The Kong Ingress Controller configures Kong Gateway using Ingress or Gateway API resources created inside a Kubernetes cluster.
Kong Ingress Controller enables you to configure plugins, load balance the services, check the health of the Pods, and leverage all that Kong offers in a standalone installation.
The Kong Ingress Controller does not proxy any traffic directly. It configures Kong Gateway using Kubernetes resources.
The figure illustrates how Kong Ingress Controller works:
The Controller listens for the changes inside the Kubernetes cluster and updates Kong in response to those changes. So that it can correctly proxy all the traffic. Kong is updated dynamically to respond to changes around scaling, configuration, and failures that occur inside a Kubernetes cluster.
For more information on how Kong works with routes, services, and upstreams,
please see the proxy and load balancing documentation.
In Kubernetes, there are several concepts that are used to logically identify workloads and route traffic between them.
Service / Pods
A Service inside Kubernetes is a way to abstract an application that is running on a set of Pods. This maps to two objects in Kong: Service and Upstream.
The service object in Kong holds the information of the protocol to use to talk to the upstream service and various other protocol specific settings. The Upstream object defines load-balancing and health-checking behavior.
Pods associated with a Service in Kubernetes map as a target belonging to the upstream, where the upstream corresponds to the Kubernetes Service in Kong. Kong load balances across the Pods of your service. This means that all requests flowing through Kong are not directed through kube-proxy but directly to the Pod.
Gateway API resources can also be used to produce running instances and configurations for Kong Gateway.
The main concepts here are:
- A Gateway resource in Kubernetes describes how traffic
can be translated to services within the cluster.
- A GatewayClass defines a set of Gateways that share
a common configuration and behaviour.
Each GatewayClass is handled by a single controller, although controllers
may handle more than one GatewayClass.
HTTPRoute can be attached to a Gateway which
configures the HTTP routing behavior.
For more information about Gateway API resources and features supported by Kong Ingress Controller, see
An Ingress resource in Kubernetes defines a set of rules for proxying traffic. These rules correspond to the concept of a route in Kong.
This image describes the relationship between Kubernetes concepts and Kong’s Ingress configuration.