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Post-Create Initialization of Machine Instance


Today the driver.Driver facade represents the boundary between the the machine-controller and its various provider specific implementations.

We have abstract operations for creation/deletion and listing of machines (actually compute instances) but we do not correctly handle post-creation initialization logic. Nor do we provide an abstract operation to represent the hot update of an instance after creation.

We have found this to be necessary for several use cases. Today in the MCM AWS Provider, we already misuse driver.GetMachineStatus which is supposed to be a read-only operation obtaining the status of an instance.

  1. Each AWS EC2 instance performs source/destination checks by default. For EC2 NAT instances these should be disabled. This is done by issuing a ModifyInstanceAttribute request with the SourceDestCheck set to false. The MCM AWS Provider, decodes the AWSProviderSpec, reads providerSpec.SrcAndDstChecksEnabled and correspondingly issues the call to modify the already launched instance. However, this should be done as an action after creating the instance and should not be part of the VM status retrieval.

  2. Similarly, there is a pending PR to add the Ipv6AddessCount and Ipv6PrefixCount to enable the assignment of an ipv6 address and an ipv6 prefix to instances. This requires constructing and issuing an AssignIpv6Addresses request after the EC2 instance is available.

  3. We have other uses-cases such as MCM Issue#750 where there is a requirement to provide a way for consumers to add tags which can be hot-updated onto instances. This requirement can be generalized to also offer a convenient way to specify tags which can be applied to VMs, NICs, Devices etc.

  4. We have a need for “machine-instance-not-ready” taint as described in MCM#740 which should only get removed once the post creation updates are finished.


We will split the fulfilment of this overall need into 2 stages of implementation.

  1. Stage-A: Support post-VM creation initialization logic of the instance suing a proposed Driver.InitializeMachine by permitting provider implementors to add initialization logic after VM creation, return with special new error code codes.Initialization for initialization errors and correspondingly support a new machine operation stage InstanceInitialization which will be updated in the machine LastOperation. The triggerCreationFlow - a reconciliation sub-flow of the MCM responsible for orchestrating instance creation and updating machine status will be changed to support this behaviour.

  2. Stage-B: Introduction of Driver.UpdateMachine and enhancing the MCM, MCM providers and gardener extension providers to support hot update of instances through Driver.UpdateMachine. The MCM triggerUpdationFlow - a reconciliation sub-flow of the MCM which is supposed to be responsible for orchestrating instance update - but currently not used, will be updated to invoke the provider Driver.UpdateMachine on hot-updates to to the Machine object

Stage-A Proposal

Current MCM triggerCreationFlow

Today, reconcileClusterMachine which is the main routine for the Machine object reconciliation invokes triggerCreationFlow at the end when the machine.Spec.ProviderID is empty or if the machine.Status.CurrentStatus.Phase is empty or in CrashLoopBackOff

%%{ init: {
        { 'fontSize': '12px'}
} }%%
flowchart LR

-->chk{"machine ProviderID empty
Phase empty or CrashLoopBackOff ?
chk--noo-->LongRetry["return machineutils.LongRetry"]

Today, the triggerCreationFlow is illustrated below with some minor details omitted/compressed for brevity


  • The lastop below is an abbreviation for machine.Status.LastOperation. This, along with the machine phase is generally updated on the Machine object just before returning from the method.
  • regarding phase=CrashLoopBackOff|Failed. the machine phase may either be CrashLoopBackOff or move to Failed if the difference between current time and the machine.CreationTimestamp has exceeded the configured MachineCreationTimeout.
%%{ init: {
        { 'fontSize': '12px'}
} }%%
flowchart TD

begin((" "))
medretry["return MediumRetry, err"]
shortretry["return ShortRetry, err"]

-->chkstatuserr{"Check statusErr"}
chkstatuserr--notFound-->chknodelbl{"Chk Node Label"}
chkstatuserr--nil-->initnodename["nodeName = statusResp.NodeName"]-->setnodename

chknodelbl--notset-->createmachine["createResp, createErr=driver.CreateMachine(...)"]-->chkCreateErr{"Check createErr"}


chkCreateErr--nil-->getnodename["nodeName = createResp.NodeName"]
-->chkstalenode{"nodeName != machine.Name\n//chk stale node"}
chkstalenode--false-->setnodename["if unset machine.Labels['node']= nodeName"]
-->machinepending["if empty/crashloopbackoff lastop.type=Create,lastop.State=Processing,phase=Pending"]


subgraph noteA [" "]
    permafail -.- note1(["VM was referring to stale node obj"])
style noteA opacity:0

subgraph noteB [" "]
    setnodename-.- note2(["Proposal: Introduce Driver.InitializeMachine after this"])

Enhancement of MCM triggerCreationFlow

Relevant Observations on Current Flow

  1. Observe that we always perform a call to Driver.GetMachineStatus and only then conditionally perform a call to Driver.CreateMachine if there was was no machine found.
  2. Observe that after the call to a successful Driver.CreateMachine, the machine phase is set to Pending, the LastOperation.Type is currently set to Create and the LastOperation.State set to Processing before returning with a ShortRetry. The LastOperation.Description is (unfortunately) set to the fixed message: Creating machine on cloud provider.
  3. Observe that after an erroneous call to Driver.CreateMachine, the machine phase is set to CrashLoopBackOff or Failed (in case of creation timeout).

The following changes are proposed with a view towards minimal impact on current code and no introduction of a new Machine Phase.

MCM Changes

  1. We propose introducing a new machine operation Driver.InitializeMachine with the following signature
    type Driver interface {
        // .. existing methods are omitted for brevity.
        // InitializeMachine call is responsible for post-create initialization of the provider instance.
        InitializeMachine(context.Context, *InitializeMachineRequest) error
    // InitializeMachineRequest is the initialization request for machine instance initialization
    type InitializeMachineRequest struct {
        // Machine object whose VM instance should be initialized 
        Machine *v1alpha1.Machine
        // MachineClass backing the machine object
        MachineClass *v1alpha1.MachineClass
        // Secret backing the machineClass object
        Secret *corev1.Secret
  2. We propose introducing a new MC error code codes.Initialization indicating that the VM Instance was created but there was an error in initialization after VM creation. The implementor of Driver.InitializeMachine can return this error code, indicating that InitializeMachine needs to be called again. The Machine Controller will change the phase to CrashLoopBackOff as usual when encountering a codes.Initialization error.
  3. We will introduce a new machine operation stage InstanceInitialization. In case of an codes.Initialization error
    1. the machine.Status.LastOperation.Description will be set to InstanceInitialization,
    2. machine.Status.LastOperation.ErrorCode will be set to codes.Initialization
    3. the LastOperation.Type will be set to Create
    4. the LastOperation.State set to Failed before returning with a ShortRetry
  4. The semantics of Driver.GetMachineStatus will be changed. If the instance associated with machine exists, but the instance was not initialized as expected, the provider implementations of GetMachineStatus should return an error: status.Error(codes.Initialization).
  5. If Driver.GetMachineStatus returned an error encapsulating codes.Initialization then Driver.InitializeMachine will be invoked again in the triggerCreationFlow.
  6. As according to the usual logic, the main machine controller reconciliation loop will now re-invoke the triggerCreationFlow again if the machine phase is CrashLoopBackOff.


Enhanced triggerCreationFlow

AWS Provider Changes


The implementation for the AWS Provider will look something like:

  1. After the VM instance is available, check providerSpec.SrcAndDstChecksEnabled, construct ModifyInstanceAttributeInput and call ModifyInstanceAttribute. In case of an error return codes.Initialization instead of the current codes.Internal
  2. Check providerSpec.NetworkInterfaces and if Ipv6PrefixCount is not nil, then construct AssignIpv6AddressesInput and call AssignIpv6Addresses. In case of an error return codes.Initialization. Don’t use the generic codes.Internal

The existing Ipv6 PR will need modifications.

  1. If providerSpec.SrcAndDstChecksEnabled is false, check ec2.Instance.SourceDestCheck. If it does not match then return status.Error(codes.Initialization)
  2. Check providerSpec.NetworkInterfaces and if Ipv6PrefixCount is not nil, check ec2.Instance.NetworkInterfaces and check if InstanceNetworkInterface.Ipv6Addresses has a non-nil slice. If this is not the case then return status.Error(codes.Initialization)

Instance Not Ready Taint

  • Due to the fact that creation flow for machines will now be enhanced to correctly support post-creation startup logic, we should not scheduled workload until this startup logic is complete. Even without this feature we have a need for such a taint as described in MCM#740
  • We propose a new taint node.machine.sapcloud.io/instance-not-ready which will be added as a node startup taint in gardener core KubeletConfiguration.RegisterWithTaints
  • The will will then removed by MCM in health check reconciliation, once the machine becomes fully ready. (when moving to Running phase)
  • We will add this taint as part of --ignore-taint in CA
  • We will introduce a disclaimer / prerequisite in the MCM FAQ, to add this taint as part of kubelet config under --register-with-taints, otherwise workload could get scheduled , before machine beomes Running

Stage-B Proposal

Enhancement of Driver Interface for Hot Updation

Kindly refer to the Hot-Update Instances design which provides elaborate detail.