How to get started, and accomplish tasks, using Kubernetes.

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User Guide


As of March 14, 2017, the Kubernetes SIG-Docs-Maintainers group have begun migration of the User Guide content as announced previously to the SIG Docs community through the kubernetes-sig-docs group and #sig-docs channel.

The user guides within this section are being refactored into topics within Tutorials, Tasks, and Concepts. Anything that has been moved will have a notice placed in its previous location as well as a link to its new location. The reorganization implements a new table of contents and should improve the documentation's findability and readability for a wider range of audiences.

For any questions, please contact:

The Kubernetes Guides can help you work with various aspects of the Kubernetes system.

Kubernetes User Guide

The following topics in the Kubernetes User Guide can help you run applications and services on a Kubernetes cluster:

  1. Quick start: launch and expose an application
  2. Configuring and launching containers: configuring common container parameters
  3. Deploying continuously running applications
  4. Connecting applications: exposing applications to clients and users
  5. Working with containers in production
  6. Managing deployments
  7. Application introspection and debugging
    1. Using the Kubernetes web user interface
    2. Logging
    3. Monitoring
    4. Getting into containers via exec
    5. Connecting to containers via proxies
    6. Connecting to containers via port forwarding

Before running examples in the user guides, please ensure you have completed installing kubectl.

Kubernetes Concepts

A cluster is a set of physical or virtual machines and other infrastructure resources used by Kubernetes to run your applications.
A node is a physical or virtual machine running Kubernetes, onto which pods can be scheduled.
A pod is a co-located group of containers and volumes.
A label is a key/value pair that is attached to a resource, such as a pod, to convey a user-defined identifying attribute. Labels can be used to organize and to select subsets of resources.
A selector is an expression that matches labels in order to identify related resources, such as which pods are targeted by a load-balanced service.
Replication Controller
A replication controller ensures that a specified number of pod replicas are running at any one time. It both allows for easy scaling of replicated systems and handles re-creation of a pod when the machine it is on reboots or otherwise fails.
A service defines a set of pods and a means by which to access them, such as single stable IP address and corresponding DNS name.
A volume is a directory, possibly with some data in it, which is accessible to a Container as part of its filesystem. Kubernetes volumes build upon Docker Volumes, adding provisioning of the volume directory and/or device.
A secret stores sensitive data, such as authentication tokens, which can be made available to containers upon request.
A user- or client-provided name for a resource.
A namespace is like a prefix to the name of a resource. Namespaces help different projects, teams, or customers to share a cluster, such as by preventing name collisions between unrelated teams.
A key/value pair that can hold larger (compared to a label), and possibly not human-readable, data, intended to store non-identifying auxiliary data, especially data manipulated by tools and system extensions. Efficient filtering by annotation values is not supported.

Further reading

API resources

Pods and containers


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