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Evaluations in Keptn

A KeptnEvaluation does a simple evaluation of the metrics data you capture, to answer a question such as "Do I have more than four CPUs available?" or "Is my remote database accessible?" or check for other problems in your infrastructure. It can be defined to run before or after your software is deployed.

When a pre-deployment evaluation is run, by default, the deployment is kept in a pending state until the evaluation passes with a successful result.

Evaluations can be defined at:

  • KeptnApp level, so before or after the deployment of the entire ensemble of workloads that makes your application.
  • KeptnWorkload level, so before or after a single deployment/stateful-set/daemon-set is deployed.

Use the Analysis feature if you want to do more complex investigations that may include multiple criteria with weights and scoring applied.

To implement evaluations, you must:

  1. Install and enable Keptn in your cluster. You will need both the Keptn Metrics Operator (metrics-operator) and the Keptn Lifecycle Operator (lifecycle-operator) components.
  2. Define a KeptnMetricsProvider resource for each data source you want to use for evaluations. You can define multiple instances of multiple types of data providers.
  3. Annotate all workloads (Deployments, StatefulSets, DaemonSets, and ReplicaSets) with basic annotations.
  4. Generate the required KeptnApp resources following the instructions in Auto app discovery.
  5. Define a KeptnMetric resource for each piece of data (defined as a query from one of your data sources) that you need for your evaluations.
  6. Create KeptnEvaluationDefinition resources for each evaluation you want to perform.
  7. Manually create the appropriate KeptnAppContext resource listing all KeptnApp level evaluations, referring to KeptnEvaluationDefinition resources
  8. Annotate the workload YAML files for each KeptnEvaluationDefinition resource you want to run pre- and/or post-deployment.

Create KeptnEvaluationDefinition resources

A KeptnEvaluationDefinition resource contains a list of objectives, each of which checks whether a defined KeptnMetric resource meets a defined target value. The example app-pre-deploy-eval.yaml file specifies the app-pre-deploy-eval-2 evaluation as follows:

kind: KeptnEvaluationDefinition
  name: app-pre-deploy-eval-2
  namespace: podtato-kubectl
    - keptnMetricRef:
        name: available-cpus
        namespace: podtato-kubectl
      evaluationTarget: ">1"

The evaluationTarget is set to be >1, so this evaluation ensures that more than 1 CPU is available before the workload or application is deployed.

This evaluation references the KeptnMetric resource that is named available-cpus. This is defined in the example metric.yaml file:

kind: KeptnMetric
  name: available-cpus
  namespace: podtato-kubectl
    name: my-provider
  query: "sum(kube_node_status_capacity{resource='cpu'})"
  fetchIntervalSeconds: 10

Note the following:

  • One KeptnEvaluationDefinition resource can include multiple objective fields that reference additional metrics. In this example, you might want to also query available memory, disk space, and other resources that are required for the deployment.
  • The KeptnMetric resources that are referenced in a KeptnEvaluationDefinition resource
    • can be defined on different namespaces in the cluster
    • can query different instances of different types of metric providers
  • All objectives within a KeptnEvaluationDefinition resource are evaluated in order. If the evaluation of any objective fails, the KeptnEvaluation itself fails.
  • You can define multiple evaluations for each stage (pre- and post-deployment). These evaluations run in parallel so the failure of one evaluation has no effect on whether other evaluations are completed.
  • The results of each evaluation are written to a KeptnEvaluation resource.

Annotate the workload resource for workload level evaluations

To define the pre-/post-deployment evaluations to run for a single Kubernetes workload, you need to provide an annotation for each KeptnEvaluationDefinition resource to be run pre-/post-deployment. The annotations for evaluations are: <evaluation-name> <evaluation-name>

Caveat: Be very careful when implementing pre-deployment evaluations since, if one fails, Keptn prevents the deployment of your workload.

The value of these annotations corresponds to the values of the name field of each KeptnTaskDefinition resource. These resources contain re-usable "functions" that can execute before and after the deployment.

If everything is fine, the deployment continues.

Create KeptnAppContext for app level evaluations

To execute pre-/post-deployment evaluations for a KeptnApp, create a KeptnAppContext resource with the same name and in the same namespace as the KeptnApp. The KeptnAppContext resource contains a list of pre-/post-deployment evaluations that should be executed before and after the workloads within the KeptnApp are deployed.

See the Getting started guide for more information on how to configure a KeptnAppContext to execute pre-/post-deployment checks.

Example of pre/post-deployment Evaluations

A comprehensive example of pre-/post-deployment evaluations and tasks can be found in our examples folder, where we use Podtato-Head to run some simple pre-deployment checks both at App and Workload level. Check out the readme to learn how to test this example on your machine.