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Static Pods

Using Talos Linux to set up static pods in Kubernetes.

Static Pods

Static pods are run directly by the kubelet bypassing the Kubernetes API server checks and validations. Most of the time DaemonSet is a better alternative to static pods, but some workloads need to run before the Kubernetes API server is available or might need to bypass security restrictions imposed by the API server.

See Kubernetes documentation for more information on static pods.


Static pod definitions are specified in the Talos machine configuration:

    - apiVersion: v1
       kind: Pod
         name: nginx
           - name: nginx
             image: nginx

Talos renders static pod definitions to the kubelet manifest directory (/etc/kubernetes/manifests), kubelet picks up the definition and launches the pod.

Talos accepts changes to the static pod configuration without a reboot.


Kubelet mirrors pod definition to the API server state, so static pods can be inspected with kubectl get pods, logs can be retrieved with kubectl logs, etc.

$ kubectl get pods
NAME                           READY   STATUS    RESTARTS   AGE
nginx-talos-default-controlplane-2   1/1     Running   0          17s

If the API server is not available, status of the static pod can also be inspected with talosctl containers --kubernetes:

$ talosctl containers --kubernetes
NODE         NAMESPACE   ID                                                                                      IMAGE                                                   PID    STATUS      default/nginx-talos-default-controlplane-2                                                                   4886   SANDBOX_READY      └─ default/nginx-talos-default-controlplane-2:nginx:4183a7d7a771              

Logs of static pods can be retrieved with talosctl logs --kubernetes:

$ talosctl logs --kubernetes default/nginx-talos-default-controlplane-2:nginx:4183a7d7a771 2022-02-10T15:26:01.289208227Z stderr F 2022/02/10 15:26:01 [notice] 1#1: using the "epoll" event method 2022-02-10T15:26:01.2892466Z stderr F 2022/02/10 15:26:01 [notice] 1#1: nginx/1.21.6 2022-02-10T15:26:01.28925723Z stderr F 2022/02/10 15:26:01 [notice] 1#1: built by gcc 10.2.1 20210110 (Debian 10.2.1-6)


Talos doesn’t perform any validation on the static pod definitions. If the pod isn’t running, use kubelet logs (talosctl logs kubelet) to find the problem:

$ talosctl logs kubelet {"ts":1644505520281.427,"caller":"config/file.go:187","msg":"Could not process manifest file","path":"/etc/kubernetes/manifests/talos-default-nginx-gvisor.yaml","err":"invalid pod: [spec.containers: Required value]"}

Resource Definitions

Static pod definitions are available as StaticPod resources combined with Talos-generated control plane static pods:

$ talosctl get staticpods
NODE         NAMESPACE   TYPE        ID                        VERSION   k8s         StaticPod   default-nginx             1   k8s         StaticPod   kube-apiserver            1   k8s         StaticPod   kube-controller-manager   1   k8s         StaticPod   kube-scheduler            1

Talos assigns ID <namespace>-<name> to the static pods specified in the machine configuration.

On control plane nodes status of the running static pods is available in the StaticPodStatus resource:

$ talosctl get staticpodstatus
NODE         NAMESPACE   TYPE              ID                                                           VERSION   READY   k8s         StaticPodStatus   default/nginx-talos-default-controlplane-2                         2         True   k8s         StaticPodStatus   kube-system/kube-apiserver-talos-default-controlplane-2            2         True   k8s         StaticPodStatus   kube-system/kube-controller-manager-talos-default-controlplane-2   3         True   k8s         StaticPodStatus   kube-system/kube-scheduler-talos-default-controlplane-2            3         True