In this tutorial, I will show you how to setup lightweigth kubernetes cluster using rancher k3s.

My current Raspberry PI 4 configuration:

Hostname RAM CPU Disk IP Address
k3s-master-1 8GB 4 64GB
k3s-worker-node-1 8GB 4 64GB
k3s-worker-node-2 8GB 4 64GB


  1. Ubuntu OS 20.04. Follow guide on here.
  2. Assign static IP address to PI.
sudo vi /etc/netplan/50-cloud-init.yaml

set values as shown below:

  • dhcp set value from true to no.
  • As shown below added 5-9 lines below dhcp, change IP address as per your network setup and save the file.
            dhcp4: no
              addresses: [,,]
                driver: bcmgenet smsc95xx lan78xx
            optional: true
            set-name: eth0
    version: 2

Apply changes by executing below command to set static IP:

sudo netplan apply

NOTE: Once you apply changes, your ssh session will be interupted. Make sure to reconnect using ssh.

  1. Open sudo vi /boot/firmware/cmdline.txt in edit mode and enter below value and apply this same change on each master and work nodes:
cgroup_enable=cpuset cgroup_enable=memory cgroup_memory=1

Mine looks like below.

net.ifnames=0 dwc_otg.lpm_enable=0 console=serial0,115200 console=tty1 root=LABEL=writable rootfstype=ext4 elevator=deadline rootwait fixrtc cgroup_enable=cpuset cgroup_enable=memory cgroup_memory=1
  1. reboot
sudo init 6

Getting started with HA setup for Master nodes

Before we proceed with the tutorial, please make sure you have mysql database configured. We will use mysql to setup HA.

On each master node, execute below command to setup k3s cluster

curl -sfL | sh -s - server   --datastore-endpoint="mysql://username:password@tcp("

Once the installation is completed, execute below command to see the status of the k3s service.

 Loaded: loaded (/etc/systemd/system/k3s.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
     Active: active (running) since Sun 2020-10-25 04:38:00 UTC; 32s ago
    Process: 1696 ExecStartPre=/sbin/modprobe br_netfilter (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
    Process: 1720 ExecStartPre=/sbin/modprobe overlay (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
   Main PID: 1725 (k3s-server)
      Tasks: 13
     Memory: 425.1M
     CGroup: /system.slice/k3s.service
             ├─1725 /usr/local/bin/k3s server --datastore-endpoint=mysql://username:password@tcp(
             └─1865 containerd -c /var/lib/rancher/k3s/agent/etc/containerd/config.toml -a /run/k3s/containerd/containerd.sock --state /run/k3s/containerd -->

Joining worker nodes to k3s cluster

  1. First, we need to get a token from master node. Go to your master node and enter below command to get token:
sudo cat /var/lib/rancher/k3s/server/node-token
  1. Second, we are ready to join all the nodes to the cluster by entering below command and replace XXX token with your own:
curl -sfL | K3S_URL= K3S_TOKEN=XXX sh -
  1. Check the status of your worker node status from master node by executing below coommand:
sudo kubectl get nodes
ubuntu@k3s-master-1:~$ sudo kubectl get nodes
NAME                STATUS   ROLES    AGE   VERSION
k3s-worker-node-2   Ready    <none>   28m   v1.18.9+k3s1
k3s-master-1        Ready    master   9h    v1.18.9+k3s1
k3s-worker-node-1   Ready    <none>   32m   v1.18.9+k3s1
k3s-master-2        Ready    master   9h    v1.18.9+k3s1