Tag: jenkins

Jenkins: Creating A Build Pipeline


You will need the “Git” plugin (https://plugins.jenkins.io/git).

You will need the “GitHub” plugin (https://plugins.jenkins.io/github)

Setting Up Access Within GitHub:

Log into GitHub and navigate to your repository. Click the “Settings” tab, then select “Developer settings” from the bottom of the left-hand menu. From the Developer Settings page, select “Personal access tokens”.

Click “Generate new token” to add a token for your Jenkins integration.

Provide a description for the token and select permissions – read access to the repo is sufficient.

Save the token and copy the secret text.

Setting Up Jenkins – Configuring GitHub Integration

On your Jenkins server, select “Manage Jenkins”

Select “Configure System”

Scroll down – possibly a lot – to the GitHub section. Click on the “Add GitHub Server” drop-down and select “GitHub Server”

Provide a name, the API URL is pre-populated. Next to Credentials, click the drop-down for “Add” and select “Jenkins”.

The credential kind is “Secret text”, and “ID” is your GitHub user ID. Save the credential

Select cred from drop-down and test

Hopefully the credentials are verified, you are done.

Using Jenkins – Creating A Basic Pipeline:

Click on “New Item”, create a new Freestyle project, and give it a descriptive name.

Since this is a GitHub project, I’m adding the project URL – that’s the actual project URL, not the URL for a specific branch or the path to clone the project.

As you scroll down, the tab will change to “Source Code Management”. Select “Git” and enter the URL used to clone the repository. If you have not already added credentials, click “Add”; otherwise select the appropriate credential from the drop-down menu. If you intend to build a branch other than master, correct the branch name.

Build triggers will depend on what exactly you want to happen. You can trigger new builds based on PRs or push activity. You can schedule a nightly build.

If there are a lot of changes, you may not wish to re-build the project every single time the repo changes. Conversely if the repo rarely changes, nightly builds waste a lot of cycles), etc.

Using the hook trigger requires that your Jenkins server be Internet-accessible and as such has a non-zero risk of malicious access. You can expose your endpoint through a reverse proxy to have more control over service access. I have also experimented with using GitHub provided metadata, https://api.github.com/meta, to restrict access to certain subnets. A potential attacker could still proxy their access by attempting to register your Jenkins endpoint in their GitHub project … but that’s a narrower attack vector than “anyone who can make a web call”.

If you want to trigger builds based on changes within the GitHub project, you can configure Jenkins to automatically register webhooks or you can manually add the webhook to your project.

Manual Webhook creation: Within your project’s “Settings” tab, select “Webhooks” and then “Add webhook”.

Automatic Webhook creation: Manage Jenkins => Configure System. In the GitHub section, click the second “Advanced” button (with a notepad next to it).

Click the “Additional Actions” drop-down menu and select “Convert login and password to token”

Enter your credentials and click “Create token credentials”

A message will be displayed confirming the credential.

In this case, I will schedule a nightly build of the project. After selecting “Build periodically”, enter the cron-like expression to control when you want builds to occur. To avoid having a lot of project builds initiated at quarter-hour marks, use the modifier “H” to indicate a time range. In this example, the build will be triggered some time between 02:00 and 04:59. Since the value of H is a hash of the job name, the build time will be consistent (i.e. the time displayed below the schedule field will be the time used each cycle). This means it is still possible to have a number of builds scheduled simultaneously.

Time, by default, is relative to your Jenkins’ server JVM configuration. You can override that setting by adding a TZ directive at the beginning of the schedule field.

There are a number of pre-build and post-build actions you can take, and various add-on modules expand this functionality. You can manage builds, Docker containerization, and deployment into Kubernetes clusters from Jenkins build pipelines.

Once the job has been saved, you can run it immediately by returning to the dashboard. Click the little clock to the right of the item listing.

Once a build has been completed, the item’s workspace will contain the build and console output from the build job. If a job fails, console output is a good point to start troubleshooting.

Building A Jenkins Sandbox

You can use a pre-built docker container (the “long term support” iteration is published as jenkins/jenkins:lts) or perform a local installation from https://jenkins.io/download/, add a package repo to your package manager config (http://pkg.jenkins-ci.org/redhat-stable/jenkins.repo for RedHat-based systems), or build it from the source repo. In this sandbox example, I will be using a Docker container.

Map the /var/Jenkins_home value to something. This allows you to store user-specific data on your local drive, not within the Docker image. In my case, c: is shared in Docker and I’m using c:\docker\jenkins\jenkins_home to store the data.

I have a java cacerts file mounted to the container as well – my CA chain has been imported into this file, and the default password, changeit, is used. This will allow Java to trust internally signed certificates. The keystore password appears as part of the process (i.e. anyone who can run commands like “ps aux” or “ps -efww” will see this value, so while security best practices dictate the default password should be changed … don’t change it to something like your root password!).

We can now start the Docker container:

docker run -p 8080:8080 -p 50000:50000 -v /c/docker/jenkins/jenkins_home:/var/jenkins_home -v /c/docker/jenkins/cacerts:/usr/lib/jvm/java-8-openjdk-amd64/jre/lib/security/cacerts jenkins/jenkins:lts

Once the container is running, you can visit the management web site (http://localhost:8080) and install the modules you want – or just take the defaults (you’ll end up with ‘stuff’ you don’t need … I don’t use subversion, for instance, and don’t really need a plugin for it). For a sandbox, I accept the defaults and then use Jenkins => Manage Jenkins => Manage Plug-ins to remove obviously unnecessary ones. And add any that may be needed (e.g. if you are using Visual Studio solution files, add in the MSBuild plugin).


Configuring Authentication (LDAP)

First install the appropriate plug-in – referrals cause authentication problems when using AD as the LDAP authentication source, if you are using AD for authentication … use the Active Directory plugin).

Manage Jenkins => Configure Global Security. Under access control, select the radio button for “LDAP” or “Active Directory”. Configuration is implementation specific.


Click the button to expand the advanced configuration. You should not need to specify a domain controller if service records for the domain are present in DNS. The “Site” should be “UserAuth”. For the Bind DN, you can use your userid (user@domain.ccTLD or domain\uid format) with your password. Or you can create a dedicated service account – for a “real world” implementation, you would want a dedicated service account (using *your* account means you’ll need to update your Jenkins config whenever you change your password … and when you forget this update, auth fails).

A note about the group membership lookup strategy:

For some reason, Jenkins assumes recursive group memberships will be used (e.g. there is a “App XYZ DevOps Team” that is placed into the “Jenkins Users” group, and “Jenkins Users” is assigned authorizations within the system). Bit of a shame that “none” isn’t an option for cases where there isn’t hierarchical group membership being built out.

There are three lookup strategies available: recursive group queries, LDAP_MATCHING_RULE_IN_CHAIN, and Toke-Groups user attribute. There have been bugs in the “Automatic” strategy that caused timeout failures. Additionally, the group list returned by the three strategies is not identical … so it is possible to have inconsistent authorization results as different strategies are used. To ensure consistent behaviour, I select a specific strategy.

Token-Groups: If you are not using Distribution groups within Jenkins to assign authorization (and you probably shouldn’t since it’s a distribution group, not a security group), you can select the Token-groups user attribute to handle recursive group membership. Token-groups won’t work if you are using distribution groups within Jenkins, though, as only security groups show up in the token-groups attribute.

LDAP_MATCHING_RULE_IN_CHAIN: OID 1.2.840.113556.1.4.1941, LDAP_MATCHING_GROUP_IN_CHAIN is an extended matching operator (something Microsoft added back in Windows 2003 R2) that can be used in LDAP filters:


This operator has known issues with high fan-outs and can cause hangs while data is retrieved. It is, however, a more efficient way of handling recursive group memberships. If your Jenkins groups contain only users, you will not encounter the known issue. If you are using nested groups, my personal recommendation would be to test each option and time logon activities … but if you do not wish to perform a test, this is a good starting option.

Recursive Group Queries: Jenkins issues a new LDAP query for each group – a lot of queries, but straight-forward queries. This is my last choice – i.e. if everything else hangs and causes poor user experience, try this selection.

For Active Directory domains that experience slow authentication through the AD plug-in regardless of the selected recursion scheme, I’ve set up the LDAP plug-in (it does not handle recursive group memberships) but it’s not a straight-forward configuration.


Click the button to expand the advanced server configuration. Enter the LDAP directory connection details. I usually start with clear text LDAP. Once the clear text connection tests successfully, the certificate trust can be established.

You can add a group search filter, but this is not required. If you request your group names start with a specific string, e.g. my ITSS CSG organization’s Jenkins server might use groups that start with ITSS-CSG-Jenkins, you can add a cn filter here to restrict the number of groups your implementation looks through to determine authorization. My filter, for example, is cn=ITSS-CSG-Jenkins*

Once everything is working with clear text, load the Root and Web CA public keys into your Java instance’s cacerts file (if you have more than once instance of Java and don’t know which one is being used … either figure out which one is actually being used or repeat the keytool commands for each cacerts file on your machine).

In the Docker container, the file is /usr/lib/jvm/java-8-openjdk-amd64/jre/lib/security/cacerts and I’ve mapped in from a locally maintained cacerts file that already contains our public keys for our CA chain.

Before saving your changes, make sure you TEST the connection.

Under Authorization, you can add any of your AD/LDAP groups and assign them rights (make sure your local back door account has full rights too!).

Finally, we want to set up an SSL web site. Request a certificate for your server’s hostname (make sure to include a SAN if you don’t want Chrome to call your cert invalid). Shell into the Docker instance, cd into $JENKINS_HOME, and scp the certificate pfx file.

Use the keytool command to create a JKS file from this PFX file – make sure the certificate (PFX) and keystore (JKS) passwords are the same.

Now remove the container we created earlier. Don’t delete the local files, just “docker rm <containerid>” and create It again

docker run –name jenkins -p 8443:8443 -p 50000:50000 -v /c/docker/jenkins/jenkins_home:/var/jenkins_home -v /c/docker/jenkins/cacerts:/usr/lib/jvm/java-8-openjdk-amd64/jre/lib/security/cacerts jenkins/jenkins:lts –httpPort=-1 –httpsPort=8443 –httpsKeyStore=/var/jenkins_home/jenkins.cert.file.jks –httpsKeyStorePassword=keystorepassword

Voila, you can access your server using an HTTPS URL. If you review the Jenkins documentation, they prefer leaving the Jenkins web server on http and using something like a reverse proxy to perform SSL offloading. This is reasonable in a production environment, but for a sandbox … there’s no need to bring up a sandbox Apache server just to configure a reverse proxy. Since we’re connecting our instance to the real user passwords, sending passwords around in clear text isn’t a good idea either. If only you will be accessing your sandbox (i.e. http://localhost) then there’s no need to perform this additional step. The server traffic to the LDAP / AD directory for authentication is encrypted. This encryption is just for the client communication with the web server.


Using Jenkins – System Admin Stuff

There are several of “hidden” URLs that can be used to control the Jenkins service (LMGTFY, basically). When testing and playing with config parameters, restarting the service was a frequent operation, so I’ve included two service restart URLs here:

   https://jenkins.domain.ccTLD:8443/safeRestart ==> enter quiet mode, wait for running builds to complete, then restart

   https://jenkins.domain.ccTLD:8443/restart ==> Restart not so cleanly

Multiple discussions about creating a more fault tolerant authentication scheme within Jenkins exist on their ‘Issues’ site. Currently, you cannot use local accounts if the directory service is unavailable. Not a big deal if you’re on the company network and using one of our highly available directory solutions. Bit of a shocker, though, if your sandbox environment is on your laptop and you try to play with the instance when not on the company network. In production implementations, this would be a DR consideration (dependency on the directory being recovered). In a cloud-hosted implementation, this creates a dependency on network connectivity into the company.

As an emergency solution, you can disable security on your Jenkins installation. I’d also get some sort of firewall rule (OS-based or hardware firewall) to restrict console access to a trusted terminal server or workstation. To disable security, stop Jenkins. Edit the config.xml file in $JENKINS_HOME, and ifnd the <useSecurity> section. Change ‘true’ to ‘false’ and start Jenkins. You’ll be able to access the console without credentials.

Updating Jenkins Image

General practice for updating an application is not to update a container. Instead, download an updated image and recreate the container with the new image. I store the container initialization command along with the folder to which image directories are mapped. My file system has /path/to/docker/storage/AppName that contains a text file with the initialization command and folder(s) that are mapped into the container. This avoids having to find the proper initialization parameters when I upgrade the container.

To update the container, pull a new image, stop the container, remove the container, and create it again. That is:

docker stop jenkins
docker pull jenkins/jenkins:lts
docker rm jenkins
<whatever you used to create the container>

Kubernetes Sandbox With Minikube

A scaled down sandbox can be used to gain experience with the applications and techniques used to deploy containerized applications and microservices. This sandbox will be built on a Windows 10 laptop, but the same components can be run on Linux variants.


Verify Virtualization is enabled:

Open Task Manager (taskman.exe) and ensure the virtualization extensions have been enabled.

If virtualization is disabled, boot into the system config (start menu => settings => update & security => recovery, click “Restart now” under “Advanced startup”)

Uninstall the Windows OpenSSH client

Click ‘Start’ and type “Manage optional features” – within the installed feature list, find “OpenSSH Client”. If present, remove it.

Enable Hyper-V

Enable the Hyper-V Windows feature (Control Panel => Programs => Programs and Features, “Turn Windows features on or off” and check both Hyper-V components).

Add Virtual Switch To Hyper-V

In the Hyper-V Manager, open the “Virtual Switch Manager”. Create a new External virtual switch. Record the name used for your new virtual switch.


Install Minikube

View https://storage.googleapis.com/kubernetes-release/release/stable.txt and record the version number. The current stable release version is v1.11.1

Modify the URL http://storage.googleapis.com/kubernetes-release/release/v#.##.#/bin/windows/amd64/kubectl.exe to use the current stable release version. Current URL is http://storage.googleapis.com/kubernetes-release/release/v1.11.1/bin/windows/amd64/kubectl.exe

Create a folder %ProgramFiles%\Minikube and add this folder to your PATH variable.

Download kubectl.exe from the current release URL to %ProgramFiles%\Minikube

Download the current Minikube release from https://github.com/kubernetes/minikube/releases (scroll down to the “Distribution” section, locate the Windows/amd64 link, and save that binary as %ProgramFiles%\Minikube\minikube.exe). ** v0.28.1 was completely non-functional for me (and errors were related to existing issues on the minikube GitHub site) so I used v0.27.0

Verify both are functional. From a command prompt (run as administrator) or Powershell (again run as administrator), run “kubectl version” and verify the output includes a client version

Run “minikube get-k8s-versions” and verify there is output.

Configure the Minikube VM using the Hyper-V driver and switch you created earlier.

minikube start –vm-driver hyperv –hyperv-virtual-switch “Minikube Switch” –alsologtostderr

Once everything has started, “kubectl version” will report both a client and server version.

You can use “minikube ip” to ascertain the IP address of your cluster

If the cluster services fail to start, there are a few log locations.

Run “minikube logs” to see the log information from the minikube virtual machine

Use “kubectl get pods –all-namespaces” to determine which component(s) fail, then use “kubectl logs -f name -n kube-system” to review logs to determine why the component failed to start.

If you need to connect to the minikube Hyper-V VM, the username is docker and the password is tcuser – you can ssh into the host or connect to the console through the Hyper-V Manager.

Before the management interface comes online, you can use view the status of the containers using the docker command line utilities on the minikube VM.

$ docker ps

CONTAINER ID        IMAGE                        COMMAND                  CREATED              STATUS              PORTS               NAMES

7d8d66b5e465        af20925d51a3                 “kube-apiserver –ad…”   About a minute ago   Up About a minute                       k8s_kube-apiserver_kube-apiserver-minikube_kube-system_0f6076ada4273000c4b2f846f250f3f7_3

bb4be8d267cb        52920ad46f5b                 “etcd –advertise-cl…”   7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_etcd_etcd-minikube_kube-system_0199781185b49d6ff5624b06273532ab_0

d6be5d6ae360        9c16409588eb                 “/opt/kube-addons.sh”    7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_kube-addon-manager_kube-addon-manager-minikube_kube-system_3afaf06535cc3b85be93c31632b765da_1

b5ddf5d1ff11        ad86dbed1555                 “kube-controller-man…”   7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_kube-controller-manager_kube-controller-manager-minikube_kube-system_d9cefa6e3dc9378ad420db8df48a9da5_0

252d382575c7        704ba848e69a                 “kube-scheduler –ku…”   7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_kube-scheduler_kube-scheduler-minikube_kube-system_2acb197d598c4730e3f5b159b241a81b_0

421b2e264f9f        k8s.gcr.io/pause-amd64:3.1   “/pause”                 7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_POD_kube-scheduler-minikube_kube-system_2acb197d598c4730e3f5b159b241a81b_0

85e0e2d0abab        k8s.gcr.io/pause-amd64:3.1   “/pause”                 7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_POD_kube-controller-manager-minikube_kube-system_d9cefa6e3dc9378ad420db8df48a9da5_0

2028c6414573        k8s.gcr.io/pause-amd64:3.1   “/pause”                 7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_POD_kube-apiserver-minikube_kube-system_0f6076ada4273000c4b2f846f250f3f7_0

663b87989216        k8s.gcr.io/pause-amd64:3.1   “/pause”                 7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_POD_etcd-minikube_kube-system_0199781185b49d6ff5624b06273532ab_0

7eae09d0662b        k8s.gcr.io/pause-amd64:3.1   “/pause”                 7 minutes ago        Up 7 minutes                            k8s_POD_kube-addon-manager-minikube_kube-system_3afaf06535cc3b85be93c31632b765da_1


This allows you to view the specific logs for a container that is failing to launch

$ docker logs 0d21814d8226

Flag –admission-control has been deprecated, Use –enable-admission-plugins or –disable-admission-plugins instead. Will be removed in a future version.

Flag –insecure-port has been deprecated, This flag will be removed in a future version.

I0720 16:37:07.591352       1 server.go:135] Version: v1.10.0

I0720 16:37:07.596494       1 server.go:679] external host was not specified, using

I0720 16:37:08.555806       1 feature_gate.go:190] feature gates: map[Initializers:true]

I0720 16:37:08.565008       1 initialization.go:90] enabled Initializers feature as part of admission plugin setup

I0720 16:37:08.690234       1 plugins.go:149] Loaded 10 admission controller(s) successfully in the following order: NamespaceLifecycle,LimitRanger,ServiceAccount,NodeRestriction,DefaultTolerationSeconds,DefaultStorageClass,MutatingAdmissionWebhook,Initializers,ValidatingAdmissionWebhook,ResourceQuota.

I0720 16:37:08.717560       1 master.go:228] Using reconciler: master-count

W0720 16:37:09.383605       1 genericapiserver.go:342] Skipping API batch/v2alpha1 because it has no resources.

W0720 16:37:09.399172       1 genericapiserver.go:342] Skipping API rbac.authorization.k8s.io/v1alpha1 because it has no resources.

W0720 16:37:09.407426       1 genericapiserver.go:342] Skipping API storage.k8s.io/v1alpha1 because it has no resources.

W0720 16:37:09.445491       1 genericapiserver.go:342] Skipping API admissionregistration.k8s.io/v1alpha1 because it has no resources.

[restful] 2018/07/20 16:37:09 log.go:33: [restful/swagger] listing is available at

[restful] 2018/07/20 16:37:09 log.go:33: [restful/swagger] is mapped to folder /swagger-ui/

[restful] 2018/07/20 16:37:52 log.go:33: [restful/swagger] listing is available at

[restful] 2018/07/20 16:37:52 log.go:33: [restful/swagger] is mapped to folder /swagger-ui/


Worst case, we haven’t really done anything yet and you can start over with “minikube delete”, then delete the .minikube directory (likely located in %USERPROFILE%), and start over.

Once you have updated the Hyper-V configuration and started the cluster, you should be able to access the kubernetes dashboard

Actually using it

Now that you have minikube running, you can access the dashboard via a web URL – or just type “minikube dashboard” to have the site launched in your default browser.

Create a deployment – we’ll use the nginx sample image here

Voila, under Workloads => Deployments, you should see this test deployment (if the Pods column has 0/1, the image has not completely started … wait for it!)

Under Workloads=>Pods, you can select the sample. In the upper right-hand corner, there are buttons to shell into the Pod as well as view logs from the Pod.

Expose the deployment as a service. You can use the web GUI to verify the service or “kubectl describe service servicename

Either method provides the TCP port to access the service. Access the URL in a browser. Voila, a web site:

Viewing the Pod logs should now show the web server access logs.

That’s all fine and good, but there are dozens of other ways to bring up a quick web server. Using Docker directly. Magic cloudy hosting services. A server with a web server on it. K8 allows you to quickly scale the deployment – specify the number of replicas you want and you’ve got them:

Describing the service, you will see multiple endpoints.

What do I really have?

You’ve got containers – either your own container for your application or some test container. Following these instructions, we’ve got a test container that serves up a simple web page.

You’ve got a Pod – one or more containers are run in a Pod. A pod exists on a single machine, so all containers within a Pod share resources. This is good thing if the containers interact with each other (shared resources speed up this communication), but it’s a bad thing if the containers have no correlation but run high I/O functions (shared resources create contention for this communication).

You’ve got a deployment – a managed group of Pods. Each application or microservice will have a deployment. The deployment keeps the desired number of instances running – if an instance is not healthy, it is terminated and a new instance spawned. You can resize the deployment on a schedule, or you can use load metrics to manage capacity.

You’ve got services – services map resources running within pods to internal or external access. The service has an IP address and port for client access, and requests are load balanced across healthy, running Pods. In our case, we are using NodePort, and “kubectl describe service ngnix-sample” will provide the port number.

Because client access is performed through the service, you can perform “rolling updates” by setting a new image (and even roll back if the newly deployed image is malfunctioning). To roll a new image into service, use “kubectl set image deployments/ngnix-sample ngnix-sample=something/image:v5”. Using “kubectl get pods”, you can see replicas come online with the new image and ones with the old image terminate. Or, for a quick summary of the rollout status, run “kubectl rollout status deployment nginx-sample”

If the new container fails to load, or if adverse behavior is experienced, you can run “kubectl rollout undo deployment nginx-sample” to revert to the previous working container image.

When you are done with your sandbox, you can stop it using “minikube stop”, and “minikube start” will bring the sandbox back online.

A “real world” deployment would have multiple servers (physical, virtual, or a combination thereof) essentially serving as a resource pool. You wouldn’t manually scale deployments either.

Notice that the dashboard – and all of its administrative functions – are open to the world. A “real world” deployment would either include something like OpenUnison to authenticate through ADFS or some web hook that performs LDAP authentication and provides an access token.

And there’s no reason to use kubectl to manually deploy updates. Commit your changes into the git repository. Jenkins picks up the changes, runs the Maven build and tests, and creates a Docker build. The final step within the Jenkins workflow is to perform the image rollout. This means you can have a new image deployed within minutes (actual time depends on the build/test time) of committing code to a repo.