How to expand Kubernetes Physical Volume Claim (PVC)

Important note: By default, volumes will not be resized immediately but instead require a restart of the associated pod.

First, ensure that you have set allowVolumeExpansion: true for the storage class of your PVC. See our previous post on How to allow Physical Volume Claim (PVC) resize for Kubernetes storage class for more details.

We can expand the volume (named myapp-myapp-pvc-myapp-myapp-1 in this example) by running

kubectl patch pvc/"myapp-myapp-pvc-myapp-myapp-1" \
  --namespace "default" \
  --patch '{"spec": {"resources": {"requests": {"storage": "40Gi"}}}}'

Ensure that you have replaced  the name of the PVC (myapp-myapp-pvc-myapp-myapp-1 in this example) and the storage size. It’s only possible to increase the size of the volume / expand it and not to downsize / shrink it. If your size is less than the previous value, you’ll see this error message:

The PersistentVolumeClaim "myapp-myapp-pvc-myapp-myapp-1" is invalid: Forbidden: field can not be less than previous value

After running this command, the PVC will be in the FileSystemResizePending state.

In order for the update to have effect, you’ll need to force Kubernetes to re-create all the pods for your deployment. To find out how to do this, read our post on How to force restarting all Pods in a Kubernetes Deployment.

For reference, see the official documentation on expanding persistent volumes

How to force restarting all Pods in a Kubernetes Deployment

In contrast to classical deployment managers like systemd or pm2, Kubernetes does not provide a simple restart my application command.

However there’s an easy workaround: If you chance anything in your configuration, even innocuous things that don’t have any effect, Kubernetes will restart your pods.

Consider configuring a rolling update strategy before doing this if you are updating a production application that should have minimal downtime.

In this example we’ll assume you have a StatefulSet your want to update and it’s named elasticsearch-elasticsearch. Be sure to fill in the actual name of your deployment here.

kubectl patch statefulset/elasticsearch-elasticsearch -p \
  "{\"spec\":{\"template\":{\"metadata\":{\"annotations\":{\"dummy-date\":\"`date +'%s'`\"}}}}}"

This will just set a dummy-date annotation which does not have any effect.

You can monitor the update by

kubectl rollout status statefulset/elasticsearch-elasticsearch

Credits for the original solution idea to pstadler on GitHub.

How to allow Physical Volume Claim (PVC) resize for Kubernetes storage class

The prerequisite for resizing a Kubernetes Physical Volume Claim is that you allow volume expansion in the storage class the PVC belongs to (standard storage class for this example).

We can allow this by setting allowVolumeExpansion: true for that storage class.

Patching the configuration on-the-go can easily be done using

kubectl patch storageclass/"standard" \
  --namespace "default" \
  --patch '{"allowVolumeExpansion": true}'

Remember that you might need to adjust your storage class and namespace depending on which ones you used. For any standard configuration, however, the namespace default and the storage class standard will be the ones you need.

How to configure Google Cloud Kubernetes Elasticsearch Cluster with internal load balancer

Google Cloud offers a convenient way of installing an ElasticSearch cluster on top of a Google Cloud Kubernetes cluster. However, the documentation tells you to expose the ElasticSearch instance using

kubectl patch service/"elasticsearch-elasticsearch-svc" \
  --namespace "default" \
  --patch '{"spec": {"type": "LoadBalancer"}}'

However this command will expost ElasticSearch to an external IP which will make it publically accessible in the default configuration.

Here’s the equivalent command that will expose ElasticSearch to an internal load balancer with an internal IP address that will only be available from Google Cloud.

kubectl patch service/"elasticsearch-elasticsearch-svc" \
  --namespace "default" \
  --patch '{"spec": {"type": "LoadBalancer"}, "metadata": {"annotations": {"": "Internal"}}}'

You might need to replace the name of your service (elasticsearch-elasticsearch-svc in this example) and possibly your namespace.


How to install MicroK8S (MicroKubernetes) on Ubuntu in 30 seconds

This set of commands will install & start MikroK8S (MikroKubernetes) on Ubuntu and similar Linux distributions.

sudo snap install microk8s --classic
sudo snap install kubectl --classic
sudo microk8s.enable # Autostart on boot
sudo microk8s.start # Start right now
# Wait until microk8s has started
until microk8s.status ; do sleep 1 ; done
# Enable some standard modules
microk8s.enable dashboard registry istio

For reference see the official quickstart manual.

How to fix kubectl unknown shorthand flag: ‘f’ in -f


You want to run a Kubernetes kubectl command like

kubectl -f my-app-deployment.yaml

but you see this error message after kubectl prints its entire help page:

unknown shorthand flag: 'f' in -f


You are missing an actual command to kubectl. Most likely you want create something on your Kubernetes instance, in which case you want to run this instead:

kubectl create -f my-app-deployment.yaml

You might also want to apply or replace your config instead. Note that apply does not automatically restart your Kubernetes Pods. Read How to fix Kubernetes kubectl apply not restarting pods for more information.

How to fix Kubernetes kubectl apply not restarting pods


You made an update to your Kubernetes YAML configuration which you applied with

kubectl apply -f [YAML filename]

but Kubernetes still keeps the old version of the software running.


Instead of kubectl apply -f ... use

kubectl replace --force -f [YAML filename]

This will update the configuration on the server and also update the running pods.

Original answer on StackOverflow

How to fix kubectl Unable to connect to the server: dial tcp …:443: i/o timeout


You want to create or edit a Kubernetes service but when running e.g.

kubectl create -f my-service.yml

you see an error message similar to this:

Unable to connect to the server: dial tcp i/o timeout


There are three common reasons for this issue:

  1. Your Kubernetes cluster is not running. Verify that your cluster has been started, e.g. by pinging the IP address.
  2. There are networking issues that prevent you from accessing the cluster. Verify that you can ping the IP and try to track down whether there is a firewall in place preventing the access
  3. You have configured a cluster that does not exist any more.

In case of Google Cloud Kubernetes, case (3) can easily be fixed by configuring Kubernetes to use your current cluster:

gcloud container clusters get-credentials [cluster name] --zone [zone]

This will automatically update the default cluster for kubectl.

In case you don’t know the correct cluster name and zone, use

gcloud container clusters list

How to fix kubectl ‘The connection to the server localhost:8080 was refused – did you specify the right host or port?’


You want to configure a Kubernetes service using kubectl using a command like

kubectl patch service/"my-elasticsearch-svc" --namespace "default"   --patch '{"spec": {"type": "LoadBalancer"}}'

but you only see this error message:

The connection to the server localhost:8080 was refused - did you specify the right host or port?


Kubernetes does not have the correct credentials to access the cluster.

Add the correct credentials to the kubectl config using

gcloud container clusters get-credentials [cluster name] --zone [cluster zone]


gcloud container clusters get-credentials cluster-1 --zone europe-west3-c

After that, retry your original command.

In case you don’t know your cluster name or zone, use

gcloud container clusters list

to display the cluster metadata.

Credits to this StackOverflow answer for the original solution.

How to install kubectl on Ubuntu


You want to run the Kubernetes kubectl command on Ubuntu but you see an error message like this:

command not found: kubectl


Install kubectl using snap:

sudo snap install kubectl --classic

After this command has finished installing kubectl, in most cases you can use it immediately. In case you still get the command not found: kubectl error message, run $SHELL to reload your shell and check if /snap/bin is in your $PATH environment variable.