steps

  • Add Kong proxy in hybrid mode using Konnect for a Control Plane
  • Add a KIC and replicate the konnect-defined routes as native k8s ingresses
  • Automate DNS and Certificate management

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