The vk-scaler component is used to ensure optimal auto scaling capability of Container Service for Kubernetes (ACK) clusters. You can deploy the component in an ACK cluster or in an on-premises Kubernetes cluster. This topic describes how to use vk-scaler to create a pod.

Background information

The vk-scaler component can be used to run pods as serverless container groups in Elastic Container Instance (ECI). The pay-as-you-go billing method is supported. This ensures optimal auto scaling capability and avoids unnecessary resource usage. You do not need to manually configure the capacity for scaling. You can use vk-scaler to improve the efficiency of application deployment and auto scaling and minimize the computing cost in multiple scenarios. These scenarios include Job tasks, continuous integration and delivery (CI/CD), Apache Spark big data computing, and online application auto scaling.

For more information about ECI pods, see ECI configurations.


Use vk-scaler to create a pod

  1. Set permissions.

    When you register an external Kubernetes cluster and before you install the vk-scaler component, set the AccessKey information to grant the registered cluster permissions to access Alibaba Cloud resources. Before you set the AccessKey information, create a RAM user and grant the RAM user permissions to access Alibaba Cloud resources.

    1. Create a RAM user.

      For more information, see Create a RAM user.

    2. Create a policy.
      For more information, see Create a custom policy.
      The following example shows the permission policies of vk-scaler.
          "Version": "1",
          "Statement": [
                  "Action": [
                  "Resource": [
                  "Effect": "Allow"
    3. Grant permissions to the RAM user.

      For more information, see Grant permissions to a RAM user.

    4. Set the AccessKey information for the RAM user.

      For more information, see Obtain an AccessKey pair.

      Run the following command to create the secret for vk-scaler:
      kubectl create nskubectl -n kube-system create secret generic alibaba-addon-secret --from-literal='access-key-id=<your access key id>' --from-literal='access-key-secret=<your access key secret>'

      Replace <your access key id> and <your access key secret> in the command with your AccessKey information.

  2. Install the vk-scaler component.
    1. Log on to the ACK console.
    2. In the left-side navigation pane, click Clusters. On the Clusters page, find the cluster that you want to manage, and choose More > Manage System Components in the Actions column of the cluster.
    3. You are redirected to the Add-ons page. Find the vk-scaler component and click Install for the component.
  3. Create ECI pods.
    vk-scaler allows you to create ECI pods by using one of the following methods:
    • Add the label eci=true to the pods.
      kubectl run nginx --image nginx -l eci=true
    • Add the label eci=true to the namespace.
      kubectl create ns vk
      kubectl label namespace vk eci=true
      kubectl -n vk run nginx --image nginx

    The ack-virtual-node and ack-virtual-kubelet-autoscaler components are no longer updated and maintained. Before you uninstall both components, migrate the ECI pods to the nodes where vk-sclaler is installed.

    Compared with ack-virtual-node, vk-scaler is more compatible with pods. It also provides more efficient auto scaling.