Kubernetes on Mac: how to set up

wgs1

on 20 June 2019

UPDATED in July 2020 with the latest instruction set.

Are you looking for a Kubernetes solution to run on your Mac? MicroK8s is a lightweight, pure upstream distribution of Kubernetes developed by Canonical. It’s a compact Linux snap that installs a single-node Kubernetes cluster alongside carefully selected add-ons on Linux, Windows and macOS. Although MicroK8s was originally built for Linux, Kubernetes on Mac works natively with MicroK8s, using an Ubuntu virtual machine (VM).

MicroK8s has a low resource footprint and can be used as a single-node Kubernetes or as a multi-node cluster. This allows teams to develop and test their cloud-native applications, build CI-CD pipelines, develop AI/ML models or embed an auto-upgradeable Kubernetes in IoT and edge appliances.

While MicroK8s automates the typical functions of Kubernetes, such as scheduling, scaling and debugging, it also abstracts some of its complexity by pre-packaging add-ons such as DNS, the Kubernetes dashboard, and Istio. Additionally, MicroK8s follows the upstream Kubernetes release cadence, making new versions available within days of the official release.

Kubernetes on Mac set up steps

The following steps are required to download MicroK8s on macOS and set up the necessary add-ons to access the MicroK8s dashboard.

Step 1: Install MicroK8s

brew install ubuntu/microk8s/microk8s
microk8s install

If you don’t have the brew command you can get it from the Homebrew website.

Step2: Check MicroK8s status

microk8s status --wait-ready

Step 3: Enable the dashboard add-on

microk8s enable dashboard

Step 4: Access the Kubernetes dashboard

microk8s dashboard-proxy

Kubernetes on Mac in summary

MicroK8s is easy to install and provides a nice way to do Kubernetes on Mac workstations. For larger-scale use cases, MicroK8s nodes can be clustered together. To read more about clustering and other advanced MicroK8s configuration, continue reading and exploring with the official MicroK8s documentation.

Useful reading

kubernetes logo

What is Kubernetes?

Kubernetes, or K8s for short, is an open source platform pioneered by Google, which started as a simple container orchestration tool but has grown into a platform for deploying, monitoring and managing apps and services across clouds.

Learn more about Kubernetes ›

Newsletter signup

Select topics you’re
interested in

In submitting this form, I confirm that I have read and agree to Canonical’s Privacy Notice and Privacy Policy.

Related posts

Exploring ROS 2 Kubernetes configurations

Kubernetes and robotics make a great match. However, as we have seen, robots running ROS 2 can be tricky to set up on Kubernetes. This blog series has...

Distribute ROS 2 across machines with MicroK8s

Introduction Our simple ROS 2 talker and listener setup runs well on a single Kubernetes node, now let’s distribute it out across multiple computers. This...

Popular snaps per distro (2020 edition)

Back in mid-2019, we wrote a blog post detailing and comparing the most popular snaps across multiple distributions – Arch Linux, CentOS, Debian, Fedora,...