Google Kubernetes Engine and WEKA over POSIX deployment

A step-by-step guide to setting up Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) with WEKA on Google Cloud Platform (GCP), enhancing storage and scalability for demanding Kubernetes workloads.


Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) is a managed Kubernetes service for deploying, managing, and scaling containerized applications. WEKA is a high-performance, scalable storage platform that integrates seamlessly with Kubernetes clusters to provide persistent storage for demanding containerized applications and workflows.

Combining GKE and WEKA results in an easily automated and managed Kubernetes environment, delivering best-in-class performance at scale.

Requirements for WEKA over POSIX with GKE

  • GKE must be deployed in Standard mode.

  • GKE Worker nodes must be configured with Ubuntu OS.

If GPUDirect-TCPX (supported on GKE only with Google Container Optimized OS) is required, configure WEKA over NFS. For details, see Manage the NFS protocol.


  1. Deploy GKE in Standard mode with Ubuntu OS.

  2. Set up WEKA client on existing GKE worker nodes.

  3. Configure automated WEKA setup client on worker nodes.

  4. Install and configure the WEKA CSI plugin.

  5. Set up WEKA storage for GKE pods.

1. Deploy GKE in Standard mode with Ubuntu OS

Follow these steps to deploy GKE in Standard mode with Ubuntu OS for the worker nodes. For complete GKE documentation, visit the GCP documentation.


  1. Go to the GCP menu, select Kubernetes Engine, and then Clusters.

  1. Click CREATE to create a new cluster.

  1. If prompted, click SWITCH TO STANDARD CLUSTER. This mode also enables SSH access to worker nodes, which is necessary for installing the WEKA POSIX clients.

  1. Change from a regional to a zonal setup. Select the zone where the WEKA Cluster management IPs are located to ensure optimal communication and performance. This step ensures seamless communication between GKE and the WEKA cluster.

  1. Adjust the node pool settings: Go to Nodes within the default-pool under NODE POOLS in the GKE console, and change the Image type to Ubuntu with containerd (ubuntu_containerd).

  1. Ensure worker nodes meet a minimum configuration of 8 vCPUs and 32 GB RAM. The WEKA client requires a minimum of 2 vCPUs and 5 GB of RAM.

  1. If the GKE cluster was set up in advance, deploy the WEKA cluster to the same networking VPC and subnet. Otherwise, ensure that the GKE cluster networking is configured within the same VPC and subnet as the WEKA management IPs. Aligning networking elements per the recommendation will ensure optimal performance.

  1. Click CREATE to create the cluster.

  1. Wait for the cluster status to indicate Ready or Green before proceeding with further configuration or deployment tasks.

2. Set up WEKA client on existing GKE worker nodes

Perform this procedure for each GKE worker node individually.

Any new GKE worker nodes added later will require these steps for WEKA client installation unless the following automation steps are implemented.

Before You Begin

Ensure SSH access to the GKE worker nodes is available to install the WEKA client.


  1. Identify the names of the GKE worker nodes where the WEKA client will be installed.

  1. Go to Google Cloud Platform > Compute Engine > VM Instance console. Locate the identified GKE worker node, select SSH connect from the dropdown menu, and choose Open in browser window to initiate the SSH connection.

  1. To avoid CPU pinning conflicts with GKE, start the WEKA client using a stateless client mount. Authorize the SSH connection, then add the WEKA client from the existing WEKA cluster. For details, see the Add clients procedure.

3. Configure automated WEKA setup client on worker nodes

Google Cloud Platform (GCP) allows the addition of startup scripts at the project level, ensuring each new instance runs the script. By using metadata lookups, the WEKA client installation you can restrict to GKE cluster systems.

With auto-scaling enabled, GKE automatically adds and sets up the WEKA client on each new worker node.


  1. In the GCP Compute Engine console, scroll to the bottom of the left-side menu.

  2. Select Metadata under the Settings section.

  3. Click EDIT, then select + ADD ITEM.

  4. Set the key name to startup-script (no spaces), and paste the following GKE WEKA client install script into the Value field. Replace the following input values according to your environment:

    • WEKA_FS (line 11)

    • WEKA_HOSTS (line 17)

    • GKE_CLUSTER_NAME (line 99)

GKE WEKA client install script
curl -sS -H 'Metadata-Flavor: Google' '' | jq '.attributes."cluster-name"' -r

    #!/usr/bin/env bash

    set -euo pipefail

    export WEKA_FS="default"

    # Mount point for weka filesystem
    export WEKA_MOUNT="/mnt/gkeclient"
    # Its good to add 2-3 servers in case one is not available 
    export WEKA_HOSTS=",,"
    # Timeout for how long the client is inaccessible before being removed from the cluster
    # Default is 86400 (24hrs) in a more dynamic environment it can be lower. 
    export WEKA_CLIENTTIMEOUNT="3600"
    # Number of cores to add to WEKA FrontEnd.
    # First IP taken from WEKA_HOSTS list to download the client from.
    export WEKA_DOWNLOADIP=$(echo "$WEKA_HOSTS" | cut -d',' -f1)
    echo "Installing dependencies"
    apt-get update
    apt-get install -y apt-transport-https curl gnupg lsb-release jq

    echo "Installing gcloud SDK"
    snap install google-cloud-sdk --classic

    echo "Getting node metadata"
    ALL_METADATA="$(curl -sS -H 'Metadata-Flavor: Google' '')"
    NODE_NAME="$(curl -sS -H 'Metadata-Flavor: Google')"
    ZONE="$(curl -sS -H 'Metadata-Flavor: Google' | awk -F  "/" '{print $4}')"

    echo "Setting up disks"

    if ! gcloud compute disks list --filter="name:$DISK_NAME" | grep "$DISK_NAME" > /dev/null; then
        echo "Creating $DISK_NAME"
        gcloud compute disks create "$DISK_NAME" --size=$(( 1024*20 )) --zone="$ZONE"
        echo "$DISK_NAME already exists"

    if ! gcloud compute instances describe "$NODE_NAME" --zone "$ZONE" --format '(disks[].source)' | grep "$DISK_NAME" > /dev/null; then
        echo "Attaching $DISK_NAME to $NODE_NAME"
        gcloud compute instances attach-disk "$NODE_NAME" --device-name=sdb --disk "$DISK_NAME" --zone "$ZONE"
        echo "$DISK_NAME is already attached to $NODE_NAME"
    function create_wekaio_partition() {
        echo "--------------------------------------------"
        echo " Creating local filesystem on WekaIO volume "
        echo "--------------------------------------------"

        if mount | grep -w $wekaiosw_device | grep -w /opt/weka; then
          echo "Weka volume is already mounted"
          echo "Formatting and mounting Weka trace volume"
          mkfs.ext4 -L wekaiosw ${wekaiosw_device} || return 1
          mkdir -p /opt/weka || return 1
          mount $wekaiosw_device /opt/weka || return 1
          echo "LABEL=wekaiosw /opt/weka ext4 defaults 0 2" >>/etc/fstab
    function prepare_weka_env() {
        echo "--------------- ENV ---------------"
        echo "--------------- ENV ---------------"
        create_wekaio_partition || logger -s -t weka.install "Failed creating wekaio partition"

    function start_weka_client() {
        if ! which weka; then
          echo "Installing agent from ${WEKA_DOWNLOADIP}"
          curl --fail --max-time 10 "http://${WEKA_DOWNLOADIP}:14000/dist/v1/install" | sh || logger -s -t weka.install "Failed installing agent from the first backend"
          echo "Weka seems already installed, skipping agent install"
        mkdir -p ${WEKA_MOUNT}
        if mount | grep -w ${WEKA_MOUNT}; then
          echo "Weka filesystem seems already mounted on endpoint, skipping mount"
          mount -t wekafs ${WEKA_HOSTS}/${WEKA_FS} ${WEKA_MOUNT} -o remove_after_secs=${WEKA_CLIENTTIMEOUNT},num_cores=${WEKA_FRONTENDCORES},net=udp || logger -s -t weka.install "Error mounting filesystem"

## Update to the name of the GKE cluster
GKE_METADATA_CLUSTER_NAME=$(curl -sS -H 'Metadata-Flavor: Google' '' | jq '.attributes."cluster-name"' -r)

    echo "Instance does not belong to GKE cluster $GKE_CLUSTER_NAME. Skipping installation"
    echo "Instance belongs to GKE cluster, initializing Weka client installation"

) >/root/startup.out 2>/root/startup.err

  1. After adding the startup script, click SAVE at the bottom of the page.

  2. Test the script:

    • Increase the Node Pools node count.

    • Check the client list in WEKA UI to verify that the new clients have been added.

4. Install and configure the WEKA CSI plugin

To install and configure the WEKA CSI plugin, follow the procedures in the WEKA CSI Plugin section.

You may need to adjust the steps according to your specific setup and requirements.

5. Set up WEKA storage for GKE pods

To set up WEKA storage for use by GKE pods, follow the procedures in theDynamic and static provisioning section, in the CSI Plugin section.

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